News / USA

Changing US Population Helped Obama

Obama / 2012 VictoryObama / 2012 Victory
x
Obama / 2012 Victory
Obama / 2012 Victory
President Barack Obama won re-election Tuesday, thanks in large part to the same political coalition that helped him first get elected four years ago - women, minorities and young voters.  

The winning Obama coalition is a reflection of the evolving nature of the U.S. population; less white, more diverse and constantly shifting.

American University historian Allan Lichtman long ago predicted the president would win a second term because of the voting coalition he first put together in 2008 and expanded on this year.

“Women and minorities put Barack Obama over the top and there should be a big, huge red-letter warning sign for Republicans that they can not win just with their white-Protestant base.  We are increasingly becoming a non-white nation.  Women are the majority of the electorate today," said  Lichtman.

The Obama campaign won most of the key battleground states where the election was fought because it did an effective job of identifying supporters and making sure they got out to vote.

Exit polls of voters leaving the voting booths found whites made up 72 percent of the electorate this year, a drop from four years ago.  African-American voters remained at 13 percent, while the Hispanic vote grew from nine percent in 2008 to 10 percent this year.
 
With their growing power within the Democratic coalition, Hispanic activists are likely to demand action on comprehensive immigration reform in a second Obama term, something that fell by the wayside in the first term.

Republican strategist Ford O’Connell is among those who believes his party must do a better job of reaching out to Hispanic voters to keep his party viable in the future.

“I think the Republican Party would be very wise to take part in that conversation about immigration reform, because I see a real opportunity here for the Republican Party to make inroads with Hispanics, particularly Mexican-Americans," said O’Connell.

The Democratic coalition may have carried President Obama into a second term, but Washington remains politically divided.  Democrats did keep their hold on the Senate, but Republicans held their majority in the House of Representatives, and in some ways the political battle lines appear little changed from what they were before the election.

Democratic strategist Christy Setzer says it is likely some form of political gridlock will continue.

“I am not sure that really affects what the Republicans are going to do in Congress.  I believe that they have seen a strategy of obstructionism that they think is effective in ginning up [rallying] their base [supporters].  So at least in the short term I do not see too much changing in terms of [political] polarization," said  Setzer.

But now that the election is over, some analysts believe there is at least a chance both sides will be more willing to give bipartisan cooperation a try.

Historian Allan Lichtman says he saw a message in the election results for both parties.

“If there is any one mandate that has come out loud and clear from this election it is that people are sick and tired of gridlock, and the country is facing big problems, and it is not going to be solved by the Republican House [of Representatives] and the Democratic president bickering and quarreling with one another," he said.

Congress and the president must find common ground by January in order to avoid the enactment of severe budget cuts and tax increases that could result in another unwanted shock to the nation’s economic recovery.

You May Like

Could Nemtsov Threaten Putin in Death as in Life?

Dynamic and debonair opposition leader had supported liberal economic reforms, criticized Russian president's aggression in Ukraine More

Oil Smuggling Highlights Challenges in Shutting Down IS Finances

Pentagon spokesman says Islamic State 'certainly continues to get revenue from the oil industry black market' but that airstrikes have made a dent More

India Focuses on Infrastructure, Investment to Propel Economy

Government expects economy to grow at 8 to 8.5 percent in next fiscal year More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
US Supreme Court Hears Hijab Discrimination Casei
X
Katherine Gypson
February 25, 2015 11:30 PM
The U.S. Supreme Court has heard opening arguments in a workplace religious discrimination case that examines whether a clothing store can refuse to hire a young woman for wearing the headscarf she says is a symbol of her Muslim faith. Katherine Gypson reports from the Supreme Court.
Video

Video US Supreme Court Hears Hijab Discrimination Case

The U.S. Supreme Court has heard opening arguments in a workplace religious discrimination case that examines whether a clothing store can refuse to hire a young woman for wearing the headscarf she says is a symbol of her Muslim faith. Katherine Gypson reports from the Supreme Court.
Video

Video Falling Gas Prices Hurt Nascent Illinois Hydraulic Fracturing Industry

Falling oil prices are helping consumers purchase cheaper petroleum at the pump. But that’s made hydraulic fracturing or “fracking” less economically viable for the companies in the United States invested in the process. VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports on one Midwestern town that was hoping to change its fortunes by cashing in on the next big U.S. oil boom.
Video

Video Fighting in Sudan's South Kordofan Fuels Mass Displacement

Heavy fighting in Sudan's South Kordofan state is causing hundreds of thousands to flee into uncertain conditions. Local aid organizations estimate as many as 400,000 civilians have been internally displaced since the conflict began more than three years ago, while another 250,000 have fled across the border to refugee camps in South Sudan. VOA's Adam Bailes reports.
Video

Video Lao Dam Project Runs Into Opposition

A Lao dam project on a section of the Mekong River is drawing opposition from local fishermen, international environmental groups and neighboring countries. VOA's Say Mony visited the region to investigate the concerns. Colin Lovett narrates.
Video

Video A Filmmaker Discovers Her Biracial Identity in "Little White Lie

Lacey Schwartz grew up in an upper middle-class Jewish family, in a town in upstate New York where almost everyone she knew was white. She assumed that she was, as well. Her recent documentary, Little White Lie, tells the story of how she uncovered the secret of her true racial background. VOA’s Carolyn Weaver has more on the film.
Video

Video Deep Under Antarctic Ice Sheet, Life!

With the end of summer in the Southern hemisphere, the Antarctic research season is over. Scientists from Northern Illinois University are back in their laboratory after a 3-month expedition on the Ross Ice Shelf, the world’s largest floating ice sheet. As VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports, they hope to find clues to explain the dynamics of the rapidly melting ice and its impact on sea level rise.
Video

Video US-Cuba Normalization Talks Resume Friday

Negotiations aimed at normalizing diplomatic relations between the U.S. and Cuba resume Friday. On the table: lifting a half-century trade embargo and easing banking and travel restrictions. There's opposition in Congress, but some analysts say there may be sufficient political and economic incentives in both nations for a potential breakthrough this year. VOA's Mil Arcega reports.
Video

Video Pakistan's Deadline For SIM Registration Has Cellphone Users Scrambling

Pakistani cell phone users have until midnight Thursday to register their SIM cards, or their service will be cut off. While some privacy experts worry about government intrusion, many Pakistanis are just worried about keeping their phone lines open. VOA Deewa reporter Arshad Muhmand has more from Peshawar.
Video

Video Myanmar Warns Factory Workers to End Strikes

Outside Myanmar's main city Yangon, thousands of workers walked off their jobs earlier this month demanding a doubling of their wages, pay raises after a year and input from labor unions on industrial regulations. Since Friday, the standoff has grown more tense as police moved in to disrupt the sit-ins, resulting in clashes that injured people from both sides. VOA correspondent Steve Herman visited industrial zones which have become a focus of Myanmar's fledgling workers rights movement.
Video

Video Oscar Winners Do More Than Thank the Academy

The Academy Awards presentation is Hollywood’s night to reward the best movies from the previous year. It’s typically a lot of glitter, a lot of thank you’s, a lot of speeches. But many of this year’s speeches carried messages beyond the thank you's. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti takes a look.

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More