Skip to comments.Pew Poll: Obama Struggling With White Voters
Posted on 04/08/2011 7:20:56 AM PDT by Red Badger
The latest Pew Research Center national poll released today underscores how slender a beachhead President Obama has established among whites more than two years into his presidency.
In his 2008 election, Obama ran well only among two groups of whites -- young people and white women with at least a four year college education, two groups that are generally receptive to government activism. In the 2010 GOP landslide, those groups stuck with Democrats relatively more loyally than the rest of the white electorate, but the party's support tumbled even among them.
Figures provided to National Journal by Pew from the new survey suggests that Obama has recaptured ground Democrats lost with well-educated white women in 2010-but that he is still struggling with every other segment of the white electorate, including younger voters.
These results underscore the basic dynamic looming over the 2012 presidential race. On the one hand, Obama will benefit from a wave of diversity that has increased the minority share of the population in every state since 2000, according to recently released results from the 2010 Census.
On the other, polls consistently suggest he may struggle to match the modest 43 percent support among whites that he drew in 2008, according to the Edison Research exit poll. In the 2010 mid-term election, according to the Edison exit poll, just 37 percent of whites backed Democrats in House races, while 60 percent supported Republicans-the highest share of the white vote Republicans have won in a House election in the history of modern polling. Obama's approval rating among all whites in the Pew survey stands at a similar 38 percent.
The poll, which surveyed 1,507 adults from March 30 to April 3, put Obama's overall approval rating at 47 percent with 45 percent disapproving. The survey had a margin of error of plus or minus 3.5 percentage points.
Obama's best group in the white electorate remains well-educated women, who tend toward more liberal positions on social issues as well as greater receptivity to government activism. In the new poll, 56 percent of college-educated white women said they approved of Obama's performance. That's a slight improvement from the 52 percent of such women who voted for him in 2008, according to the Edison Research exit poll. It's also a big improvement from the 43 percent of college-plus white women who backed Democratic House candidates in 2010. (Well-educated white women provided substantially more support for Democrats in some key 2010 Senate races, including contests in Colorado, California and Wisconsin.)
The rest of the white electorate remains deeply cool to Obama, the Pew survey found. Just 38 percent of college-educated white men said they approve of the president. That's down from the 42 percent of the vote he won from those men in 2008, and only a slight improvement from the miniscule 35 percent House Democrats won with them in 2010.
Obama's approval rating in the Pew survey stood at just 34 percent among white women without a college education-the so-called waitress moms. Democrats have often had high hopes for capturing those economically-strained, culturally-conservative women, but the new result only underscores their consistent Republican tilt: Obama won just 41 percent of them in 2008, and House Democrats just 34 percent of them in 2010.
The toughest group for Obama remains white men without a college-education-the blue-collar workers who constituted the foundation of the Democratic electoral coalition from 1932 to 1968. Just 35 percent of them said they approve of his performance in the Pew poll. That's below even the 39 percent of them Obama carried in 2008, though slightly above the Democrats' microscopic 32 percent showing with them in 2010, according to the exit poll. All of these results suggest that the gap between Obama's support among college-educated white women and non-college white men-which stood at a formidable 13 percentage points in 2008-might easily widen even further in 2012.
Looking at the white electorate by age shows fewer fissures -- but one bright red flag for the president. In the Pew survey, Obama's approval rating among white seniors stands at just 38 percent; he draws just 35 percent approval from those aged 50-64 and 40 percent from those 30-49. Generally, that's slightly, but not markedly, below his support from those groups in 2008. Perhaps the most ominous trend for Obama in the Pew survey is that just 41 percent of whites under 30 said they approved of his performance; in 2008, he won 54 percent of those younger whites. In the 2010 exit poll, Democrats' support among those whites sagged to 45 percent, but even that remained much higher than their backing among older whites.
Almost as troubling for Obama is his showing among Hispanics in the poll. Just 54 percent of Hispanics in the Pew survey said they approved of his performance, a finding that echoes the results in recent Gallup polls. Given Obama's persistent difficulties in the white community, he can't afford much softening among Hispanics, who gave him two-thirds of their votes last time and represent a steadily growing share of the population in key swing states from Nevada and Colorado to North Carolina and Virginia, and even Iowa and New Hampshire.
It's unclear, though, if any Republican will emerge from the GOP nominating process positioned to benefit from that cooling-or whether, as some conservative Hispanic activists fear, pressure from the conservative primary electorate will tug them toward such uncompromising positions on immigration that they alienate Latino voters otherwise open to a change.
Looks like the young people and white women with at least a four year college education know now that Obama isn’t only clueless he’s dangerous.
Gee, I wonder why?
Could it be that Obama and Holder have spent two years setting up and supporting a ‘Black Activist’ us against them, Black against White environment.
Congratulations Obama, it worked.
Everyone thought they were voting for a moderate Liberal with dark skin. A ‘nice guy’. They wound up with a guy who is half Malcolm X and half Joseph Stalin with the mentality of a teenager with ADD.
“Hey, after the party, let’s go shoot some hoops man. Then we’ll hit the links before our trip to Rio! Rio baby!”
If you want some fun read the 150 some comments after Brownstein’s article. And these are from readers of The National Journal and its ‘Red’ journalism.
I kind of liked General Bullright’s comments:
“I didn’t used to be a racist, but Obama made me that way! I voted for him, but now, I think he should be shining shoes down at the barber shop!”
I remember someone here on FR photoshopped Obama shining shoes.
Can we please all remember that Obama did not win by that much? Just a few percentage points? His radical agenda already tips a re-run against him. He is toast.
Well educated white women? Try well propagandized or brain washed white women.
The damn Lamestream media acted as if the whole country was behind him....BULL PUCKIE!
Look at the areas they tend to get degrees in, and the sort of indoctrination dished out in those programs.
Hint: We’re not talking business, engineering, and hard sciences.
Youre 100% correct I’m Hispanic, conservative, and not for illegal immigration. Those lawbreakers give us a bad name, of course when I get called a racist by liberals because I don’t support illegal immigration, I point out the fact that I’m half Latino they still don’t care I’m a racist anyway. Ugh so stupid.
I have been on double secret probation by the mods for being too graphic in my expressions of how I pray about Obama.
Why are well educated white women stupid?
Many, not all. Because the principal concern of the modern American education racket is leftist indoctrination, not critical thinking.
I had a Mexican girlfriend back in the ‘80s. She and her whole family were here as resident aliens, working on their naturalization. They had a licensed family business as carpenters and contractors.
She was -INCENSED- over the amnesty deal back then. Mojados who had merely smuggled themselves over were treated with more deference and got quicker results than her and her family, who had respected and abided by all of the immigration laws, and indeed had provided a small business in the area.
She was a big Reagan supporter and pro-life activist too.
Should have married her. Too soon old, too late smart.
The white guilt has worn off. We elected the brotha so stop bothering us about being racist...
Even liberals will wonder why this putz is still in office, eventually...........
2012 will not be about the GOP candidate. Unless a miracle occurs and Obama rehabilitates his image through brilliant leadership, Palin or Bachman, DeMint or even Romney (ObamaCare be upon him) could beat the communist in 2012. People will vote for Obama or against him; the specific identity of the challenger will be only a minor factor for the vast majority of voters.
This group will stay with him and the Democrat Party throughout eternity.
The College and university students of 2008 are now graduated or are about to graduate. They see that there are no jobs and may spend the summer and fall working at a burger joint with a college degree barely dry. The College and university students of 2012 will have had 4 years to see for themselves what a disaster their predecessor shave wrought....................
They see it and they are a part of it, but, the Democrats and media persionnel either blame it on Bush and the Republicans outright or insinuate that it is Bush’s han the Republican’s fault. And they believe the Democrats and media instead of their lying eyes. At least it has been that way with the ones I talked with.
I try not to talk to liberals. It only makes you frustrated and they can’t grasp logic and reason. It’s like trying to convince a two-year old that candy is bad and by taking it away you have done them a favor. They are like children who have never grown up....................