The overwhelming defeat of candidates and policies associated with President Barack Obama notwithstanding, 21st-century U.S. politics will be influenced by the growing population of non-European America, writes demographer William Frey in Politico
The senior-age and majority white population will continue to be a force for the next several election cycles, boosting Republican chances.
Over the longer haul, though, "demography seems inevitably tilted in favor of racial minorities, whose ranks are swelling throughout the country and who have the potential to disrupt the nation's current political fault lines," Frey writes.
As the population shifts so will cultural and political values. Hispanics, Asians and multiracial Americans will have the kind of influence in this century that baby boomers had in the latter half of the 20th century.
"The ascendancy of racial minorities will be the signature demographic trend of the 21st. And the coming explosion will have radical implications for American politics," Frey writes.
More minority than white babies are being born in the United States. The current dominant minorities are blacks and Hispanics.
"Minority white" child populations already exist in 10 states, and in about 13 years, a majority of those under 30 will be non-Caucasian millennials. This cohort favors bigger government and more services, Frey says.
The opposite, he write, was true of the earlier generation of white baby boomers.
Shifting populations will also impact politics. More and more African-Americans are moving to the South. Hispanics will transfer from places like New York and Los Angeles to the interior of the country.
Hispanics are already the leading source of population growth in suburbia, according to Frey.
He writes, "Of course, translating this minority-driven demographic change into political change involves some lag time."
Democrats should have no assurance that Hispanics will align with them. Both parties will need to adapt.
Politicians ought to think now about how to keep the coming demographic "wave from relegating their party to the sidelines, no more than a relic of majority-white America," Frey concludes.
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