Who Showed Up at the Polls?

Wednesday, November 07, 2012

Voting Booth (Mortimer62/flickr)

In the last few days "turnout" became a favorite word among pundits. Who would show up to the polls this year? And how would that turnout affect the race? John Sides is a professor of political science at George Washington University and the co-author of "The Gamble: Choice and Chance in the 2012 Presidential election." Todd Zwillich is The Takeaway's Washington correspondent.

In the last few days "turnout" became a favorite word among pundits. Who would show up to the polls this year? And how would that turnout affect the race? 

John Sides is a professor of political science at George Washington University and the co-author of "The Gamble: Choice and Chance in the 2012 Presidential Election." Todd Zwillich is The Takeaway's Washington correspondent.

Sides says that the biggest problem for the Republican Party is that their base is largely a white, Christian base, and that's a shrinking demographic — not only because of increased diversity in America, but also because of the declining number of people who are affiliated with a religion.

"I don't think the Republican Party is facing an immediate demographic apocalypse or anything like that," Sides says. "But I think the lesson that the party seems to be learning right now — and I take this from the Wall Street Journal editorial page this morning — is that they've got to find ways to appeal to new demographics."

Though there is much to celebrate in the Democratic Party, the celebration may be short-lived. 

"Obama is facing some immediate issues, and they start today," Zwillich says, citing the looming fiscal cliff, the debt crisis, and expiring tax cuts. What does this mean for President Obama's second term? "It means he starts his second term in much the same way he started his first: a limited assertive agenda, because he has to attend to needs of circumstance."

Guests:

John Sides

Produced by:

Arwa Gunja

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