There is a huge amount of post-election handwringing over why the polls were wrong. But the most interesting analysis I saw was this piece by Daniel McCormack, contesting the theory that income, % white or manufacturing employment were actually the discriminating separations– it was education.
What are the four variables? Starting top left: income, manufacturing, %white, education. What is happening? Let McCormack explain–
What the regression analysis is telling us, then, is that districts with lots of manufacturing employment aren’t on average shifting their votes to Trump; they just appear to be shifting their votes to Trump because in many cases these districts also have below-average education levels, and these districts absolutely are shifting votes to Trump. In fact, after accounting for the effect of education on vote change, districts with manufacturing employment are shifting less of their votes towards Trump. (I ran a hundred or so permutations of this model, adding and subtracting different covariates. For instance, if education is left out but whiteness and income are included, manufacturing is still positive. I feel pretty confident that education is responsible for the flipped sign on manufacturing.)
So the real enemy for the GOP is education— half the scholastic respondents will be first time voters in 2020– and then in increasing numbers every election cycle going forward for the forseeable future. The GOP base isnt going to college anytime soon–older, sicker, and whiter than the democratic base– but uniformly and fervently wishes a college education for their children. Olds dont go to college…they eventually die-off. The Trump presidency is actually radar chaff obscuring deep structural problems in the electorate. The single thing Trump said to his supporters that was true was “I am your last chance”. The GOP will never win a popular majority again, and soon demographics will top the levees of gerrymandered districts. Then in 2040 the hispanic demographic deathcross, where declining number of whites crosses the increasing number of hispanics.