The "economic anxiety" excuse for why Trump won will never, ever die it seems, and the latest proponents of the odious theory are the Democrats themselves. Greg Sargent took a look at the internal polling from the Democratic "autopsy" of the 2016 campaign and has some grim figures:
One finding from the polling stands out: A shockingly large percentage of these Obama-Trump voters said Democrats’ economic policies will favor the wealthy — twice the percentage that said the same about Trump. I was also permitted to view video of some focus group activity, which showed Obama-Trump voters offering sharp criticism of Democrats on the economy.
Priorities USA, the super PAC that is working to restore Democrats to power, conducted focus groups of Obama-Trump voters in Wisconsin and Michigan — two states that Trump snatched from Democrats — in late January and polled some 800 Obama-Trump voters nationally at around the same time. The pollsters also conducted focus groups with so-called drop-off voters — people who voted for Obama in 2012 but didn’t vote in 2016 — in the same states and polled 800 drop-off voters nationally.
“[Hillary] Clinton and Democrats’ economic message did not break through to drop-off or Obama-Trump voters, even though drop-off voters are decidedly anti-Trump,” Priorities USA concluded in a presentation of its polling data and focus group findings, which has been shown to party officials in recent days.
The poll found that Obama-Trump voters, many of whom are working-class whites and were pivotal to Trump’s victory, are economically losing ground and are skeptical of Democratic solutions to their problems. Among the findings:
“If you felt like your life wasn’t getting better over eight years, then you might draw a conclusion that Democrats don’t care about you,” Guy Cecil, chairman of Priorities USA, told me in an interview. “Certainly a subset of these voters were responsive to what Trump was selling them on immigration. But you had a lot of consistency with the Obama-Trump voters … in terms of the severe economic anxiety they face.”
- 50 percent of Obama-Trump voters said their incomes are falling behind the cost of living, and another 31 percent said their incomes are merely keeping pace with the cost of living.
- A sizable chunk of Obama-Trump voters — 30 percent — said their vote for Trump was more a vote against Clinton than a vote for Trump. Remember, these voters backed Obama four years earlier.
- 42 percent of Obama-Trump voters said congressional Democrats’ economic policies will favor the wealthy, vs. only 21 percent of them who said the same about Trump. (Forty percent say that about congressional Republicans.) A total of 77 percent of Obama-Trump voters said Trump’s policies will favor some mix of all other classes (middle class, poor, all equally), while a total of 58 percent said that about congressional Democrats.
The economic anxiety angle remains an excuse. I know that because Clinton adopted a lot of Bernie's economic policies before the election, and Tom Perez has adopted even more now ($15 minimum wage comes to mind) and yet nobody seems to give a damn. If it was ever really about economics and not a white supremacist in the White House, the Dems would have won.
The message is clear: the Dems have to kick black, Hispanic, and Aisan voters to the curb and go after white votes, because only they matter.
I'm tired of it and I'll fight that every step of the way.