Saturday, July 30, 2016

Will Trump's Overt Racism Drive Away Moderate Whites?

Donald Trump may have locked up the white Christofascists and white supremacist (in my view, the two are nearly synonymous) vote through blatant racism, but some research suggests that moderate whites may be turned off by Trump's odious racism.  True, what voters do in the secrecy of the voting booth may differ from research results, but the findings are encouraging and suggest that whites as a whole are less racist than Trump believes.  Salon has a piece that looks at this issue.  Here are excerpts: 
Over the past few weeks, there has been been renewed discussion about Donald Trump’s past racism and the racism that has persisted throughout his campaign. Trump and his father were sued twice by the Department of Justice for refusing to rent apartments to black people. He has said, in private, that he believes, “Laziness is a trait in blacks. It really is; I believe that.” He also publicly called for the execution of the Central Park Five, all of whom were later declared innocent (afterwards, he said they were “no angels.” During his campaign, Trump has regularly engaged in racist rhetoric. He engaged in a racist attack on Judge Gonzalo Curiel, the judge overseeing the lawsuit against Trump University. Trump has retweeted racists and accounts connected to the “white genocide” hashtag (a white supremacist hashtag). He has frequently referred to Elizabeth Warren as “Pocahontas.”
[M]any have dismissed the idea that Trump’s racism will do anything other than help him among whites. However, my analysis of ANES 2016 suggests that Trump’s racism may be extreme enough to alienate not just voters of color, but also moderate whites.
Many commentators have correctly noted that Trump’s racist comments hurt him among people of color. Latinos and Asian Americans have widely rejected Trump, and in one Ohio poll, Trump had 0% support among African-Americans. Among harder-to-poll Spanish-speaking Latinos, Trump’s support is less than 11 percent. Trump may well win an even smaller share of the non-white vote than Republicans normally win (Romney won just 17% of the non-white vote). However, there are several reasons to believe that some whites who would happily cast a vote for a Reagan, Romney or McCain would hesitate to vote for Trump. Why? Because Americans are very aware of more glaring forms of racism, like racial stereotyping. As legal scholar Ian Haney Lopez argues, the Republicans have had electoral success by using dog-whistles, rather than explicit racial appeals.  We find that Trump support among white Independents is very low among respondents with racial resentment of .5 or less (the scale goes from 0 to 1 and the mean resentment for whites is slightly above .6). Trump support among white Independents and white Republicans is indistinguishable at both low and high levels of resentment, but at the levels of resentment towards the middle (.4 to .8), white Independents are significantly less likely to support Trump than white Republicans. At around average (middle) levels of resentment, there is a higher probability of Clinton support among Independents, compared to Trump.
While the results are significant, there is a good deal of uncertainty regarding the magnitude of the effect. However, the results do suggest that Trump’s racism could alienate some white and racially liberal Independents. It’s also likely he will be hurt more when his past racism is more widely discussed in the media.

1 comment:

EdA said...

Following in the footsteps of Ronald Rotten in the spirit of Tricky Dick's Southern Strategy, the first stop of Tax-cheat Trump's post-nomination campaign was in Philadelphia -- Philadelphia, Mississippi, best known for the murder and cover-up of civil rights workers.

The piece of trump itself will be campaigning in Mississippi later in August.

And now I have to try to scour the electrons from the article download from my computer.