Biden's Blue Collar Blueprint to Win Reelection
The President is making a specific economic appeal to the very voters that have left the party.
In a well-written, vigorously-delivered speech, President Biden touted his accomplishments and the economic progress under his watch. He laid out his foreign and domestic policy proposals and extended a hand to the new Republican majority. The coverage and chatter about the speech included what the President said about the debt ceiling, Marjorie Taylor Green yelling “liar,” and the Chinese balloon. But the most important element went largely un-discussed. Buried in that speech was an attempt to solve the Democrat’s existential political problem — our problem with working-class voters.
How Biden plans to stop erosion with voters without a college degree will decide the 2024 election.
The Dangerous Fragility of the Dem Coalition
There is a tremendous paradox to the Democrats’ recent electoral success. We keep winning elections — even in tough political environments. But each victory reveals a fragility in our coalition that keeps me up at night.
American politics is becoming polarized on educational lines — college-educated voters supporting Democrats and voters without a college degree supporting Republicans. For a long time, that trend was limited to White voters with a college degree. However, in 2020, Republicans made small but significant gains with Black and Latino men without a college degree. If that trend continues, Democrats are dead in the water. There is no math that supports a governing coalition that is entirely dependent on college-educated voters.
Throughout the Trump era, Democrats traded the working-class voters who had been our base for college-educated voters who live in the suburbs. These college-educated voters previously voted Republican but are decidedly anti-MAGA. In some states, that’s a good trade for Democrats. Georgia saw an explosion in the size of suburbs over the years, which explains how Georgia went from largely non-competitive prior to 2016. But in other states like Ohio and Iowa, whose populations are disproportionately working class, the trade-off took states that Obama won twice and made them non-competitive for Democrats.
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