The most striking argument from the podium during the Republican convention’s first nights was Donald Trump Jr.’s claim that his father had more respect for blue-collar “street smarts” than white-collar book smarts earned at “fancy colleges.”
It was yet another instance of cultural signaling from the Trump campaign toward the working-class white voters who have anchored his support from the outset. But it also underscored the distance between the unconventional GOP nominee and the college-educated whites who have long been central to the party’s coalition.
Those white-collar whites are the group in which Trump’s performance most conspicuously lags behind other recent Republican nominees. They are also the group that appears most conflicted about the choice between Trump and Hillary Clinton.
Both candidates have reason for anxiety about these voters’ potentially pivotal role. For Trump it means converting a group much cooler to him than blue-collar whites even through the Republican primaries. And for Clinton it means holding a constituency that no Democratic presidential nominee has carried in the history of modern polling dating back to 1952. “How long can she continue to outrun President Obama by double digits among college whites?” frets one top Democratic strategist working on an independent pro-Clinton effort. “It does make you a little nervous.” Read more at The Atlantic.