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The GOP’s Racial Challenge

John BoehnerZoltan Hajnal
11/10/2010

Lost in the GOP’s euphoria over its midterm victory is the fact that it has almost become a whites-only party. Its strategy may win seats now, but it will lose over the long run, writes Hajnal. Republicans can’t win in the future without more nonwhite votes. If minorities didn’t give up on the Democratic Party last week, they are unlikely to do so without dramatic changes in the platforms of the two parties. A growing and resolutely Democratic nonwhite population is a serious threat to the Republican electoral calculus. Over the long term–as white voters become an ever-smaller fraction of the electorate and Latinos and other racial and ethnic minorities become a larger share–any campaign that appeals primarily to whites will be doomed.

Hajnal, an associate professor of political science at UC San Diego, is author of “America’s Uneven Democracy” (Cambridge University Press, 2009).

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