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Josh Marshall: The GOP and the Albatross of White Racial Panic: Noted for July 31, 2013

Josh Marshall The GOP and the Albatross of White Racial Panic:

The biggest news… is… that the political impact of racial division has changed. For decades, the irresistible political catnip of the right was the political appeal… to racial division… good politics. But that’s not clear at all any more…. The declining role of racism… we’re not living in 1955 or even 1995 for that matter…. The rapid growth of the non-white voting population…. A declining percentage of the white population that believe whites are or need to be the dominant social group….

At the moment we’re moving toward one party that is genuinely multi-racial… another that is increasingly a white persons’ party…. There’s a small but substantial minority of the population that finds a new America where whites really aren’t the overwhelmingly dominant group… very frightening… between 20% and 25% of the population. And they are overwhelmingly in the Republican party….

And that’s what brings you to the what we might better call the Steve King problem, the guy… saying that virtually all DREAMers are drug mules and criminals…. King is speaking for the raw, undomesticated voice of that slice of the electorate for whom these social and population trends spell a basically non-stop state of white panic expressed through Obama conspiracy theories, fears of marauding Mexican hordes, hyper-opposition to primarily Latin American immigration and so much more…. He does speak for that relatively small slice of the electorate which makes up a pretty big slice of the GOP electorate and keeps the GOP anchored in opposition to immigration reform and to policies which put most of the non-white population off-limits…. The whole plan to ‘double down’ on the ‘whites only’ strategy now increasingly favored by Republicans isn’t so much of a strategy, as a recognition that it can’t break free or discipline that mammoth part of its voter base.