Everybody is saying that the immigration bill passed with such fanfare by the Senate will die a long, slow death in the House. This is not a surprise, in spite of the fact that many pundits said Republicans needed to get behind immigration reform to patch up relationships with Latino voters.
But, apparently, Republicans have decided they don’t need Latino voters, because they believe there is a great untapped reservoir of white people who didn’t vote in the last election. Some guy named Sean Trende published an analysis that seems to show there should have been more white people voting in 2012, meaning there were missing white voters. Ruy Teixeira explains,
What he means by this is that, given the estimated number of white voters in 2008 (derived from exit polls) and the natural increase in white eligible voters between 2008 and 2012 there should have been far more white voters than there actually were (again, estimated from the exit polls). He labels the difference between his projected and actual numbers of white voters as “missing” white voters. He goes on to say that “[i]f these white voters had decided to vote, the racial breakdown of the electorate would have been 73.6 percent white, 12.5 percent black, 9.5 percent Hispanic and 2.4 percent Asian — almost identical to the 2008 numbers.” Get it? The only real demographic change of importance between 2008 and 2012 was all those white voters who didn’t show up.
The two basic flaws in this analysis, Teixeira says, is (1) his “natural increase” of white voters between 2008 and 2012 assumes 1.2 million more white voters than census data say actually exist, and (2) the same logic he uses to find missing white voters reveals a lot of missing nonwhite voters also, which Trende just plain ignores. This strikes me as similar to the wishful thinking that persuaded so many of them Romney was winning the general election, even though polls said otherwise.
Paul Krugman calls this analysis “A Whiter Shade of Fail.”
All the signs of doom are here. Boehner is falling deeper into the tea party rabbit hole every day; the establishment has decided to cut its losses; the intellectual superstructure of opposition is gaining ground; and the hot-air crowd is finding ever more deranged conspiracy theories to rally the troops.
So they’re going to remain the White Men’s Southern/Midwestern Christian Anti-Labor Party. See also Jonathan Chait, “Conservatives Hate All Legislation Now,” and the NY Times, “The Decline of North Carolina.”