Destination 270

SMU Students Analyze the 2012 Presidential Election

Demographic Changes Trouble GOP

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Much has been made of the GOP’s growing demographic challenges. As a political party, Republicans will have to evaluate how to appeal to a changing America while maintaining core – and to some, aging values.

The growing minority population is impossible to ignore,  “Nonwhites made up 28 percent of the electorate this year, compared with 20 percent in 2000. Much of that growth is coming from Hispanics,” Newser reports.  

While the popular vote was reasonably close, the president claimed a significant portion of minority votes, “Obama captured a commanding 80 percent of the growing ranks of nonwhite voters in 2012, just as he did in 2008. Republican Mitt Romney won 59 percent of non-Hispanic whites.”  
The growing population of single women will also change how each party shapes their messages and what candidates will have an appeal to this group,”Another trend that will be shaping the future electorate is the stronger influence of single women. They vote differently from men and from women who are married. Fifty-four percent of single women call themselves Democrats; 36 percent of married women do.” Particularly after a campaign cycle highlighted by gaffes by Republicans about the reproductive rights of women, the GOP will need to figure out how to appeal to this group of individuals.  
The Democratic party seems to have put themselves in the best position for future success,”They have put together a coalition of populations that will eventually become the majority or are marching toward majority status in the population, and populations without whom it will be very difficult to win national elections and some statewide elections, particularly in states with large black and Hispanic populations…”
It is clear Republicans will need to figure out how to broaden their appeal as the voting population continues to change, “The answer to the electoral woes the GOP experienced on Election Day is demographics, pundits agreed, and Republicans need to expand the party to reach out to new and growing groups of voters,” according to  Deseret News .
Only time will tell how each party responds to the growing changes and challenges of America. 

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