Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

11/8/2012 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Republican strategy failed to appeal to Catholics, other key demographics.

As Republicans autopsy the election, they are learning just where and how their campaign to elect Mitt Romney went wrong. So far, very few analysts seem to agree, but there are some eyebrow raising numbers.

No successful candidate can afford to ignore the Catholic vote.

No successful candidate can afford to ignore the Catholic vote.

Article Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

11/8/2012 (1 year ago)

Published in Politics & Policy

Keywords: Catholics, catholic vote, Republicans, Democrats, election, 2012, Mitt Romney, strategy


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Obama picked up three large blocks of the American population. He won support from more than 90 percent of the black population and about 70 percent of the Hispanic population. Finally, he won the all-important women's vote. 

Obama also did well with youth voters, garnering a majority from those under 44. All other major demographics voted with Romney. The religious sided with the challenger, giving him 60 percent of their vote. 

Interestingly, the Catholic vote went to Obama. Despite a virtual declaration of war between the Obama administration and the Catholic Church, Obama still won the 10 largest Catholic states in the union. 

The reason why Obama did so well with these populations is because he targeted them and their concerns quite deliberately. More importantly, many minority voters have trouble identifying with the Republican Party, which they see as conservative and overwhelmingly white. 

The minority population is also growing more rapidly than the white population, per captia. That means minority voters now make up a larger share of the electorate than ever before. In 1996, only 10 percent of voters were non-whites. In 2012, that number has more than doubled to 21 percent. 

In fact, minority voters may not be minorities for much longer. In states such as California, whites are now less than 50 percent of the population. 

These demographics reveal that Romney's weak appeal to minorities was a costly factor. His late appeal to women did gain him some ground, but not enough to win him the election. 

Interestingly, the Catholic swing vote, which was predicted months in advance, went to Obama, despite pleas and warnings from Church officials to parishioners that a vote for Obama would be a vote against themselves. 

So why would so many people willingly vote against their self-interest?

The answer lies in Romney's campaign, and in particular, what it failed to do. Romney's campaign focused on white, middle and upper class citizens, particularly males. This bore fruit for him. Most of this demographic supported his bid. 

However, Romney seemed to alienate key parts of the electorate. In previous campaigns, these elements could be sacrificed to appeal to the base, but no more. The fact is, blacks, Hispanics, women, and Catholics have arrived. They now wield significant political power. Subordinating their issues to traditional, main-stream issues, such as those frequently espoused by the tea party, for example, is a losing recipe. 

The message to Republicans, who spent a billion dollars appealing to their core demographic, is a troubling one. The Republican shift to the right is a bankrupt position. It may still serve politicos in primaries and local, or even state elections, but at a national level, the (now-infamous) pivot to the middle made famous by a Romney manager, is much more important. It needs to happen even before the race begins. It needs to start NOW.

Appeals made during the primary matter. Romney's comment about the "47 percent" resonated with many in the black and Hispanic communities, whose populations tend to be poorer than those in the white demographic. Many blacks and Hispanics say they felt Romney was speaking about them or their neighbors when he made that comment, although Romney never elaborated on this. 

In the future, Republicans cannot afford to ignore these populations in national races. Of course, to be fair, these populations weren't entirely ignored, but they weren't courted either. More importantly, the Republican Party entirely must do more to fold these people into their base long before election cycles begin. 

And the Catholic vote, the one key that has proven decisive in several previous elections, simply cannot be ignored. This demographic, possibly above all others, should be targeted with great enthusiasm. Catholics make natural Republicans as far as the party clearly supports the three non-negotiable issues set forth by Pope Benedict XVI, which are life, marriage and family, and authentic human freedom. 

However, to get the Catholic vote, and the votes of those in the other demographics, the party will have to pivot more to the center on some issues. For example, Republican support of the death penalty and an emphasis on draconian cuts to social services will have to be moderated. 

If the Republican Party can moderate its message and appeal to these demographics, then it stands a good chance of emerging victorious the next time around. However, if the party leadership remains stubbornly attached to the tea party base and fails to broaden its appeals, then its leadership can look forward to more money wasted and more head scratching as the Democrats seize greater chunks of power. 


---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


© 2014 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for April 2014
Ecology and Justice:
That governments may foster the protection of creation and the just distribution of natural resources.
Hope for the Sick: That the Risen Lord may fill with hope the hearts of those who are being tested by pain and sickness.



Comments


More Politics & Policy

Supreme Court rules affirmative action in Michigan's college admissions is unconstitutional Watch

Image of The ruling focused on a voter-passed proposal that banned the use of race in admissions decisions at public universities.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Hailed as a milestone in a decades-long discourse, the Supreme Court has upheld a ban on the use of race in admission decisions at Michigan's public universities. Marked by protests in the streets of Ann Arbor and previous Supreme Court rulings, it was noted ... continue reading


Is affrimative action dead? SCOTUS rules on who can decide the issue Watch

Image of A ruling by the Supreme Court allows states to decide on whether they use a race-conscious policy in admitting students to advanced public education.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The Supreme Court struck a blow against those seeking to trample on the rights of states, upholding a Michigan voter initiative which banned racial preferences when considering admission into one of the states' public universities, on April 22. LOS ANGELES, CA ... continue reading


Exxon Mobil must pay the piper: High court rejects appeal on $105 million verdict Watch

Image of MTBE is an oxygen-containing substance that is added to gasoline to promote more complete combustion and reduce air pollution.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

They were found guilty way back in 2009 and now must pay for their transgressions. The U.S. Supreme Court has declined to overturn a $105 million verdict against Exxon Mobil for contaminating drinking wells in the New York City borough of Queens. LOS ANGELES, CA ... continue reading


He just keeps coming and coming! Highest - and longest period of taxation proposed by President Obama Watch

Image of Under Obama's budget proposal, according to the CBO, the budget will never balance.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

President Barack Obama called for what would be the highest level of sustained taxation ever imposed on the American people. According to the analysis published last week by the Congressional Budget Office, the plan was included in the budget proposal Obama ... continue reading


A new Civil War? Lawmakers meet to discuss taking back federal lands for the states Watch

Image of Lawmakers met in Salt Lake City to discuss how the federal government has been using lands in the Western states.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Lawmakers from the Western states gathered in Salt lake City last Friday to discuss what happened on the Bundy ranch in Nevada and to say that it is time for the states, not the federal government, to manage those resources for the good of their people. LOS ANGELES, CA ... continue reading


INCOME TAXES? 'If it reaches a certain point, perhaps you should revolt,' Justice Scalia tells students Watch

Image of Justice Scalia told the students that the justices do not give credence to partisan politics, and that he doesn't care which party controls the White House. He stands by a theory of

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

It came as a most bit of unorthodox advice, from a lawmaker to an audience of impressionable minds. While speaking at the University Of Tennessee College Of Law last week, Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia was asked by a student about his interpretation of ... continue reading


DECLARED INVALID: North Dakota abortion ban overturned by federal judge Watch

Image of North Dakota has passed new abortion restrictions in recent years. Abortion supporters have declared North Dakota's fetal heartbeat law as the most restrictive in the country.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A North Dakota law banning abortions when a fetal heartbeat can be detected, as early as six weeks into pregnancy, has been overturned by a federal judge. The law is "invalid and unconstitutional," according to U.S. District Judge Daniel Hovland, who declared ... continue reading


Evidence of corruption: Newly disclosed emails show Lois Lerner WAS in contact with the DOJ over conservative political groups Watch

Image of The truth is, only I am allowed to lie and dodge questions, not private citizens or their political groups.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The Lois Lerner - Eric Holder scandal has hit the fan with the court ordered release of documents which implicate both in breaking the law to persecute and potentially prosecute conservative non-profit organizations. This issue has been the subject of Congressional ... continue reading


Cliven Bundy is a scofflaw, so why are so many people supporting him? Watch

Image of We want these things respected. Our Faith, our Rights, our Liberty. That's why we stand against federal corruption and evil. This is not negotiable.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Despite the drama which recently unfolded on the Bundy ranch in Nevada, the federal government apparently has a history of using heavy-handed tactics to enforce their will on rural farmers. This is part of the reason why so many people are sympathetic to Bundy, despite ... continue reading


WSJ exposes secret tax Obama has imposed on EVERY HOUSEHOLD in America - and yes, you have to pay! Watch

Image of Government regulation is a stealth tax on the economy costing $1.9 trillion annually.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The Wall Street Journal has exposed one of the greatest problems of the Obama administration and how its behavior is hurting the economy. While most would be quick to cry corruption, the reality is far more mundane and at least as dangerous. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic ... continue reading


All Politics & Policy News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Acts 3:1-10
1 Once, when Peter and John were going up to the ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 105:1-2, 3-4, 6-7, 8-9
1 Alleluia! Give thanks to Yahweh, call on his name, ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 24:13-35
13 Now that very same day, two of them were on their ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for April 23rd, 2014 Image

St. George
April 23: Pictures of St. George usually show him killing a dragon to ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter