Moms, a target of the right, lean heavily left

Moms, a target of the right, lean heavily left

Philip Bump writes:

To hear prominent Republicans tell it, theirs is the party of parents. This is somewhere downstream from Donald Trump’s eagerness to turn the corner on the coronavirus pandemic in 2020, which intertwined with parents’ frustration about their kids not being in school. After President Biden was inaugurated, the party and its media allies elevated and stoked parental discontent about how race was taught and gender addressed in schools. Stephen K. Bannon advocated that conservatives run for local school boards; Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) endorsed several such candidates who won.

As he’s tried to find his footing in his bid for the 2024 Republican presidential nomination, DeSantis has attempted to leverage these appeals to parenthood. He’s been an advocate for Moms for Liberty, a right-wing organization that’s been identified as an extremist group by the Southern Poverty Law Center. His wife, Casey, has been at the forefront of a subset of supporters of his campaign, dubbed “Mamas for DeSantis.”

Given all of that, you would be forgiven for assuming that parents — and mothers in particular — are a central component of Republican or conservative politics. And perhaps the goal is that someday they might be. But right now? Mothers are much more blue than red.

When Elon Musk randomly disparaged those without children earlier this month, I looked at the politics and ideology of those who have kids in the United States. Using data from the 2021 iteration of the national General Social Survey (GSS), I found that those without children were 32 points more likely to identify as Democrats than Republicans, most of them identifying as liberal Democrats.

Among those with kids under 18, the gap was narrower but still existent: They were 22 points more likely to be Democrats than Republicans (and more likely to be moderate). It was only parents with at least one child over 17 where party identification was about equal. They were more likely to be conservative Republicans than liberal Democrats by nine percentage points. [Continue reading…]

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