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Republican Voters Now More Likely Than Democrats to Identify as ‘Working Class’ or ‘Lower Class


There is a lot of history behind the Democrats being the party of the middle class. But new polls show that the GOP may be taking that title away.

Since 2022, Republicans are more likely than Democrats to say they are working class or lower class, while most Democrats now say they are middle class or upper middle class.

How did the party of billionaires and hedge fund managers become the favorite of the working class instead of the “party of the common man”?

There are many reasons for this, such as more people going to college, fewer people joining unions, and a strange billionaire named Donald Trump who jumped off an escalator and changed politics in a way that no one else could.

When it comes to politics, these three big changes have made a huge difference.

Less people joining unions

Being a member of a union is a strong indicator of being a Democrat. According to a study from the Center for American Progress, male union members were 13% more likely to vote for President Joe Biden and female union members were 21% more likely to vote for Team Blue.

But the number of people in unions has dropped by a huge amount. In 2023, only 10% of workers were in a union, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This is down from 20.1% in 1983, which is the first year for which similar data is available. Recent studies also showed that being a union member doesn’t define the social lives of working-class people anymore. Instead, many people who used to hang out at the union hall now go to the gun club.

Many working-class Americans have moved to the right since unions no longer push millions of them to the left. This is especially true since Republicans, led by Donald Trump, have stopped focusing on tax cuts and entitlement changes and started supporting more populist ideas.

Demographics are changing

Since World War II, college-educated white voters have been moving to the left and making up a bigger and bigger part of the Democratic party.

Their departure was sped up by Donald Trump, whose rude political style turned off many people who saw his actions as breaking social rules. In fact, Trump was in charge of the GOP, and starting in 2020, there were more white Democrats with college degrees than white Democrats without degrees. This was the first time in history that this had happened.

In the United States, there is a strong link between schooling and class identity. That’s why a white college professor might say they are middle class and a higher-income plumber or electrician might say they are working class. Since the base has grown smarter, it’s not a surprise that more Democrats now identify with the middle or upper class.

As long as there are qualified progressives in power within the party, this trend is likely to continue. These progressives will likely take stances that turn off working class voters.

Last but not least, voters from the working class have moved away from the Democratic Party as people become more interested in cultural problems.

People have been fighting over culture since at least the 1980s, and maybe even the 1960s. However, the fights have gotten worse recently because leaders on both the right and left care more about women’s rights, parents’ rights, LGBT+ rights, and immigration than they do about the economy.

Because these problems are so important, some working-class voters don’t like how the Democratic Party is moving more and more toward progressive views. The Progressive Policy Institute found that 45% of working voters strongly agree that the Democrats have moved too far to the left. Another 40% strongly agreed that “public sector unions, environmental activists, and academics” have too much power in the party.

Ultimately, these things have changed the political scene, and this big change could be very important in the 2024 election and beyond.

Source: Moneywise

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