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Tuesday Evening Owls: The nation’s elders are abandoning Donald Trump in droves

According to conventional wisdom, the reason for Trump’s declining support among seniors is his mishandling of the coronavirus pandemic. The president ignored the issue initially, while some of his Republican colleagues suggested that older Americans, who are more likely to die if they contract COVID-19, can be sacrificed in order to jump-start the economy. In July and August 2020, 11 nursing home residents died every hour nationally, according to a recent congressional report co-authored by Sen. Robert Casey (D-Pa). (…)

But Biden has actually held an advantage among seniors since last summer, indicating that the coronavirus isn’t the only factor. To understand why, it is helpful to remember that the group we refer to as “seniors” can actually be broken down into subsets, as Pew Research did back in 2012.

Those who turned 18 during the Nixon administration – a segment of older Baby Boomers – have tended to be slightly more Democratic than average in their voting. Those who came of age during the Eisenhower, Kennedy and Johnson years – mostly members of the Silent generation and the very oldest of the Baby Boomers –have tended to be more Republican than the average. 

As the number of seniors who came of age during the Eisenhower years fades, the slightly more Democratic Boomers are filling the ranks, adding 10,000 people to the 65+ age group per day. In other words, the senior cohort that voted for Trump in 2016 has changed dramatically. That alone could explain why Biden held a lead of about five points initially.

But Biden’s lead has continued to grow. (…)

TOP COMMENTS

QUOTATIONS

“The Constitution they wrote was designed to protect the rights of white, male citizens. As there were no black Founding Fathers, there were no founding mothers – a great pity, on both counts. It is not too late to complete the work they left undone. Today, here, we should start to do so.
         ~~Shirley Chisholm, Speaking in Congress for the Equal Rights Amendment, August 10, 1970

TWEET OF THE DAY

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When we were in college, Stephen Miller wrote a column that referred to Durham as a “petting zoo” and Black residents as the animals he shouldn’t be made to touch. Karmic to see him be the one requiring confinement and with whom contact should be avoided. https://t.co/9JFuoHQDID

— Meredith Shiner (@meredithshiner) October 6, 2020

BLAST FROM THE PAST

At Daily Kos on this date in 2018—Sen. Susan Collins, Liar: 

Sen. Susan Collins is lying.

Let’s just make that clear, because Susan Collins should not be under the impression that anyone, anywhere is buying onto her third man theory, the insulting, cowardly and toxic theory that Dr. Christine Blasey Ford was definitely assaulted when she was fifteen years old and that Sen. Susan Collins “believes” her, but Collins also believes that Dr. Ford is completely mistaken about the face she saw inches from hers, as a hand covered her mouth to keep her from screaming and a drunken friend turned up the radio so that other party-goers would not hear her attempts to escape. Susan Collins says she “believes” all parts of Dr. Ford’s testimony except for her absolute “100%” certainty that her assailant was a young Brett Kavanaugh. Instead, Collins “believes” Kavanaugh when he said, in evasive and rage-fueled testimony, that he didn’t do it–so it must have been someone else.

Collins is lying, and everybody knows it. What Susan Collins means is that she believes Brett Kavanaugh is currently too Important to have done it. Too central to the conservative cause; too much a celebrity. He has grown from a drunken lout of a boy to a man with powerful friends. He has appeared on television, and in the papers, and is the latest golden child of a movement devoted to unthreading the laws and restitching them into a hammock for the ruling class. Collins has no problem believing that Dr. Ford correctly described Brett Kavanaugh’s social circle–his drinking friends. She would have no hesitating in believing Dr. Ford if Dr. Ford had named any of those other names as her assaulter. But Brett Kavanaugh is simply too important to the moment to have done it–he denied it on the grandest of possible stages, after all–and therefore he did not.

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