Presidential Race Maps Writing on the Wall

Is The GOP Running Out Of White Voters?

Posted Jan 02, 2013 at 6:51 AM by Maurice Berger

With the population of older white--and generally GOP-leaning--voters aging out and dying, is the Republican Party risking becoming a "regional party" if they don't increase support among Hispanic and other voters. GOP pollster Whit Ayres released a strategy memo saying that Republicans are, indeed, at risk in future elections:  "Mitt Romney won a landslide among white voters, defeating Barack Obama by 59 to 39 percent. In the process he won every large segment of white voters, often by double-digit margins: white men, white women, white Catholics, white Protestants, white old people, white young people. Yet that was not enough to craft a national majority. Republicans have run out of persuadable white voters. For the fifth time in the past six presidential elections, Republicans lost the popular vote. Trying to win a national election by gaining a larger and larger share of a smaller and smaller portion of the electorate is a losing political proposition."

PollTrack: Some Notes On The Ryan Pick

Posted Aug 12, 2012 at 10:22 AM by Maurice Berger

Mitt Romney selection of Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan--while an early and dramatic turn in election 2012--may not prove decisive to the outcome. (Few VP picks are.) But PollTrack's biggest caution: do not read too much into polls about the pick. While hardening public opinion can doom or boost a candidate--and the Obama campaign's attempt to define Romney has definitely resulted in a negative downturn in Romney's likeability numbers that may be very difficult to reverse at this point--the true contours of a presidential election often do not become clear until after both party's nominating conventions.

Right now, PollTrack sees the choice of Ryan as a possible net minus for the Romney campaign for one reason: senior voters.

Older voters represent a key and often enthusiastic demographic for the GOP. Yet a recent poll by AARP reports that in the race is tied in the over 50 demographic. This suggests a fundamental problem for Romney. Adding a candidate to the Republican ticket who openly (and unambiguously) calls for a radical restructuring of Medicare and who has referred to Social Security as a "ponzi scheme," and senior voters may have reason to rethink the GOP team. A sharp diminution of support among senior voters (especially voters over 65, who are often the most reliable voters), could spell trouble for Romney-Ryan in the fall. Will Ryan's considerable gifts as a campaigner offset this potential problem? Stay tuned.