The Emerging Democratic Majority has arrived: women, minorities, and professionals

Benjy Sarlin at TPM interviewed the guy who called 2012 in 2002:

Calling all 50 states the day before the election as Nate Silver did is one thing — predicting President Obama’s winning majority 10 years in advance is hard to top.

But that’s what Ruy Teixeira did. Since 2002, when Democrats were at a low point and sinking lower, Teixeira has consistently argued that long-term demographic trends pointed to brighter days ahead for the party. He and John Judis published a book that year, “The Emerging Democratic Majority,” that envisioned a governing majority in the next decade consisting of three rapidly growing voting blocs — women, minorities, and professionals.

Along with young voters, these three groups are credited with powering Obama’s 2008 and 2012 victories. Latinos were critical in contests across the country on Tuesday, especially in Western states like New Mexico (no longer even a swing state), Nevada, and Colorado. African American turnout helped put Obama over the top in states like Ohio. Huge advantages with women helped secure states like Iowa (28% gender gap). And a growing professional class in Virginia and North Carolina — solid red states when Teixeira published his book — put the former in Obama’s camp for a second straight election and kept the latter competitive until the end.

It’s easy to forget now, but after President Bush won re-election in 2004, there was a popular school of thought that America was entering an extended period in which Republicans would hold an unshakable majority. Karl Rove claimed the results as a “realignment” in which evangelical and suburban turnout would destroy the Democrats’ viability as a national party. Other observers like  Michael Barone backed him up. Perhaps not coincidentally, both of them predicted a Romney landslide last week.

Teixeira stuck by his theory, however, and now one of the big post-election questions is whether Obama’s majority is the new political reality in America or a passing phase. TPM talked to Teixeira, now a senior fellow at the Center for American Progress, a liberal DC think tank, on Thursday about what his research tells him about the future of the party…

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