A New Republican Party?
The Republican Party is at a century-high level of state, congressional and electoral strength. However, this is not purely because of large white working class people turnout in the last election, as some would claim. That highly repeated narrative is lacking in that it utterly ignores the shift that took place among every other demographic; they were by no means the only group involved in that victory.
Without the double digit support from especially the Hispanic and even the LGBTQ communities Trump would not have become president. These groups voted more often as Republicans this time than in past elections, according to exit poll data, which showcases a possibly changing demographic for that party.
The votes were close in many states. If just a few percent less from the aforementioned groups had not supported Trump, he would not have become president. An example of this is half of Cubans voted Trump in Florida.
Trump divided and conquered the Republican party’s Evangelical wing and it may again be becoming far more diverse like its historical roots.
Why are more Hispanics slowly shifting Republican? The answer is simple – small business. They are very much leading the charge in that area of economic growth.
A poll done by the NSBA showed around 78% of small business owners leaning conservative. Further polls by the organization found support for the Democrat Party among that group has dropped in recent years.
These last elections were therefore no shock when you look into those details.
Two Explanations Of How They Gained Control
The affirmative argument to this would be that the Republicans got more democratic votes and therefore hold more seats.
To an extent this is true; however there is more. A more negative argument would be that since we are a Republican system, so to say a Republic and not a pure democracy. The process of state parties skillfully gerrymandering districts could account for disparity between the numbers.
When it came to the electoral college, they had the votes where it counted across a wider regional constituency, since the electoral college simply represents each state’s power in congress in accordance to the Constitution’s originalist prerogative.
Another factor could be the immigration out of urban cities into suburbia or rural areas. Rural America very much made a showing this last election, which brings up the notion that perhaps the age old conflict of cultures between cities and country has reared its ugly head again.
For at least the next two years until the next election, America will be as close to a one party state as its ever been.
The Rise Of The Third Party
It is not unheard of for Independent candidates to sometimes rise to popularity such as the case of Ross Perot in the 90s. Bernie Sanders was also an Independent, though in his case one who caucused Democrat. However, not since the Bull Moose Party of the early 20th century has there been such a surge in membership of third parties.
In recent elections, the two main third parties were the Libertarian Party and the Green Party. They were each respectively represented by former Governor Gary Johnson and Dr. Jill Stein. Neither, however, hit the popular percent threshold to participate in the national debates. At one point, Johnson polled as high as ten percent. Though it did not hold after a series of blunders and a highly polarized race. The Green Party gained some ground but fell short of their large showing in the 2000 election.
If current patterns continue then American Politics will continue to evolve in decades to come. Perhaps in ways that we cannot now even imagine.