Impact of generational change on the makeup of the Republican Party
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Author Topic: Impact of generational change on the makeup of the Republican Party  (Read 2127 times)
Shaula🏳️‍⚧️
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« on: April 22, 2023, 01:05:28 PM »

The old die and the young get older. How will generational change affect the Republican party? Now I'm not talking about how the general population changing will affect its ability to win, I'm more talking about within the party itself.

Polls show that Trump consistently does much better with younger Republican primary voters than DeSantis, and vice versa. Younger GOP voters are more likely to be more moderate on social issues, but at the same time are more likely than older Republicans to be invested in the sorts of culture war battles that often begin online.
They are less economically hardliner than older Republicans, and notably they are WAY more isolationist/non-interventionist than older Republicans, having a massive polling divide over Ukraine aid.
Overall with generational change, the party seems to be heading in a more moderate direction in some ways, but a more Trumpy and populist direction in others.

How do you think this will affect the party heading into the future?
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« Reply #1 on: April 22, 2023, 01:33:54 PM »

The old die and the young get older. How will generational change affect the Republican party? Now I'm not talking about how the general population changing will affect its ability to win, I'm more talking about within the party itself.

Polls show that Trump consistently does much better with younger Republican primary voters than DeSantis, and vice versa. Younger GOP voters are more likely to be more moderate on social issues, but at the same time are more likely than older Republicans to be invested in the sorts of culture war battles that often begin online.
They are less economically hardliner than older Republicans, and notably they are WAY more isolationist/non-interventionist than older Republicans, having a massive polling divide over Ukraine aid.
Overall with generational change, the party seems to be heading in a more moderate direction in some ways, but a more Trumpy and populist direction in others.

How do you think this will affect the party heading into the future?

I think both parties will become more populist and shift to the left. The Democrats will become staunchly progressive, and the Republicans will become social and economic moderates. I also think both parties will become more isolationist. Neo-conservatism is a political loser nowadays. The Cold War-era fears of socialism are slowly dying as the new generation embraces more left-wing policies. With neither party championing right-wing politics, a third party would pick up the reigns of conservatism, and we could see a legitimate third party forming.

Essentially, the Democrats become the party of progressives, the Republicans become the party of moderates, and this third party (Constitution most likely) becomes the party of conservatives.

However, what will change is the old maxim that Republicans fall in line and that Democrats fall in love. In the future, the exact opposite will be true: Democrats will fall in line, and Republicans will fall in love.
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dw93
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« Reply #2 on: April 22, 2023, 01:44:25 PM »

If we're lucky, the GOP will become a socially and economically moderate, but culturally conservative party. If not, it'll continue down the cooky, reactionary, theocratic, conspiracy driven path that it's currently on.


I'm more curious as to what happens with the Democrats. Does formerly Republican big money donors infiltrate their party pushing them to the right economically, or does it, for better or worse, continue becoming a more progressive party?
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Shaula🏳️‍⚧️
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« Reply #3 on: April 22, 2023, 09:18:49 PM »

If we're lucky, the GOP will become a socially and economically moderate, but culturally conservative party. If not, it'll continue down the cooky, reactionary, theocratic, conspiracy driven path that it's currently on.


I'm more curious as to what happens with the Democrats. Does formerly Republican big money donors infiltrate their party pushing them to the right economically, or does it, for better or worse, continue becoming a more progressive party?
While younger GOP voters are more socially and economically moderate, there's no evidence to suggest they're less prone to conspiracies, in fact more evidence suggests they're more likely to believe the election was stolen, and Trumpy candidates in 2022 primaries did better with them
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Ferguson97
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« Reply #4 on: April 23, 2023, 09:26:32 PM »

Honestly in my experience, younger Republicans are even bigger freaks than their older counterparts. I think that the party will become more extreme as time goes on.
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President Punxsutawney Phil
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« Reply #5 on: April 23, 2023, 09:33:51 PM »

Honestly in my experience, younger Republicans are even bigger freaks than their older counterparts. I think that the party will become more extreme as time goes on.
I feel that young Republicans are at least significantly more hardline on issues like guns. If that counts for anything.
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Skill and Chance
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« Reply #6 on: April 24, 2023, 04:19:35 PM »

My general thought is that demographic change will turn quite dramatically in favor of Republicans over the next decade or two.  At some point, virtually all of the young families with 2+ kids being devoutly religious and/or Southern will matter.  Republicans are also doing well enough at flipping recent immigrants that diverse immigration isn't a huge net gain for Dems either at this point.

As for the young R voters, they tend to be more moderate in some ways where they consider many issues that were once highly controversial in the 2010's to be settled (Obamacare, tariffs, probably Obergefell, etc.).  They are probably less socially conservative on average, but a substantial faction are hard right on gender issues  (i.e. believing the change in gender roles from 1970-2020 was a mistake).  This ties into the 1st point because if you still want to get married and start having kids in your 20's today, you are generally a partisan R.
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« Reply #7 on: April 24, 2023, 04:28:50 PM »

I have not seen any stats on this, but anecdotally ... my Republican-leaning friends have kids earlier AND have more kids than my Democratic-leaning friends.  Birth rate is a FAIRLY important thing demographically speaking.
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Shaula🏳️‍⚧️
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« Reply #8 on: April 25, 2023, 08:03:33 AM »

Honestly in my experience, younger Republicans are even bigger freaks than their older counterparts. I think that the party will become more extreme as time goes on.
On certain issues yes.
One interesting factoid is that Tucker Carlson consistently was the only FOX show to do decent with younger audiences. Clearly more Trumpy types speak better to them
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Skill and Chance
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« Reply #9 on: April 25, 2023, 08:52:38 AM »

A lot is riding on whether they can break through with non-white men.  If they do, then GA and VA never go Safe Dem and R's lock up the rest of the South for another generation.
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Southern Senator North Carolina Yankee
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« Reply #10 on: April 25, 2023, 01:28:59 PM »

Its so ironic considering all of the talk of the "New Era Enterprisers" by the likes of John Kasich and such back in 2016 and now young people are leading the GOP charge towards secular nationalism.

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« Reply #11 on: April 25, 2023, 02:26:59 PM »
« Edited: April 25, 2023, 02:41:35 PM by Vosem »

The old die and the young get older. How will generational change affect the Republican party? Now I'm not talking about how the general population changing will affect its ability to win, I'm more talking about within the party itself.

Polls show that Trump consistently does much better with younger Republican primary voters than DeSantis, and vice versa.

Polls do not necessarily show this with very high consistency, and in 2016 Trump tended to do worse with younger voters, albeit with very strong regional differences; he did slightly better in New England states the younger a voter was, but in the West even in places he won landslides his support with Republicans under 40 was basically nonexistent. (I think better polls tend to show Trump weaker with younger voters, and I expect that whatever the truth is the patterns will probably be regionally divided -- because they were in 2016.)

Younger GOP voters are more likely to be more moderate on social issues, but at the same time are more likely than older Republicans to be invested in the sorts of culture war battles that often begin online.

Younger Republicans are certainly less hardline overall on issues like abortion, drugs, and gay marriage, which is downstream from being less religious. "The sort of culture war battles that often begin online" feels too non-specific for me to comment.

They are less economically hardliner than older Republicans,

This is extremely false. Younger Republicans have consistently voted for more fiscally hardline candidates, like Paul in '12 and Cruz in '16, and Pew tends to show them having more consistently fiscally hardline positions than older voters.

and notably they are WAY more isolationist/non-interventionist than older Republicans, having a massive polling divide over Ukraine aid.

This is probably true at the moment, but in general you often have enormous turnarounds on foreign policy issues over the course of a decade; consider that Republicans polled as broadly interventionist in the 1980s, isolationist in the 1990s, and interventionist again in the 2000s. I think we don't have a good idea of what the GOP's position on foreign policy will look like 10 years from now, much less looking further into the future.

Overall with generational change, the party seems to be heading in a more moderate direction in some ways, but a more Trumpy and populist direction in others.

How do you think this will affect the party heading into the future?

Overall the party is half of society, so it's going to be less white and less religious almost by default. (Though relative to the societal average note that these gaps could grow; if mainstream society is getting more secular, but an evangelical counterculture is growing and mostly loyal to the GOP, then the pattern one imagines is the median voter secularizing a lot, but the median GOP voter secularizing only a little. The difference between them might well grow). Beyond that probably both parties will be much lower-trust organizations down the road. Beyond that the GOP is still getting more ideologically fiscally conservative, and it's hard to imagine that trend reversing absent either a very large societal crisis forcing new perspectives on government activity (think a world war, or a larger pandemic than COVID), or issue shifts associated with having a much older population dependent on pensions.

I'm more curious as to what happens with the Democrats. Does formerly Republican big money donors infiltrate their party pushing them to the right economically, or does it, for better or worse, continue becoming a more progressive party?

Continued declining trust in institutions, and the likelihood of peak educational enrollment being hit in the 2020s, is going to cause a crisis in the Democratic Party; it is already the case that there are huge culture gaps between Democratic politicians under the age of 60 or so and their voters. I think in its general style it will come to resemble the modern GOP more, particularly as it is forced into an Overton Window which is downstream of SCOTUS decisions on the administrative state. My expectation here is that the GOP is going to keep moving right on regulations/taxes, and that to some extent the Democratic party will be dragged along with it, though it will remain far to the left of the GOP. 'Big money donors' aren't what's pushing the parties right, though; it's the right's general ability to evince a worldview which is compelling to those who are cut off from mainstream American educated culture.

I have not seen any stats on this, but anecdotally ... my Republican-leaning friends have kids earlier AND have more kids than my Democratic-leaning friends.  Birth rate is a FAIRLY important thing demographically speaking.

There are statistics on this. The conservative fertility advantage emerged in the 1990s, was fairly small for several decades, but began growing rapidly after circa 2015, and is now very large. I can go hunt for my source, but 2015 was the year in which 'fraction of births to white mothers' hit a trough; it has since been rising, and in the 2020s is again a majority of births. The second derivative of the demographics rates chart looks quite favorable for the GOP. (Of course another question here is retention rates).

Note that this is another way in which 'GOP culture' is becoming increasingly different from the American mainstream, though.

Honestly in my experience, younger Republicans are even bigger freaks than their older counterparts. I think that the party will become more extreme as time goes on.
I feel that young Republicans are at least significantly more hardline on issues like guns. If that counts for anything.

Yeah. I can't find my source on this, but while there's very little generation gap on 'normal' gun issues like background checks and handguns, if you go to 'gun extremism' issues -- like legalizing automatic weapons -- then you get that this is an unheard-of position among old voters but a majority position among pro-gun voters under 35. I think it is possible that the gun debate will shift to an entirely new field of issues (like legalizing much more dangerous weapons than AR-15s, or deliberately spreading gun rights around the globe, as some GOP politicians have advocated and as I've, purely anecdotally, often heard advocated by young Republicans for how nonexistent of an idea it is in the general public sphere), in which you might see left-wing victories. That'll require capitulation on the current set of gun issues, though.

My general thought is that demographic change will turn quite dramatically in favor of Republicans over the next decade or two.  At some point, virtually all of the young families with 2+ kids being devoutly religious and/or Southern will matter.  Republicans are also doing well enough at flipping recent immigrants that diverse immigration isn't a huge net gain for Dems either at this point.

On the one hand, it's extremely underrated that one of the most powerful predictors of trending right in the post-2016 era has been "exposure to non-English-language news outlets". On the other hand, even if you take quite optimistic projections of ideological retention rate, I think the earliest you'd see a real impact from birthrate differentials is in the 2040s, when the first post-2015 births start reaching voting age, and in practice it'll probably take longer than that. And who knows what the issues will be by then. (Although the first inklings can be seen already -- the difference is largest in wealthy areas and it's already a stereotype of the 2020s that in wealthy areas the parents tend to be far to the right of the school board, which is elected by the community as a whole.) Also I suspect that, relative to society as a whole, the GOP hit a trough with young voters in the 2008 cycle and they're unlikely to vote that far left again.

As for the young R voters, they tend to be more moderate in some ways where they consider many issues that were once highly controversial in the 2010's to be settled (Obamacare, tariffs, probably Obergefell, etc.).

Obamacare is not at all a settled issue; the next GOP trifecta will at least try to repeal it, essentially no matter who the POTUS is. Tariffs are an issue that changes generationally; it was an issue in the 1800s and it'll probably still be an issue in the 2100s. I think gay marriage is settled in the court of public opinion but I'm not at all sure that a future harder-right SCOTUS majority -- which given Senate makeup probably will be coming about -- won't want to revisit Obergefell at some point, especially if we have further controversies about marriage definitions (like for polygamy).

Honestly in my experience, younger Republicans are even bigger freaks than their older counterparts. I think that the party will become more extreme as time goes on.

I think that you are a high-trust person and you are correct that younger Republicans have much less trust in institutions than older Republicans, leading to greater divergence from mainstream educated culture (which you represent). I think you are broadly correct that they will get more extreme in this sense. I think this is something happening to American society as a whole, though, and Democrats will struggle not to at least begin drifting in this direction. Not to harp one poll (particularly an issue poll, which are always suspect), but note that one of the top topics in US General Discussion today is a poll showing a decline in belief in climate change among Democrats. IDK if that's real, but the energies that want to reject the sources of consensus understanding exist everywhere and Democrats will be forced to throw them some sort of bones if they wish to remain competitive.
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Skill and Chance
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« Reply #12 on: April 25, 2023, 03:02:07 PM »
« Edited: April 25, 2023, 03:14:41 PM by Skill and Chance »

The old die and the young get older. How will generational change affect the Republican party? Now I'm not talking about how the general population changing will affect its ability to win, I'm more talking about within the party itself.

Polls show that Trump consistently does much better with younger Republican primary voters than DeSantis, and vice versa.

Polls do not necessarily show this with very high consistency, and in 2016 Trump tended to do worse with younger voters, albeit with very strong regional differences; he did slightly better in New England states the younger a voter was, but in the West even in places he won landslides his support with Republicans under 40 was basically nonexistent. (I think better polls tend to show Trump weaker with younger voters, and I expect that whatever the truth is the patterns will probably be regionally divided -- because they were in 2016.)

Younger GOP voters are more likely to be more moderate on social issues, but at the same time are more likely than older Republicans to be invested in the sorts of culture war battles that often begin online.

Younger Republicans are certainly less hardline overall on issues like abortion, drugs, and gay marriage, which is downstream from being less religious. "The sort of culture war battles that often begin online" feels too non-specific for me to comment.

They are less economically hardliner than older Republicans,

This is extremely false. Younger Republicans have consistently voted for more fiscally hardline candidates, like Paul in '12 and Cruz in '16, and Pew tends to show them having more consistently fiscally hardline positions than older voters.

and notably they are WAY more isolationist/non-interventionist than older Republicans, having a massive polling divide over Ukraine aid.

This is probably true at the moment, but in general you often have enormous turnarounds on foreign policy issues over the course of a decade; consider that Republicans polled as broadly interventionist in the 1980s, isolationist in the 1990s, and interventionist again in the 2000s. I think we don't have a good idea of what the GOP's position on foreign policy will look like 10 years from now, much less looking further into the future.

Overall with generational change, the party seems to be heading in a more moderate direction in some ways, but a more Trumpy and populist direction in others.

How do you think this will affect the party heading into the future?

Overall the party is half of society, so it's going to be less white and less religious almost by default. (Though relative to the societal average note that these gaps could grow; if mainstream society is getting more secular, but an evangelical counterculture is growing and mostly loyal to the GOP, then the pattern one imagines is the median voter secularizing a lot, but the median GOP voter secularizing only a little. The difference between them might well grow). Beyond that probably both parties will be much lower-trust organizations down the road. Beyond that the GOP is still getting more ideologically fiscally conservative, and it's hard to imagine that trend reversing absent either a very large societal crisis forcing new perspectives on government activity (think a world war, or a larger pandemic than COVID), or issue shifts associated with having a much older population dependent on pensions.

I'm more curious as to what happens with the Democrats. Does formerly Republican big money donors infiltrate their party pushing them to the right economically, or does it, for better or worse, continue becoming a more progressive party?

Continued declining trust in institutions, and the likelihood of peak educational enrollment being hit in the 2020s, is going to cause a crisis in the Democratic Party; it is already the case that there are huge culture gaps between Democratic politicians under the age of 60 or so and their voters. I think in its general style it will come to resemble the modern GOP more, particularly as it is forced into an Overton Window which is downstream of SCOTUS decisions on the administrative state. My expectation here is that the GOP is going to keep moving right on regulations/taxes, and that to some extent the Democratic party will be dragged along with it, though it will remain far to the left of the GOP. 'Big money donors' aren't what's pushing the parties right, though; it's the right's general ability to evince a worldview which is compelling to those who are cut off from mainstream American educated culture.

I have not seen any stats on this, but anecdotally ... my Republican-leaning friends have kids earlier AND have more kids than my Democratic-leaning friends.  Birth rate is a FAIRLY important thing demographically speaking.

There are statistics on this. The conservative fertility advantage emerged in the 1990s, was fairly small for several decades, but began growing rapidly after circa 2015, and is now very large. I can go hunt for my source, but 2015 was the year in which 'fraction of births to white mothers' hit a trough; it has since been rising, and in the 2020s is again a majority of births. The second derivative of the demographics rates chart looks quite favorable for the GOP. (Of course another question here is retention rates).

Note that this is another way in which 'GOP culture' is becoming increasingly different from the American mainstream, though.

Honestly in my experience, younger Republicans are even bigger freaks than their older counterparts. I think that the party will become more extreme as time goes on.
I feel that young Republicans are at least significantly more hardline on issues like guns. If that counts for anything.

Yeah. I can't find my source on this, but while there's very little generation gap on 'normal' gun issues like background checks and handguns, if you go to 'gun extremism' issues -- like legalizing automatic weapons -- then you get that this is an unheard-of position among old voters but a majority position among pro-gun voters under 35. I think it is possible that the gun debate will shift to an entirely new field of issues (like legalizing much more dangerous weapons than AR-15s, or deliberately spreading gun rights around the globe, as some GOP politicians have advocated and as I've, purely anecdotally, often heard advocated by young Republicans for how nonexistent of an idea it is in the general public sphere), in which you might see left-wing victories. That'll require capitulation on the current set of gun issues, though.

My general thought is that demographic change will turn quite dramatically in favor of Republicans over the next decade or two.  At some point, virtually all of the young families with 2+ kids being devoutly religious and/or Southern will matter.  Republicans are also doing well enough at flipping recent immigrants that diverse immigration isn't a huge net gain for Dems either at this point.

On the one hand, it's extremely underrated that one of the most powerful predictors of trending right in the post-2016 era has been "exposure to non-English-language news outlets". On the other hand, even if you take quite optimistic projections of ideological retention rate, I think the earliest you'd see a real impact from birthrate differentials is in the 2040s, when the first post-2015 births start reaching voting age, and in practice it'll probably take longer than that. And who knows what the issues will be by then. (Although the first inklings can be seen already -- the difference is largest in wealthy areas and it's already a stereotype of the 2020s that in wealthy areas the parents tend to be far to the right of the school board, which is elected by the community as a whole.) Also I suspect that, relative to society as a whole, the GOP hit a trough with young voters in the 2008 cycle and they're unlikely to vote that far left again.

As for the young R voters, they tend to be more moderate in some ways where they consider many issues that were once highly controversial in the 2010's to be settled (Obamacare, tariffs, probably Obergefell, etc.).

Obamacare is not at all a settled issue; the next GOP trifecta will at least try to repeal it, essentially no matter who the POTUS is. Tariffs are an issue that changes generationally; it was an issue in the 1800s and it'll probably still be an issue in the 2100s. I think gay marriage is settled in the court of public opinion but I'm not at all sure that a future harder-right SCOTUS majority -- which given Senate makeup probably will be coming about -- won't want to revisit Obergefell at some point, especially if we have further controversies about marriage definitions (like for polygamy).

Honestly in my experience, younger Republicans are even bigger freaks than their older counterparts. I think that the party will become more extreme as time goes on.

I think that you are a high-trust person and you are correct that younger Republicans have much less trust in institutions than older Republicans, leading to greater divergence from mainstream educated culture (which you represent). I think you are broadly correct that they will get more extreme in this sense. I think this is something happening to American society as a whole, though, and Democrats will struggle not to at least begin drifting in this direction. Not to harp one poll (particularly an issue poll, which are always suspect), but note that one of the top topics in US General Discussion today is a poll showing a decline in belief in climate change among Democrats. IDK if that's real, but the energies that want to reject the sources of consensus understanding exist everywhere and Democrats will be forced to throw them some sort of bones if they wish to remain competitive.

The trouble in terms of political impact is that the "R's have 4 kids, D's have no kids" areas are very disproportionately megacities that vote 80%D/20%R today.  That's a very low baseline to build from and in the short-medium run, it just makes their coalition less and less geographically efficient.  In the near/medium term, the most likely positive impact for R's is 1. South Florida 2. keeping the  Houston/Dallas/San Antonio metros close enough to save Texas 3. maybe keeping Virginia interesting.   

However, the flip side of this is Dems seeding several small Western/Plains states with WFH techies and certain states becoming "abortion tourism" destinations after all surrounding areas ban (looking at you, Kansas).  That's why I don't think the impending permanent R senate/SCOTUS majority takes hold water anymore like they did pre-COVID.  So I'm not expecting an all R appointed SCOTUS anytime soon.  If anything, this is likely the R high water mark today. 

In the meantime, I do agree with you on much of the post-Great Society administrative state getting ruled unconstitutional, and this position being broadly popular.  Dems will adapt and handling more and more at the state level should help bring the overall political temperature down in the medium-long run.  In particular, this will make any kind of federal climate change policy beyond tech/infrastructure subsidies practically impossible.

As for Obamacare, the particulars may change, but it's been 13 years.  The idea of highly subsidized health care plans for poorer than average young people with preexisting conditions is baked in, IMO almost to the same degree as Medicare/Medicaid are baked in.  I could see it being remembered as the last great federal program of the post-New Deal era, but I would reasonably expect more of the details of how to arrange it get handed over to the states over time. 

Regarding Obergefell, there is about 1/3rd of the federal judiciary that would overturn it if they got to SCOTUS, but they have to get past the Collins/Murkowski/Sununu wing of the GOP first.  Maybe Dobbs is the first sign that the gender role traditionalist faction will win it all, but I doubt this after 2022 results.  Bostock IMO is more vulnerable, in part because Congress could just overrule it by rewriting that part of the law.
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« Reply #13 on: May 11, 2023, 03:12:08 PM »
« Edited: May 11, 2023, 03:22:22 PM by NE Senator Christian Man »

I think they'll become the party of the non-college-educated if they're not there already. I think it will ultimately move in a libertarian movement on social issues unless there's a religious revival or some unexpected realignment, as traditional values are not a winner for people under the age of 45. Economically speaking, I think it will remain very protectionist and immigration reductionist but it's hard to say whether it'll move left as it'll depend on who's in charge. But I doubt welfare (except for Obamacare) repeals/cuts would be popular but I doubt most party members would become progressives, probably center, maybe center-left at the most. I'm guessing it'll become more isolationist as well unless we enter an international incident or popular war in which American patriotism rises to levels not seen in decades in that case neoconservatism would make a swift comeback, although it's hard to tell whether it would be temporary or not.
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« Reply #14 on: May 12, 2023, 11:59:39 AM »

The trouble in terms of political impact is that the "R's have 4 kids, D's have no kids" areas are very disproportionately megacities that vote 80%D/20%R today.  That's a very low baseline to build from and in the short-medium run, it just makes their coalition less and less geographically efficient.  In the near/medium term, the most likely positive impact for R's is 1. South Florida 2. keeping the  Houston/Dallas/San Antonio metros close enough to save Texas 3. maybe keeping Virginia interesting.

I don't know that this is true; maps of white fertility tend to actually correspond pretty closely to 'GOP strength', although there's also just greater fertility in the Plains (especially) and Mountain West (less so).



One of the patterns is indeed that the conservative advantage grows the wealthier a community is (and you maybe see that with NJ marked a darker color on that map). But I don't know that wealthy communities with lots of kids are so disproportionately found in giant megacities, and I think that a big part of the effect will be rural areas in Plains states to some degree continuing to redden. (A county-by-county version of this map, which I'm struggling to find now, has lots of bleed from ND and SD into rural MN and IA; I think in those places there's still a while to go in terms of how far rural areas will trend Republican).

However, the flip side of this is Dems seeding several small Western/Plains states with WFH techies and certain states becoming "abortion tourism" destinations after all surrounding areas ban (looking at you, Kansas).  That's why I don't think the impending permanent R senate/SCOTUS majority takes hold water anymore like they did pre-COVID.  So I'm not expecting an all R appointed SCOTUS anytime soon.  If anything, this is likely the R high water mark today.

KS is outright losing population, and it doesn't actually do very well in terms of attracting college graduates to live there. There's been an enormous Democratic trend among the ones they have, but in the super-long-run, if anything MO might be likelier to reverse.



Among current small deeply-R states, I think the only one with a very left-wing in-migration pattern is Alaska -- which I can easily see being very Democratic in a few decades, to be sure. But I think that the Supreme Court will move in the direction of whatever party has a Senate majority most of the time, and it's really hard to see that being the Democrats without some absolutely enormous realignment. I don't think the Court will even stop getting more conservative -- not even start getting more-progressive, just halt -- until there's a very lengthy period of consistent left-wing Senate control.  

In the meantime, I do agree with you on much of the post-Great Society administrative state getting ruled unconstitutional, and this position being broadly popular.  Dems will adapt and handling more and more at the state level should help bring the overall political temperature down in the medium-long run.  In particular, this will make any kind of federal climate change policy beyond tech/infrastructure subsidies practically impossible.

We're on the same page here.

As for Obamacare, the particulars may change, but it's been 13 years.  The idea of highly subsidized health care plans for poorer than average young people with preexisting conditions is baked in, IMO almost to the same degree as Medicare/Medicaid are baked in.  I could see it being remembered as the last great federal program of the post-New Deal era, but I would reasonably expect more of the details of how to arrange it get handed over to the states over time.

At the state level it isn't that unusual for there to be cuts to Medicare/Medicaid, and these things often don't come with particular political penalties (on the Asa Hutchinson thread, see his cuts to Medicare in Arkansas). I think "Obamacare won't be repealed" verges on a bet that there won't be a Republican trifecta for another decade or so, or that if there will be one it'll be very different ideologically from the current GOP. I don't see it.  

Regarding Obergefell, there is about 1/3rd of the federal judiciary that would overturn it if they got to SCOTUS, but they have to get past the Collins/Murkowski/Sununu wing of the GOP first.  Maybe Dobbs is the first sign that the gender role traditionalist faction will win it all, but I doubt this after 2022 results.  Bostock IMO is more vulnerable, in part because Congress could just overrule it by rewriting that part of the law.

I don't think this would be popular, but if the Court continues moving right I think eventually there would be a case that overturns Obergefell.
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« Reply #15 on: May 21, 2023, 01:09:38 PM »
« Edited: May 21, 2023, 09:01:02 PM by MRS. MEE SUM CHU »

The trouble in terms of political impact is that the "R's have 4 kids, D's have no kids" areas are very disproportionately megacities that vote 80%D/20%R today.  That's a very low baseline to build from and in the short-medium run, it just makes their coalition less and less geographically efficient.  In the near/medium term, the most likely positive impact for R's is 1. South Florida 2. keeping the  Houston/Dallas/San Antonio metros close enough to save Texas 3. maybe keeping Virginia interesting.

I don't know that this is true; maps of white fertility tend to actually correspond pretty closely to 'GOP strength', although there's also just greater fertility in the Plains (especially) and Mountain West (less so).


One of the patterns is indeed that the conservative advantage grows the wealthier a community is (and you maybe see that with NJ marked a darker color on that map). But I don't know that wealthy communities with lots of kids are so disproportionately found in giant megacities, and I think that a big part of the effect will be rural areas in Plains states to some degree continuing to redden. (A county-by-county version of this map, which I'm struggling to find now, has lots of bleed from ND and SD into rural MN and IA; I think in those places there's still a while to go in terms of how far rural areas will trend Republican).

However, the flip side of this is Dems seeding several small Western/Plains states with WFH techies and certain states becoming "abortion tourism" destinations after all surrounding areas ban (looking at you, Kansas).  That's why I don't think the impending permanent R senate/SCOTUS majority takes hold water anymore like they did pre-COVID.  So I'm not expecting an all R appointed SCOTUS anytime soon.  If anything, this is likely the R high water mark today.

KS is outright losing population, and it doesn't actually do very well in terms of attracting college graduates to live there. There's been an enormous Democratic trend among the ones they have, but in the super-long-run, if anything MO might be likelier to reverse.



Among current small deeply-R states, I think the only one with a very left-wing in-migration pattern is Alaska -- which I can easily see being very Democratic in a few decades, to be sure. But I think that the Supreme Court will move in the direction of whatever party has a Senate majority most of the time, and it's really hard to see that being the Democrats without some absolutely enormous realignment. I don't think the Court will even stop getting more conservative -- not even start getting more-progressive, just halt -- until there's a very lengthy period of consistent left-wing Senate control.  

I agree with your implication that there isn't as much reason to suspect that higher fertility rates among nonwhite US residents would benefit Rs on net, even if those voters are less D than their lower-fertility counterparts of various backgrounds.

Fascinating to see how many states experience net "brain drain" of college graduates, and that OR and TN do better than the median state despite being neutral on this metric.

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« Reply #16 on: May 25, 2023, 02:37:23 AM »

I have not seen any stats on this, but anecdotally ... my Republican-leaning friends have kids earlier AND have more kids than my Democratic-leaning friends.  Birth rate is a FAIRLY important thing demographically speaking.

I wasn't aware that political affiliation was an inherited trait.

Lots of people disagree with their parents on politics. "Thanksgiving political arguments" is a universally-understood phenomenon.
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« Reply #17 on: May 25, 2023, 08:29:44 AM »

I thought younger GOP voters were more right wing than the olds? I don't see the makeup of the party moderating anytime soon. I think it will just lose more elections as the more radical base shrinks until it either dies off or it's forced to change. I only see the GOP doubling down on far right proposals even after the 2022 midterm embarassment.
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« Reply #18 on: May 25, 2023, 08:54:20 AM »
« Edited: May 25, 2023, 09:32:08 AM by Vosem »

I have not seen any stats on this, but anecdotally ... my Republican-leaning friends have kids earlier AND have more kids than my Democratic-leaning friends.  Birth rate is a FAIRLY important thing demographically speaking.

I wasn't aware that political affiliation was an inherited trait.

Lots of people disagree with their parents on politics. "Thanksgiving political arguments" is a universally-understood phenomenon.

Old-timey studies tend to show political ideology as 30-40% heritable, but more modern studies tend to show higher numbers, and it seems like there's evidence that the heritability has been increasing as political polarization rises. This makes sense to me -- as polarization increases, people must be increasingly unwilling to marry someone of the opposite political preference, and children are increasingly likely to be taught to regard political affiliation as a core value rather than something conditional.

Welcome back to the forum, FTR.

I thought younger GOP voters were more right wing than the olds? I don't see the makeup of the party moderating anytime soon. I think it will just lose more elections as the more radical base shrinks until it either dies off or it's forced to change. I only see the GOP doubling down on far right proposals even after the 2022 midterm embarassment.

Probably only true on economic issues. I don't think there's very good evidence that the radical base is shrinking -- explicit campaigning on benefit cuts as something beneficial to society only dates to the 1990s, and the hyper-conservative political wing of the evangelical movement didn't really exist before the 1980s (although both of these things had ideological ancestors, I don't think there was an identifiably modern-socon presidential campaign before Robertson 1988, and I don't think Reagan/Bush ran against welfare nearly as explicitly and intensely as Gingrich/Dole did). The radical base itself is a pretty new phenomenon! (Its growth also seems substantially fueled by decline in trust in institutions, which started after Watergate in the 1970s and is still continuing; I've said before that I think the Democratic party's future affect will probably resemble the current Republican party's affect more than vice versa).
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Skill and Chance
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« Reply #19 on: May 25, 2023, 09:24:59 AM »
« Edited: May 25, 2023, 09:35:41 AM by Skill and Chance »

The trouble in terms of political impact is that the "R's have 4 kids, D's have no kids" areas are very disproportionately megacities that vote 80%D/20%R today.  That's a very low baseline to build from and in the short-medium run, it just makes their coalition less and less geographically efficient.  In the near/medium term, the most likely positive impact for R's is 1. South Florida 2. keeping the  Houston/Dallas/San Antonio metros close enough to save Texas 3. maybe keeping Virginia interesting.

I don't know that this is true; maps of white fertility tend to actually correspond pretty closely to 'GOP strength', although there's also just greater fertility in the Plains (especially) and Mountain West (less so).


One of the patterns is indeed that the conservative advantage grows the wealthier a community is (and you maybe see that with NJ marked a darker color on that map). But I don't know that wealthy communities with lots of kids are so disproportionately found in giant megacities, and I think that a big part of the effect will be rural areas in Plains states to some degree continuing to redden. (A county-by-county version of this map, which I'm struggling to find now, has lots of bleed from ND and SD into rural MN and IA; I think in those places there's still a while to go in terms of how far rural areas will trend Republican).

However, the flip side of this is Dems seeding several small Western/Plains states with WFH techies and certain states becoming "abortion tourism" destinations after all surrounding areas ban (looking at you, Kansas).  That's why I don't think the impending permanent R senate/SCOTUS majority takes hold water anymore like they did pre-COVID.  So I'm not expecting an all R appointed SCOTUS anytime soon.  If anything, this is likely the R high water mark today.

KS is outright losing population, and it doesn't actually do very well in terms of attracting college graduates to live there. There's been an enormous Democratic trend among the ones they have, but in the super-long-run, if anything MO might be likelier to reverse.



Among current small deeply-R states, I think the only one with a very left-wing in-migration pattern is Alaska -- which I can easily see being very Democratic in a few decades, to be sure. But I think that the Supreme Court will move in the direction of whatever party has a Senate majority most of the time, and it's really hard to see that being the Democrats without some absolutely enormous realignment. I don't think the Court will even stop getting more conservative -- not even start getting more-progressive, just halt -- until there's a very lengthy period of consistent left-wing Senate control.   

I agree with your implication that there isn't as much reason to suspect that higher fertility rates among nonwhite US residents would benefit Rs on net, even if those voters are less D than their lower-fertility counterparts of various backgrounds.

Fascinating to see how many states experience net "brain drain" of college graduates, and that OR and TN do better than the median state despite being neutral on this metric.



Regarding the 1st map, that's more what I was getting at- that the GOP has the most to gain (relatively) where non-conservative birthrates are at their lowest.  However, in many of these areas, it's the white population (particularly white college grads) that is the most ideologically liberal (if not yet the most Democratic-voting).  Therefore, I don't think a map of non-Hispanic white birthrates really addresses the question.  My thesis is more that NYC and L.A. could come to be dominated by devoutly religious non-white groups with large families over the next generation or so as the white liberals there generally don't have kids.  Everyone is still having a couple  kids on the Plains (and in Texas and the Mormon states), presumably including the local liberals.     

Not sure how much the second map really correlates with political trends, though?  Several of the dark blue states are clearly getting more Dem while Tennessee and North Carolina aren't clearly getting more Dem.  New York takes in more new college grads than almost anywhere else, but it's quite clearly getting more R!  Florida also doesn't look like a state trending dramatically right on this map.   Vosem, are you as sanguine for Texas Dems as the yellow coloring would suggest? 

Nonetheless, it is interesting that Michigan is holding its own with college grad retention and it didn't zoom right in the Trump era like many (myself included) expected.  Finally, I'll bet a lot of the college grads New England and New Jersey lose to NYC and MD/VA lose to DC stay for a just a few years and end up back in the suburbs when they are having-kids age.  In any event, in most states, between 1/4 and 1/3 of people graduated college, so this probably isn't the primary driver of election outcomes...

If it does end up being the primary driver of election outcomes, then yes, taken literally, Dems would be all in on the 10-15 biggest states and likely end up with the EC advantage while Reps would probably hold the senate for 30 years:



     
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« Reply #20 on: May 25, 2023, 09:53:40 AM »

Well, note that that map is where people tend to move some number of years after graduation, not 'where do all college-educated people move'; the latter would show more migration towards the Sun Belt.



This map is from 2016, and the Axios map I posted above is from after COVID (2022), but there indeed might be a difference as to where people move mid-career as opposed to where they go to start it; it seems like there's a preference over time for moving to warmer areas. I think this map is already out-of-date, and the changes to it make it resemble the Axios map more; the Axios map is also probably a preview of what I think trends will look like in the future, rather than what trends are now. (Also, it would take a lot to make TN vote Democratic! Also, TN is still net losing college graduates on that map! Also, I don't really think a division based on education levels is very long-run sustainable!)

But, yes, if something like current patterns continues for another decade or so TX will probably flip blue. (But it also starts to make the sustainability of Democratic trends in places like AZ/VA look questionable).

Note that, because this codes people's state of origin as "where they went to college", states that attract lots of out-of-state college students (particularly VT/NH come to mind here, but perhaps also VA?) are disadvantaged by the metric; I think VA would look much better if you coded state of origin as "where a student went to high school". OTOH lots of out-of-state students go to college in CO, so CO appearing here as...the single strongest state in the dataset, after DC, is totally bonkers. (DC's own performance is also bonkers, since many people travel there to get educated). It must be the case that CO is continuing to very rapidly become much more educated; this makes the 2020 trend much less surprising. No other state puts in a performance remotely like CO's, and only NY and WA are really even comparable. (And CO also puts in the strongest performance of any state on the older NYT map about the migration patterns of older college graduates! Amazing stuff.)

It's also interesting to note that these states don't really line up with which ones are growing overall. CA, NY, and IL are all likely to lose House seats at the next reapportionment, but they're all gaining college graduates looking to start their careers. FL has insane growth (and actually if you look through the data FL is very good at keeping college graduates who graduate there -- in fact it's third nationally for doing this -- but it's stunningly bad at attracting out-of-state college graduates to start their careers there. This fails to square pretty hard with my own experience -- I know multiple recent college graduates who have moved to FL -- but then my circles are consistently weirdly Ameriright in ways that don't really extrapolate to the whole country. But I'd take this whole dataset with a grain of salt).
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Skill and Chance
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« Reply #21 on: May 25, 2023, 12:07:36 PM »

Another interesting aspect of this is (mostly) white groups with cultural distinctives leading to much higher than average birthrates.  What generally happens is that birthrates trend quickly toward the national average once a distinctive population reaches a certain scale- the Mormons are perhaps the clearest example.   But by the time this happened, the Mormons functionally gained political control of 2 states and meaningful influence in a couple of others!  For example, could a couple of rural states eventually become >20% Amish?  I get that it's unreasonable for the US as a whole to become 20% Amish no matter how high the rural Amish birthrate goes, because going to that scale would mean running out of land and require adopting city life, but there's no reason they couldn't become a huge influence in a couple of rural states if the birthrate for the rest of the population falls low enough and more people move away than move in.
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« Reply #22 on: May 25, 2023, 06:05:59 PM »

It depends on what we're talking about by young.  If we're talking about Republicans who aren't old enough to vote such as nearly half of the iGeneration, then the Democrats may have bitten off more than they can chew.  Schools are indoctrinating our youth with their transgender agendas and its only annoying students from conservative families.  The leftist agenda of the teachers unions is doing the opposite of what it was intended to do.  Young Republicans will rebel against the establishment of the older and more liberal millennials who are parents and currently run the schools.  I'm not sure about 2020, but in 2012, and 2016 Romney and then Trump won the 18-20 vote.  We are heading for an era where Republicans don't have the demographics to keep up at the national level, but it won't last long.  Nothing in politics ever lasts.
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« Reply #23 on: May 25, 2023, 08:11:14 PM »

I still think we're understating the medium-long political impacts of the "ruralization" of the laptop class that has been underway for the past 3 years, particularly in the Mountain West.  Similarly, R's and R-leaning employers have been flooding into Texas and Florida.  Then you have abortion, which is giving voters in places historically more Republican than culturally conservative like the Plains (particularly if it stays mostly legal in KS and NE into the long run) and Northern New England second thoughts, while they gain votes in places more culturally conservative than Republican, megacities generally and pretty much the entire cultural South save for Atlanta (even Virginia isn't the Dem cakewalk many expected after 2020).  The abortion bans could also help lock in the structurally higher Southern birthrates.  This is why I'm quite contrarian and bullish on Senate Dems in the long run while also being sanguine for R's in the the presidential PV and probably the House as they are forced to pivot more and more toward big state concerns. 
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« Reply #24 on: May 26, 2023, 01:25:45 AM »
« Edited: May 26, 2023, 01:09:37 PM by Хahar 🤔 »

Well, note that that map is where people tend to move some number of years after graduation, not 'where do all college-educated people move'; the latter would show more migration towards the Sun Belt.



This map is from 2016, and the Axios map I posted above is from after COVID (2022), but there indeed might be a difference as to where people move mid-career as opposed to where they go to start it; it seems like there's a preference over time for moving to warmer areas. I think this map is already out-of-date, and the changes to it make it resemble the Axios map more; the Axios map is also probably a preview of what I think trends will look like in the future, rather than what trends are now. (Also, it would take a lot to make TN vote Democratic! Also, TN is still net losing college graduates on that map! Also, I don't really think a division based on education levels is very long-run sustainable!)

But, yes, if something like current patterns continues for another decade or so TX will probably flip blue. (But it also starts to make the sustainability of Democratic trends in places like AZ/VA look questionable).

Note that, because this codes people's state of origin as "where they went to college", states that attract lots of out-of-state college students (particularly VT/NH come to mind here, but perhaps also VA?) are disadvantaged by the metric; I think VA would look much better if you coded state of origin as "where a student went to high school". OTOH lots of out-of-state students go to college in CO, so CO appearing here as...the single strongest state in the dataset, after DC, is totally bonkers. (DC's own performance is also bonkers, since many people travel there to get educated). It must be the case that CO is continuing to very rapidly become much more educated; this makes the 2020 trend much less surprising. No other state puts in a performance remotely like CO's, and only NY and WA are really even comparable. (And CO also puts in the strongest performance of any state on the older NYT map about the migration patterns of older college graduates! Amazing stuff.)

It's also interesting to note that these states don't really line up with which ones are growing overall. CA, NY, and IL are all likely to lose House seats at the next reapportionment, but they're all gaining college graduates looking to start their careers. FL has insane growth (and actually if you look through the data FL is very good at keeping college graduates who graduate there -- in fact it's third nationally for doing this -- but it's stunningly bad at attracting out-of-state college graduates to start their careers there. This fails to square pretty hard with my own experience -- I know multiple recent college graduates who have moved to FL -- but then my circles are consistently weirdly Ameriright in ways that don't really extrapolate to the whole country. But I'd take this whole dataset with a grain of salt).

First off, looking through the paper your previous chart is taken from, I notice that the data are aggregated at the CBSA level, so I'm not sure how they were separated out to create the state-level map. The appendices describing the methodology don't say. This is significant because it's unclear if someone who lives and works in Jersey City whose LinkedIn page lists them as "New York City Area" would be properly classified under New Jersey, or even whether this would be able to accurately account for commutes that cross state lines. (Presumably most people list where they work on LinkedIn, not where they live.)

In part for this reason, I'm not inclined to draw any conclusions from what the chart says about Virginia. Like all the states to its north, Virginia experiences a fair amount of attrition to New York, but, in addition to that, Virginia's largest metropolitan area is not centered within the state. Plenty of graduates from Virginia colleges work in the District of Columbia or in that broader metropolitan area; this does not mean that Virginia has lost these graduates, especially if they continue to live or work in the state. (If my hypothesis is right and this study treats anyone whose LinkedIn profile says "Washington, D.C. Area" as being in DC, then that would also explain the otherwise remarkable DC figure: there are a lot more people who work in the region then there are people who graduated from colleges in the District.)

As regards Florida, I am always taken aback at the South Florida metro area having more people than the Atlanta metro area, because I don't really know anyone who lives there. (When I spent a night there on a layover late last year, I had to get a hotel, whereas in almost any other city I might stop over in I'd have a friend to offer me a couch to sleep on.) I do know three people who moved to Florida relatively soon after graduation, but all three were in fields with an unusually small number of job openings (baseball, print journalism, medical physics) and none stayed more than a few years before moving elsewhere. None of them came to Florida already having friends there, which is key to understanding the data.

The reason that Tennessee loses graduates on aggregate is because quite a few Tennessee graduates move to Atlanta. The reason that Indiana loses an enormous number of graduates is because of the annual flood of Indiana graduates to Chicago. By contrast, there are no large colleges outside of Florida that are anywhere near a major Florida city. Most people moving to Florida after graduation will have to do it alone, without the benefit of a large number of friends from college making the move with them and forming a ready-made community in the new city. The result is that Florida graduates stay but other graduates don't come in large numbers. The same factors hold for California, but California has so many job opportunities for educated workers that my guess is that this effect is washed out. In the case of Colorado, the state is so irresistible to 23-year-olds that this effect is certainly washed out.
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