Culture Wars/Current Controversies

A Blue Texas? Keep Dreaming

This article is from 2012 but it raises an important issue that was largely ignored in the 2016 election, and that is the fact that even though Texas is now a “majority-minority” state, Trump still beat Clinton by nine percentage points. A standard presumption on both the Left and Right is that as the US becomes more diverse and integrated, the Democrats will have a distinct advantage because minorities typically vote Democrat. However, there may be room for caution. As American society becomes more diverse, the white vote in red states may become even more red, and the Republicans may gain an increased number of minority voters.

Minorities, whether ethnic minorities, women, gays, etc. may feel more comfortable voting for the GOP if they hold conservative views on issues such as economics, foreign policy, social issues, and if they feel that the the wider society is tolerant enough that they do not need to feel personally threatened. Additionally, class divisions within minority communities are likely to widen to an even greater degree in the future. There is also evidence that immigrants may well be inclined to assimilate into the political culture of the community they immigrate into. This would mean that immigrants who migrate to Texas are likely to be more conservative than immigrants who migrate to California.

By Nate Cohn

New Republic

Not only did the huge Hispanic turnout on Election Day help return President Obama to the White House; it has also lifted Democratic hopes about what just a few years ago was inconceivable: a blue Texas. Even Eva Longoria decided to pen a piece about Texas’ emerging swing state status and some Texas Republicans are getting nervous too— Jeb Bush asserted that Texas would be a blue state in 2016—but the talk is premature. Despite having the second largest Latino population in the country, Texas won’t be purple, let alone blue, for a long time.


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