There are clear demographic patterns in who does or doesn’t like Donald Trump, according to a recent analysis from Gallup.
Some factors are obvious: men, whites, and Protestant Christians are much more likely to support Trump than average.
“Race, ethnicity, and religious categories are hugely predictive of one’s view of Trump,” Gallup senior economist Jonathan Rothwell wrote in the report.
Some factors are surprising: people with high exposure to manufacturing job loss are slightly less likely to support Trump.
“When I started this analysis, I expected the relationship to be the opposite because Trump has focused so much on criticising trade competition with China and Mexico and other countries,” Rothwell said in a call. “[Trump supporters] might not like trade, but the reasons for them not liking trade are probably not that they were disproportionately affected themselves.”
Some factors are subtle: Trump support is higher in areas with fewer college graduates, less diversity, and worse white health.
“These findings suggest a need to better understand how even seemingly affluent voters may take extreme political views when their health status and the well-being of their children fail to meet their expectations,” Rothwell wrote. “The results also suggest that housing and social integration can moderate extreme political beliefs.”
You can see for yourself how different variables affect likelihood of supporting Trump. In the sample, taken from July 2015 through August 2016, 35% of respondents had a favourable view of Trump. The probability of any person supporting Trump went up or down when factoring in these variables:
Male: +14 percentage points
Installation and repair workers: +9
Transportation workers: +7
Veteran family: +6
Manufacturing worker: +5
Sales worker: +4
High school diploma (max): +3
Less diverse area: +3
Less educated area: +3
Business owner: +3
Area with worse white health: +2
Area with fewer non-profits: +1
Area with less manufacturing: +1
Area with lower voting rate: +1
Less urban area: +1
Farther from Mexico: +1
Whiter area: +1
Less white area: -1
Closer to Mexico: -1
More urban area: -1
Area with higher voting rate: -1
Area with more manufacturing: -1
Area with more non-profits: -1
Part-time worker: -1
Area with better white health: -2
Clerical worker: -2
No high school diploma: -3
More diverse area: -3
More educated area: -3
Bachelor’s degree (max): -9
Post-grad degree: -16
Although it’s hard to compare the importance of different variables, Rothwell says you can use them to make rough predictions. A college-educated black man would, based on those factors alone, have a 21% chance of supporting Trump (35 baseline + 14 – 19 – 9); add in other factors and that number could go higher or lower.
Note that non-binary variables like “richer” refer to a one standard deviation from average.
Rothwell also observed a telling trend about the economic anxiety of Trump supporters. 53% of Trump supporters worried about money, based on responses to several questions, compared to 46% of non-supporters. The same trend held true at every income level. Among households earning more than $200,000, 42% of Trump supporters worried about money compared to 30% of non-supporters.
People’s opinions about Trump, of course, are still changing.
“After the debates and revelations about sexual misconduct, alleged, his support has fallen again to close to … something like 31 percentage points instead of 35,” Rothwell said. “The male variable … would probably go up a little bit, but some of the other factors would change to lower his overall support.”
In the last published Gallup data, looking at late September, Hillary Clinton had a 41% favorability rating. That’s a big enough difference that the odds are strongly in her favour. Trump currently has only a 7% chance of winning the presidency, according to the New York Times election model.
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