Friday, January 29, 2016

White voting by ethnic group

According to this video by Stefan Molyneux, white people tend to prefer smaller government. I would agree that whites might be unusual in wanting to protect the individual against the state, but Europeans and all those white Bernie Sanders voters are certainly comfortable with confiscating lots of your money.  Whites seem to be more live-and-let-live, but many of them want to soak the rich just like everyone does.

Whites are so diverse, let's get a little more precise and see which American white groups are majority Republican currently. Based on GSS data:

Percent voting for Romney in 2012

Dutch  76.2
English/Welsh  56.5
Scottish  54.5
French  52.2
German  52.0

Polish 42.4
Irish  42.2
Swedish 42.1
Italians  36.2
Jewish  32.4

Protestants and groups that have lived longer in the United States are more likely to vote Republican. Folks like me (English in my case) might feel a stronger connection to the country's traditions than more recent groups.

I suspect we would be more collectivist like Europe if we were a racially more homogenous country. If the recipients of government assistance look like they could be a cousin, we might be more in favor of it. But if we drum up an image of someone unconnected to ourselves when we think of welfare, we think, why help them? We sense that we are sharing with a competitor.


  1. Can you look at this on a state by state basis? Or at least divide between Red States and Blue States?

  2. If I'm not mistaken, you can only get state codes by special request. The GSS people are worried about the confidentiality of respondents, esp. in small states. Dumb. Region is the best we can do.

  3. Ethnicity as reported in the GSS is quite unreliable, and hence useless for these types of analyses.

    If you could get a hold of the data these guys use in the study I mention here, then that would be something.


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