Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

No Left Turns

Who are the Deaniacs?

Pew Research offers a profile of those who supported Howard Dean:


But Dean activists are far wealthier, better educated, more secular and much less ethnically diverse than other Democrats. A disproportionate number of Dean activists are white, well-educated Baby Boomers ­ fully a third are college graduates between the ages of 45 and 64, compared with just 9% of Democrats in the general public. But the image of younger Deaniacs as political newcomers has been borne out. For more than four-in-ten (42%) Dean activists ­ and two-thirds of those under age 30 ­ the Dean campaign represented their first foray into active presidential politics. And among those who were political veterans, a sizable number (36%) said they were more engaged this time than in previous campaigns.

And they "constitute an engaged group of citizens who intend to remain active in the Democratic Party and exert significant influence over its future direction."

Discussions - 6 Comments

They’re rebuilding the party on the backs of highly educated rich white liberals who came of political age in the 60s/70s?

I can see why they’d rather talk about the House Majority Leader, frankly.

Ah, you gotta love those limousine liberals.


Wealth and education equal influence. If conservatives don’t get a lot more wealth and a lot more education on their side, they’re in trouble. Change always depends on leadership, and leadership doesn’t come from the masses. A GOP that depends increasingly on downscale support may keep its head above water electorally, but it will have trouble making things happen.

I think it’s more important to recognize the "source" of the Limocrat’s education and affluence...the postindustrial economy. They increasingly rely on government, non-profit sector, and university jobs. On the other hand, the Right has the "righteously" wealthy -- people who produce something besides hot air.

We can use that to our advantage by 1) pointing it out, 2) pointing out that these people are dependent on the taxpayer, and 3) overseeing this sector of our economy MUCH better -- insisting on hiring oversight, downscaling government, and generally shrinking this surplus "black hole."

I suspect that if you researched it (I haven’t but perhaps someone has) you’d find that the Dean movement of 04 has a socioeconomic profile closely resembling that of the "Come Clean for Gene" McCarthy movement which swept the Democratic Party in 68, and in the shadow of which the Democratic Party has now lived and moved for decades.

Based on that analogy, I wouldn’t go into a panic just yet that the "white shoe" socioeconomic background and high education level of the Deaniacs is going to sweep them into electoral dominance, tho’ I take the point that conservatives should always seek ways to become honestly richer and authentically better educated, if only to help counter the rich and prestigiously schooled leftists that a postindustrial economy is sure to produce.


In response to PJC, I’m less worried about leftist "electoral dominance" than I am about the left’s power to set the terms of the public debate. Far too many Republicans let the other side tell them what they can say and do. Thus, the left wins even when it loses elections.

The power to set the terms of public debate is closely related to the left’s substantial advantages in income and money.

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