Republicans are “becoming the party of blue-collar Americans” so long as the party continues with a populist-nationalist agenda, new analysis reveals.
Overall, an NBC News survey finds, Republicans have gained 12 percentage points with working class Americans between 2010 and 2020 while losing one percentage point with Americans who hold white-collar jobs.
At the same time, Democrats have lost eight percentage points with blue-collar Americans and gained just one percent with white-collar Americans. For Republicans, since 2020, the total of white Americans in blue-collar jobs who now vote for the GOP jumped from 45 percent in 2010 to 57 percent in 2020.
The increase of support for Republicans with working class Americans has cut across racial lines. For example, whereas just 23 percent of blue-collar Hispanic Americans supported Republicans in 2010, today about 36 percent support Republicans. Working class black Americans, likewise, support Republicans at a rate of about 12 percent — a seven percentage point boost since 2010.
“For good reason,” Rep. Jim Banks (R-IN) wrote online. “Republicans are the party of the working class!”
The demographic’s growing support for Republicans has occurred as President Trump introduced the “America First” agenda in 2015 which sought to boost wages, job opportunities, and quality of life specifically for working class Americans who are often shut out by the economic gains of the nation’s wealthiest and donor classes.
Trump’s economic nationalist platform — which included reducing overall immigration to tighten the labor market, imposing tariffs on foreign imports, pressuring corporations to bring manufacturing back to the United States, and opposing foreign wars — continues to be widely popular with the party’s base and swing voters.
Many of those populist-nationalist ideals have since been adopted by House Republicans, Senate Republicans, and GOP governors. Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL), for instance, has sought to expand the child tax credit to aid working and middle class families. Sens. Tom Cotton (R-AR) and Mitt Romney (R-UT), similarly, have introduced a plan to raise the federal minimum wage while requiring companies to use E-Verify to ban illegal hiring.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R), who has made banning sanctuary cities, environmental restoration, and a crackdown on rioting key components of his agenda, is currently pursuing regulatory crackdowns on tech conglomerates to protect state residents from Silicon Valley’s increasing economic corporate dominance.
The initiatives seek to capture broad support from an electorate that is increasingly populist on economics and culturally conservative.
The GOP’s leaning into libertarian policy initiatives, the research found, remains its largest weakness because so few in the electorate consider themselves economically conservative and socially liberal.
Those that do fall into the libertarian quadrant actually favored Biden much more than Trump, whereas economic liberals who are socially conservative favored Trump over Biden.
While the electorate is effectively split between cultural liberals and cultural conservatives, the majority — 63 percent — are economically liberal, whereas just 37 percent consider themselves economically conservative. In fact, on economics, a significant portion of Trump voters in 2020 described themselves as liberal with major support for Social Security and Medicaid.
A survey from May 2020 found that up to 94 percent of Americans support economic nationalist policies such as more tariffs on foreign imports, mandatory country-of-origin labeling, and requirements that goods be made in the U.S.
John Binder is a reporter for Breitbart News. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter here.