Sunday, October 19, 2014
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Calif. electorate gets even bluer

walters column sig

By
From page A8 | November 13, 2012 |

This wasn’t your father’s electorate, much less your grandfather’s.

Even as California’s white population declined sharply in the last generation to well below 50 percent, middle-age Anglo homeowners still dominated California’s elections. And this widening characteristic gap between voters and the overall population contributed to chronic political gridlock.

But Tuesday’s election saw the emergence of a much different demographic profile that, if it continues, permanently changes assumptions about our politics.

California’s new electorate, derived from exit polling data, is multiracial, younger, more liberal, not very religious and less likely to be married with children.

The Field Poll, California’s most venerable survey, had calculated in its last pre-election poll that Tuesday’s voters would be 70-plus percent white and mostly 50-plus years old – just about what it’s been in recent elections.

But an exit poll conducted for a consortium of news organizations found them to be just 54 percent white and just 36 percent 50 years or older.

A late-blooming surge of voter registrations that was largely young and Democratic hinted at the Election Day shift. It happened so late and so suddenly, thanks to a new Internet registration system, that Field and other pollsters could not adjust their survey samples.

Among its other effects, the registration surge dropped the Republican share to below 30 percent for the first time in the state’s history – a decline also reflected in the election, when just 28 percent of those casting ballots were self-described Republicans, about as many as saw themselves as independents.

The result was more-than-expected Democratic victories in key legislative and congressional races and in ballot measure contests, including passage of Gov. Jerry Brown’s tax measure.

Brown had campaigned extensively on college campuses, warning students of tuition increases and other impacts should the measure fail, and it fueled the registration drive.

Were this year’s new voters to continue their political participation, they would, it appears, dye California’s politics an even deeper and more permanent shade of blue.

But voter turnout in nonpresidential elections is usually much lower, and younger voters, especially nonwhites, have not had high participation levels in past years.

Thus, the intensity of what happened in California this year may fade in future elections, but there’s no doubt that the long reign of older white voters is coming to an end and that voters in future elections will more closely approximate the state’s diverse socioeconomic and demographic makeup.

Whatever that trend bodes for the state, it nevertheless is a fascinating and historic phenomenon.

Dan Walters is a columnist for the Sacramento Bee. Reach him at dwalters@sacbee.com.

LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | 13 comments

The Daily Republic does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

  • jafNovember 13, 2012 - 6:33 am

    The notion that anyone who is eligible to vote should vote is ridiculous and frightening to those of us who actually pay attention to the news. What does a typical college student who is caught up with his/her studies and partying understand about issues like Benghazzi or for that matter, the national debt? And, please don't tell me that I am being mean for pointing this out. The truth sometimes hurts, but it's still the truth. Typically, the college kids don't pay much in taxes and have generous hearts that bleed with empathy for those less fortunate than themselves. They can't really understand the bigger picture because they don't have much life experience to speak of. Consequently, any of the liberals' schemes to give away huge amounts of food stamps, allow illegals to stay in the country, etc., don't impact them economically yet, so they are all for voting/keeping these Dems. into/in office. Kids (and unfortunately too many older women) don't usually understand that there isn't really a "war on women" just because Republicans think of abortion as murder and want to limit its use as birth control, or that girls/women who are old enough to have sex should be old enough to pay for their own contraception (horrors!) Consequently, our beautiful state, under a solidly Democratic rule, is very soon to be Greece. Come to think of it, a nice riot on a warm evening complaining about how the state isn't able to continue its free stuff for the votes, might be just the thing to take your mind off of your studies!

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • CD BrooksNovember 13, 2012 - 6:42 am

    That is a pathetic condemnation of our youth. You far right thinking is precisely why your party has failed.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • CD BrooksNovember 13, 2012 - 7:08 am

    ...and furthermore jaf, if you paid attention to what was really going on around the country, you'd have a better understanding of your party politics and their inevitable loss. The majority spoke and both sides need to work together, that is what Americans want. The GOP must regroup and step up to this century's way of thinking or elections in 2014 will destroy them.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • Tom ChalkNovember 13, 2012 - 8:16 pm

    In 59 Philadelphia precincts: Obama--19,605 votes to Romney's 0! Voter Fraud, anyone? Only the GOP is guilty of that, right?

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • Joe PikeyNovember 13, 2012 - 8:27 pm

    I heard in Pittsburgh there was one vote for Romney, two if you count his dog (which they did)...

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • Danny BuntinNovember 13, 2012 - 9:25 pm

    ::::@Tom: It may look amazing, when told in a sarcastic manner from a right-wing publication, that brings you no context to the subject. After a quick google, I found a link that looked somewhat legitimate, because most of the links I found, turned out to be part of the echo chamber. Here is a neat little fact - "In a city with 1,687 of the ward subsets known as divisions, each with hundreds of voters, 59 is about 3.5 percent of the total." Does not sound so amazing now, does it Tom.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • rlw895November 13, 2012 - 9:25 pm

    Tom: That seems pretty unlikely. What's your source, and did you fact-check it?

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • Tom ChalkNovember 14, 2012 - 11:34 am

    RLW: By now you have probably discovered that I am not the only one astounded by the Philly votes.. Thank you for pointing out to Mr. Buntin my main point (about the unlikliness of such a result). His response seems to be irrelevant to what I was trying to say, while not refuting my numbers, per se.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • CD BrooksNovember 14, 2012 - 1:44 pm

    TC, I just did a quick GOOGLE search that led to another and apparently what happened in PA is not unprecedented. In 2008 at some Chicago and Atlanta precincts McCain got zero votes. The information also says these are all black areas being targeted and many feel that is an accurate representation. I don’t know but these stories usually turn out to have a reasonable explanation.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • Tom ChalkNovember 14, 2012 - 1:55 pm

    CD: Yes, I saw that as well. Probably not rocket science to figure out how it could be possible in those areas. But, c'mon man! Surely some inattentive soul must have mistakenly hit the wrong button somewhere along the way--just one? What happened to his/her vote? Hahahaha!

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • Danny BuntinNovember 13, 2012 - 10:39 am

    In a nut shell, "If you do not agree with me, you should not be allowed to vote". Benghazzi, give me a break.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • rlw895November 13, 2012 - 9:19 pm

    I see you have a complaint about our system of universal sufferage, jaf. But what do you propose? Only propertied white males who weren't distracted by education get to vote? Seriously, what would you do? Raise the voting age? Give a voter qualification test? Each idea will have its advantages and disadvantages. There is no perfect answer. Welcome to messy democracy.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • Danny BuntinNovember 13, 2012 - 9:35 pm

    @rlw895: jaf is not interested in playing by the rules of our Republic anymore. Those rules worked for years, but now the rules need to change because the outcomes are not to his liking. What, are we going to keep changing the rules until jaf gets the results he wants. Like a boy at school on break with his friend playing RockPaperScissors "Best of three, no best of five, wait - best of seven."

    Reply | Report abusive comment
.

Solano News

Snakes, superheroes liven up Halloween Howl

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A1 | Gallery

 
Solano looks at future of freight rail service

By Barry Eberling | From Page: A1, 1 Comment | Gallery

 
Are your heroes the good and honorable type?

By Perry W. Polk | From Page: C3

 
Alpha Color Blast brings messy fun to participants

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3 | Gallery

 
Italian Festival brings out the Italian in everyone

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3 | Gallery

Suisun council to examine zoning changes

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A4, 2 Comments

 
Cover cropping your home garden

By Kathy Low | From Page: C4, 1 Comment

Seven nutritional soundbites for kids

By Kate Land Md | From Page: C4

 
More than planes draws crowd to Nut Tree Airport

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A5 | Gallery

A cut above: Hair-raising time at Locks of Love event

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A6 | Gallery

 
Voter registration deadline is Monday

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A6

 
Pots and pans, patios and more at home and garden show

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A6 | Gallery

Weather for Oct. 19, 2014

By Daily Republic | From Page: B6

 
Architecture that inspires present for all to see

By Brian Miller and Karl Dumas | From Page: B7

Service members from county complete basic training

By Nick DeCicco | From Page: B10

 
‘Choice card’ doubts swirl as deadline nears

By Tom Philpott | From Page: B10

Suisun City Police log: Oct. 17, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A12

 
Fairfield police log: Oct. 17, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A12

.

US / World

First US Ebola victim remembered for compassion

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1, 3 Comments

 
Another year, another small Social Security bump

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7, 3 Comments

Family identify 4 kids, 2 adults killed in blaze

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

 
Cops: Remains may be those of missing UVa. student

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7, 2 Comments

Police: Another ambush suspect sighting reported

By The Associated Press | From Page: A9

 
Hawaii island hit by winds, rains from hurricane

By The Associated Press | From Page: A9

Iraq lawmakers approve interior, defense ministers

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

 
US, China vow to manage rifts ahead of Obama visit

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

Container ship adrift again off Canadian coast

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

 
9 more bodies push Nepal blizzard death toll to 38

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

.

Opinion

Market week ends on high note

By Bud Stevenson | From Page: B7

 
Why I’m voting for Proposition 1

By Richard L. Wood | From Page: A8, 21 Comments

Time to vote: Do so wisely

By Rod Keck | From Page: A8, 5 Comments

 
Sound off for Oct. 19, 2014

By Daily Republic | From Page: A8, 1 Comment

Adult education step to future

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A8

 
Dodd best choice for 4th District Assembly

By Daily Republic | From Page: A8

.

Living

Dogs welcome at St. Louis museum about, well, dogs

By The Associated Press | From Page: C1

 
Why I don’t breastfeed, if you must know

By The Washington Post | From Page: C2, 2 Comments

Today in History: Oct. 19, 2014

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

 
Community Calendar: Oct. 19, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A2

Goshen residents team up to save damaged church

By The Associated Press | From Page: C3

 
Vatican mystery: Where did gay welcome originate?

By The Associated Press | From Page: C3

Mental illnesses are real, treatment is available. Get help today.

By Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar | From Page: C4

 
Horoscopes: Oct. 19, 2014

By Holiday Mathis | From Page: C4

Seattle woman uses social media against groper

By The Seattle Times | From Page: C8

 
.

Entertainment

New Mencken book features unpublished material

By The Associated Press | From Page: C6 | Gallery

 
PUBLISHERS WEEKLY BEST-SELLERS

By The Associated Press | From Page: C6

 
John Green’s first book to be reissued in 2015

By The Associated Press | From Page: C6

TVGrid

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B11

 
.

Sports

So which Giants Series team is the best?

By Paul Farmer | From Page: B1

 
Bumgarner gets nod for Giants World Series opener

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

Goff’s late INT sends Cal to 36-34 loss to UCLA

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Vanden JV football team downs American Canyon

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B2

Canada helps Montana hold off UC Davis 42-28

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Ben Martin takes Las Vegas PGA lead

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

 
Bruce Bochy has the postseason touch with Giants

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3 | Gallery

Vickers wins pole in strange Talladega qualifying

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

 
Trade for Shields spurred Royals to turnaround

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

.

Business

On the money: Can you go solar? Leases, loans make it possible

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7

 
Flavors fuel food industry, but remain a mystery

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7, 1 Comment

Recalls this week: toy toasters, folding tables

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

 
Federal offshore oil lease sale set for March

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

Review: Stir Kinetic smart desk makes you stand up

By The Associated Press | From Page: B12

 
.

Obituaries

Lawrence Weber

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
Larry Lee Stanley

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

Chloe Chicko Kenty

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A4

 
Billy Raye Carter

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

Robert Alton Lauderdale

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A4

 
.

Comics