NationalJournal.com – White Flight – Friday, January 7, 2011
January 7, 2011 § Leave a comment
President Obama’s path to a second term may rely on states shaped by the same social forces he embodies.
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Previously unreleased results from the 2010 exit polls show a stark gap between whites and minorities and a smaller but still significant difference between blue- and white-collar whites.
THE NEW COLOR LINE
After Election Day, several media outlets released exit-poll data breaking down the contrasting level of support among white and minority voters for Republican and Democratic congressional candidates. But they did not publish results that separated by race the responses to questions that measured attitudes about Obama’s performance, the state of the economy, the national agenda, and the way voters described their own ideology. It was those additional race-specific results that National Journal recently purchased from Edison Research, the organization that conducts the exit surveys. These polls provide an unusually valuable lens through which to assess such attitudes, because surveyors interview many more respondents (17,504 in the national survey this year) than in a typical poll.
From every angle, the exit-poll results reveal a new color line: a consistent chasm between the attitudes of whites and minorities. The gap begins with preferences in the election.