Kemberlee Kaye reports:
Though Trump has successfully syphoned off some traditional Republican supporters, the majority of his support base is comprised of a very particular kind of Democrat.
Here’s more from that Nate Cohn story in the NYT:
He is strongest among Republicans who are less affluent, less educated and less likely to turn out to vote. His very best voters are self-identified Republicans who nonetheless are registered as Democrats. It’s a coalition that’s concentrated in the South, Appalachia and the industrial North, according to data provided to The Upshot by Civis Analytics, a Democratic data firm.
Mr. Trump’s huge advantage among these groups poses a challenge for his campaign, because it may not have the turnout operation necessary to mobilize irregular voters.
This isn’t exactly rocket surgery, but the trick ought to be to woo Trump’s voters instead of attacking Trump. His Messiah Factor seems to be high with these Perot-type voters, and while they might not bother to turn out for him in a small primary or caucus vote, they might well turn out in November for a Trump-endorsed GOP nominee.
And guess who is already doing that? Bernie Sanders:
Sanders and his aides are making a direct attempt to woo at least some would-be Trump fans away from the dark side of populism, especially in New Hampshire, which has an open primary system that allows even a small number of independent voters to make a big impact.
“Bernie’s ability to appeal to a broad swath of voters, and not solely triple-prime Democrats, can make a crucial difference in the Live Free or Die state, where unaffiliated and independent voters play an enormous role,” said Sanders’ New Hampshire communications director Karthik Ganapathy. “Bernie’s message speaks to people who feel that frustration, but instead of channeling it towards hatred and xenophobia, offers voters a forward-looking and hopeful vision for the future.”
As Stacy McCain likes to remind people, “You cannot build a successful political movement by a process of subtraction.”
Sanders knows this. Democrats as a rule understand this in their bones.
The modern GOP, not so much.