Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Young Voters in Iowa Favored Bernie Sanders Six-to-One Over Hillary Clinton

Well, America's youth are dumb, but they're not that dumb: they can sure ferret out the true hardline communist in the Democrat field.

From Ronald Brownstein, at the Atlantic, "The Great Democratic Age Gap":

Bernie Sanders Communist photo 17ps-sanders-web1_zpskty0gwao.jpg
Bernie Sanders answered two important questions with his strong showing in Iowa. But, despite his impressive finish, he’ll need to answer two more to truly threaten Hillary Clinton for the Democratic presidential nomination.

The most powerful lesson from the Iowa caucus results is that Democrats are facing not just a generation gap, but a Grand Canyon-sized chasm. As I wrote this week, age has emerged as the single most important dividing line in the struggle between Sanders and Clinton.

In the Iowa entrance poll (which questions voters on the way into a caucus, rather than on their way out the door, like “exit polls” in primaries) Sanders amassed astounding margins among young people. He crushed Clinton by an almost unimaginable six to one—84 percent to 14 percent—among voters younger than 30. For those tempted to dismiss that as just a campus craze, he also routed her by 58 percent to 37 percent among those aged 30 to 44.

But Clinton’s margins were almost as impressive among older voters: she beat Sanders 58 percent to 35 percent among those aged 45-64, and by 69 percent to 26 percent among seniors.

That’s an even wider age gap than Iowa produced in the 2008 contest between Clinton and Barack Obama. In that Iowa caucus, Clinton also was routed among younger voters, but Obama stayed more competitive than Sanders did among those older than 45. On both sides, John Edwards, as a strong third contender, also somewhat muted the contrasts. In 2008, Clinton ran 34 percentage points better among seniors than with those under 30; this week, the gap was 55 points.

Obama beat Clinton by 20 percentage points among voters younger than 30, while she beat him by 25 points among voters older than 65, according to a cumulative analysis of the results of all the exit polls in the 2008 Democratic primary conducted by ABC pollster Gary Langer. Voters in the middle-aged groups divided more narrowly: Obama carried those aged 30-44 by 11 points, and Clinton carried the near retirement generation (45 to 64) by seven, according to Langer’s analysis.

But when it comes to piling up votes, one of these demographic advantages is much more useful than the other. Across all of the 2008 contests, according to Langer’s calculations, voters older than 45 cast fully 61 percent of Democratic votes, while those younger than 45 cast 39 percent. That’s an advantage for Clinton. And it’s a slightly worrisome note for Sanders—a cloud passing on an otherwise sunny day—that young voters cast a slightly smaller share of the total Iowa Democratic vote in 2016 than 2008.

Still, Sanders’s overwhelming margins among Iowa’s younger voters—which exceeded even Obama’s 2008 showing—affirmatively answered the first critical question for the Vermont senator’s campaign: Would the connection with young voters evident at his rallies translate to the ballot box?
An interesting hypothesis emerges: when young voters turn out, especially at record levels, far-left radicalism prevails in the outcomes.

As always, I expect Hillary to win the nomination, but it's an extremely much more interesting contest than it was looking to be in mid-2015, when most people --- once again --- expected Clinton to waltz to the nomination.

Thank goodness for Bernie for making it a race.

Still more (via Memeorandum).