JUST IN: New Polls Conclude Trump Will Be The First Republican In 60 Years To Lose This Demographic


Trump has hit a new low. He is the first Republican projected to lose the white college graduate vote in 60 years. Nate Silver of FiveThirtyEight [538] makes his remarkably accurate predictions by analyzing various voter blocks in upcoming elections. This particular segment of the voting population is so important, that it could swing the entire vote against Trump in the November election.

Silver’s analysis does show Trump maintaining a stronger lead among white voters without a college degree by a wider margin than former presidential candidate Mitt Romney had over President Barack Obama in the 2012 election. Not only is Trump doing worse than Romney among voters with a college degree, if he continues on this pathway, he will lose the entire category.

CBS/NYT May 13 -6 -4
NBC/WSJ May 15 -3 0
ABC/Post May 16 +2 +1
CBS News June 9 -6 -21
CNN June 16 -5 -8
NBC/WSJ June 19 -5 -1
ABC/Post June 20 -12 -8
Average -5 -6
Trump’s struggles among white college graduates in recent polls

Silver’s website 538 [FiveThirtyEight] gathers and averages pre-election polls. He has taken into consideration seven live interview polls since Trump became the presumed Republican presidential candidate, to predict the real estate mogul’s dire outcome. Since then, the GOP candidate has been behind Democrats among whites with a college degree by an average of 6 percentage points.

Those same polls show Trump losing the overall election by an average of just 5 percentage points which is also unusual.

White College Graduates Voting Republican
White College Graduates Voting Republican. Image: FiveThirtyEight site.

Trump’s appeal to the white population without college degrees and lack of appeal to the white population with college degrees seems reasonable, given the content of his speeches.

It is quite a different situation historically. The Republicans have carried the white college degreed population in every primary election from 1956 to 2012, according to the American National Elections Studies.

Clinton is doing better among white college degreed voters than expected, yet she isn’t blowing Trump out of the water in the overall electorate. President Lyndon B. Johnson was unable to carry whites with a college degree in 1964, even as he beat Barry Goldwater by 23 percentage points overall.

That means there is a big shift among white degreed voters toward Clinton, but the rest of the population is not following. Clinton does approximately 17 percentage points better among white with a college degree and that correlates to the 2012 exit polls. Neither she nor Trump has a 9 point lead among any in the other 16 demographic groups.

The battle lines between the two parties have shifted. Democrats have taken the white college degreed vote away from the Republicans by a dramatic margin for the first time in 60 years. That means the 2016 election will have a class-based divide among white voters for the first time in four decades. With that demographic, the former Secretary of State could take swing states such as Virginia, North Carolina, and Colorado.

Conversely, Clinton could do worse than President Obama in states where many whites lack a college degree, such as Iowa and Ohio.

This election is most definitely a change election.

Featured Image: Michael Vadon via Flickr, Creative Commons License, modification.
H/T: FiveThirtyEight.