How a demographic change helped Joe Biden to the White House

By Declan Carey


A DEMOGRAPHIC shift explains why traditional Republican states are turning blue according to a leading academic.

Professor Todd Landman of Nottingham University told Redaction Politics that minority groups and migration trends are changing the United States political landscape.

He said: “In the run up to the 2016 election if you looked at the demographics in the United States at the time, we see that America is becoming browner.

“There was a lot of chat in the debates, the discourse around blacks and brown people was really coming to the fore.

“The white population is getting smaller and regardless of Trump’s claims about historic black colleges and doing well in employment figures for African-Americans, his discourse and his use of language is nostalgic and reminiscent of an America that is no longer there in terms of the demographics.

“In my less charitable moments, I would say this is the last anxious gasp of a vanishing majority.

“There is an anxiousness in the white community about the changes.”

Joe Biden’s victory over Donald Trump depended on winning states which had previously voted Republican in order to gain the 270 Electoral College votes to win.

Arizona was one of those, voting Democrat this year for the first time since 1996.

A US Census report from 2019 showed large numbers of Americans are moving to different states, with Arizona a prime destination for Californians.

Professor Landman said: “300,000 Californian’s moved there [Arizona] mostly because of the cost of living.

“They bring with them a different ideological position and it looks like Biden flipped Arizona for the first time since 1996.

“Identity plays into those demographics both in terms of the youth vote but also the mix of identities around minorities and protected characteristics, from gender to LGBTQ, changes the electoral landscape.”

Kamala Harris made history by becoming the first female and woman of colour to be elected Vice President.

While voters in New York elected the first black men who are openly gay to Congress in Ritchie Torres and Mondaire Jones.

On diversity, Professor Landman explained that the Trump administration increased tensions between the general population and marginalised groups.

He said: “Trump had a history, going after the central park five for example, his father was indicted on racial discrimination on housing projects in New York City.

“There was a race baiting element to all of this and race dog whistles and his inability to condemn the violence in Charlottesville.

“If we roll forward to this election, we do see trans candidates being successful, we see trans military people being successful.

“Biden has selected someone to run with his transition team who is a trans military officer.

“Trump went after trans people in the military, he has gone after the LGTBQ community more generally around employment and around inclusion.

“Despite the small size of that community, it does send a very strong signal that is exclusionary and creates a discourse around what real Americans are versus others.”


Featured Image: Gage Skidmore @Flickr

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