THE NEW PARTY OF THE RICH

First Things | 4/28/2017 | Darel E. Paul
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In November 2018 the Democratic party reclaimed control of the House of Representatives, thanks to strong gains among the rich. The party won 43 seats from Republicans, 18 of which were among the richest 15 percent of congressional districts nationwide. In twelve different states, the richest House district flipped from Republican to Democrat. In five states, the top two richest flipped. The richest 15 percent of House districts are now represented by 56 Democrats and just 10 Republicans. In 2018, voters in America’s wealthiest counties, cities, and neighborhoods made a decisive turn toward the Democrats, and now America’s traditional party of the left—whether it admits it or not—is the party of the rich.

The November 2019 elections have only accelerated this trend. Democrats claimed majorities in both houses of the Virginia state legislature for the first time since the first Clinton administration. Kentuckians elected a Democratic governor despite supporting Donald Trump by 30 percentage points three years ago. Local elections in the Philadelphia suburbs turned out a big blue wave. And in each case, Democratic victories were built on the support of the richest electoral districts.

Virginia - Democrats - Houses - State - Legislature

In Virginia, Democrats captured both houses of the state legislature for the first time since 1995 and will hold the coveted trifecta—control of the state senate, state house, and governor’s office—for the first time since 1993. Before the 2017 election Democrats held only 34 of the 100 seats in the Virginia House of Delegates. After the 2019 election they will hold 55, and it was the richest districts in the state that made a blue Virginia possible. Of the 21 seats that changed hands between 2015 and 2019, 16 were in the richest half of districts state-wide and 13 were in the richest third. In 2015 Virginia’s 27 highest income districts elected 15 Democrats and 12...
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