"[Hillary] noticeably won the votes of those on lower incomes and without college degrees. In the words of that Clinton adviser: 'If you have a social need, you're with Hillary. If you want Obama to be your imaginary hip black friend and you're young and you have no social needs, then he's cool.'"---
Exit polls from the Iowa caucuses revealed one putative surprise--Obama's victory among (non-menopausal) women. As the caucus and primary-goers are even more educated, affluent, and white than are the voters who show up on general election day, and given that both states are relatively egalitarian and well-off, the demographics aren't as potentially exciting as they'll be in November.
Still, a few things strike me as worth knowing, if you hadn't already been aware of as much:
- The IQ of the average Obama supporter is probably higher than the IQ of the average Hillary voter is. He makes more money and is better educated, anyway.
In Iowa, among those making over $100,000 (one-fifth of those participating on the Democratic side), Obama beat Hillary by more than 2:1 (41%-19%). Among those making over $50,000, representing nearly two-thirds of caucus-goers (63%), Obama came out ahead, 3:2 (36% to 23%). (Click on the graphics to more easily view them).
In New Hampshire, Obama bested Hillary among post-graduates, 43%-31%. And the post-grad group isn't a diminutive one--nearly one-fourth (23%) of those who participated in the NH primary on the Democratic side belonged to it.
Among those who had acquired up to a high school diploma (one-fifth of the total), Obama got clobbered, 48%-30%.
To be fair to the Senator, she did best among old fogies, who are less likely to have received as much education and a sizable portion of whom earn incomes today that are only a fraction of what they earned in the past. However, she (10%) was pounded by Obama (57%), and beaten by Edwards (14%), among those between the ages of 18-29, a bloc that comprises 17% of the total on the Democratic side, so it's hard to gauge if she had much of a built-in disadvantage (or even advantage) in this sense, or if it is essentially a wash.
- Despite Edwards' "Two Americas" theme, it wasn't the "hard working common man" but the "wealthy and privileged" who rallied to his side (in Iowa--the New Hampshire exit poll did not inquire about income). More than 21% of those who voted for him make over $100,000 per year. Among Obama's supporters, a little under 20% are in the six-figure range. For Clinton, fewer than 12% are.
- In New Hampshire, GOP voters stood behind their respective candidates more in consequence of the issues most important to them than due to their demographic profiles (although McCain did beat Romney handily among post-grads, 45%-32%).
Among voters who perceived illegal immigration as the most important issue facing the nation (23% of the Republican total), Romney outdid McCain by a walloping 3:1 ratio (56%-19%). For those who placed the most importance on the Iraq war, McCain beat Romney, 45%-27%.
Although McCain and President Bush locked horns in 2000, the Arizonan looks to be the Republican contender most likely to carry on Bush's invade-the-world, invite-the-world policies if he wins in November.