With Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp having recently signed into law a voter suppression bill that civil rights activists are vehemently protesting against, Republicans in state legislatures all over the country are pushing equally repressive bills. Conservative Washington Post opinion writer Jennifer Rubin, this week in her column, emphasizes that Republicans are deathly afraid of evolving demographics. And she points to recent data from the Democratic firm TargetSmart and Gallup as evidence of why the GOP is so worried and is resorting to blatant voter suppression.
TargetSmart, Rubin notes, has "compiled information on more than 98% of those who cast ballots last year." The firm reports that "non-college educated Whites dropped from 53.8% of the electorate in 2016 to 49.2% in 2020" and that "nationally, total turnout increased by 12% relative to 2016, turnout among (Asian-American and Pacific Islander) voters surged by 43%, and Latino turnout increased by almost a third of all votes cast."
Rubin notes that although former President Donald Trump performed better among Latinos in 2020 than he did in 2016, he "still lost 65% of these voters."
Non-college educated Whites have been a key part of Trump's MAGA base. And Rubin explains, "Republicans' 'solution' is to keep these voters at a fever pitch, sell them on fear and resentment, and to try to maximize their share of the electorate by making it harder for everyone else to vote — especially non-Whites and low-income Americans."
Rubin goes on to note that another "statistic" that is encouraging "the Republicans' collective panic attack" is the shrinking number of White evangelical voters. Trump is quite popular among far-right White evangelicals, and Rubin points to a recent Gallup survey showing that the number of U.S. residents who regularly attend a church, synagogue or other type of religious institution has fallen below 50%. Gallup has been conducting polls on religious participation in the U.S. since the late 1930s, and this was the first time in over 80 years that the number fell that low.
Rubin explains, "Churches are losing younger Americans at a remarkable rate…. If Republicans cannot find enough non-college-educated Whites and, worse for them, cannot count on White evangelicals — more than 80% of whom voted for the MAGA Party — to keep pace with the growth of nonreligious voters, their nativist party…. will no longer be viable at the national level."
The conservative columnist wraps up her April 21 column by stressing that while the U.S will continue to have "deep red states," there is no denying that the GOP's base is growing smaller and smaller.
"Republicans, in essence, are trying to eke out as many election cycles as they can with its shrinking base," Rubin observes. "Deathly afraid of alienating the most rabid MAGA supporters, they continue to stoke racial resentment, fear of immigrants and bizarro conspiracy theories — all of which push away non-Whites, women, college-educated voters and younger voters. In sum, Republicans' base is vanishing, and they haven't the slightest idea what to do about it — other than a possibly self-destructive effort to disenfranchise voters."