David Russell Moore

New York, NY


Projects & Notes, Semi-Abandoned WP Install

Created Jan. 2011, content is dated. Reachable at @ppolitics or @sanschain on micropublishing.



Resources on Voter Persuasion and Non-Voter Motivation 2016


Empirical resources, additions welcome – email: davidrussellmoore at gmail service. See my previous post in March 2016: Election science on electoral college counts. Wellstone Action resources (formerly New Organizing Institute).

Pew – U.S. Elections, 2016. Why supporting Trump, 27% supporters responded: “not a politician, will bring change”.

Bill Moyers’ site showcases March 2016 research: “Two-thirds of white evangelicals say that immigrants are a burden on the country because they take jobs, housing and health care. Six in 10 say it bothers them when they come into contact with immigrants who speak little English. And nearly three quarters say that the values of Islam are at odds with American values and way of life… I think these voters are best understood not as values voters, not even as Tea Party voters, but as nostalgia voters, these voters that are looking back to — they’re culturally and economically disaffected voters that are anxious to hold on to a white conservative Christian culture that’s passing from the scene.”

Stanford, 2012: “Practically speaking though, the results suggest voter mobilization efforts should emphasize high turnout, especially when targeting occasional and low-participation voters… In another study, researchers showed that people are more likely to head for the ballots when they are encouraged to see voting as a noble aspect of their character.”

Non-Voters in America, 2012 research: “Pessimists are the largest group of nonvoters. They earned their label because,compared with other nonvoters, they are more likely to think the country is headed on the wrong track (49 percent compared with 54 percent of nonvoters overall),and are more likely to dislike both the 2012 political candidates and the government more generally. They are also more pessimistic about their economic future (56percent think it will get worse over the next year, an attitude shared by only 43percent of all nonvoters).”

FiveThirtyEight (Nate Silver), May 2106:  ”The median household income of a Trump voter so far in the primaries is about $72,000, based on estimates derived from exit polls and Census Bureau data. That’s lower than the $91,000 median for Kasich voters. But it’s well above the national median household income of about $56,000. It’s also higher than the median income for Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders supporters, which is around $61,000 for both.”


On GOP federal budgeting, possible angles for pushing back on “political outsider/will bring change”:

In the current 114th U.S. Congress, 68 of 168 Democrats in the House of Representatives (out of 435 total voting reps in the lower chamber) are members of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, the largest such caucus among House Dems. Republicans hold approx. 247 House seats and currently control the U.S. Senate as well, approx. 54-46.

The CPC’s “Better off Budget” proposal of 2015, published when this GOP-controlled Congress started, would be enacted through a number of legislative items and government policies. In summary of its proposed economic impact: “Specifically, the Better Off Budget would increase spending on job creation and public investment measures by $485 billion in calendar year 2014, $463 billion in 2015, and $398 billion in 2016, relative to CBO’s current law baseline… The People’s Budget would increase revenue by roughly $95 billion in calendar year 2016 and $532 billion in 2017, relative to current law… On net, The People’s Budget would boost GDP by $565 billion (3 percent) from calendar year 2016 to 2017 relative to CBO’s current law baseline.”

How was this calculated? EPI: “All economic impacts are estimated relative to CBO’s current law baseline… This includes job-creation measures, nondefense discretionary spending increases, and repeal of Budget Control Act discretionary spending caps.” How is it paid for? “In total, The People’s Budget raises $8.8 trillion in additional revenue relative to current law…” – through reverting to pre-2012 income tax rates on wealthy individuals, closing corporate tax loopholes, a financial transaction tax, and more. “A fiscal multiplier of 1.4 has been assigned to government spending provisions, and a fiscal multiplier of 0.5 has been assigned to tax provisions.”

For its part, the House GOP 2016 budget plan claims, on the purported economic benefits of lower tax rates and its economic policy slate: “…using the Congressional Budget Office’s (CBO) revenue rule of thumb, the growth from this proposal could be expected to generate between $300 billion and $800 billion in new revenues… a consumption-based system by including features such as the full-expensing of investment. The authors found substantial economic benefits in the short run and long run. These reforms would increase economic output by about 3 percent to 6 percent over the budget window… Gains this large could supply roughly $1 trillion to $2 trillion in extra revenue for deficit reduction within the budget window…”.

But what does the recent economic evidence suggest? Economist Michael Madowitz at the Center for American Progress summarizes in a 2014 survey of lessons learned since the Great Recession: “Even some of the sharper critics of activist fiscal policy have concluded that ‘the US aggregate multiplier for a temporary, deficit financed increase in government purchases … is probably between 0.8 and 1.5.’ … Turning to austerity before robust economic growth occurs can be self-defeating, depressing economic growth and increasing budget deficits in both the short term and the long term.” The Economic Policy Institute analyzed the 2015 version: “The budget’s near-term economic stimulus measures would create 4.7 million jobs in calendar year 2015 and an additional 3.8 million jobs over the following two years.” Why? “The pace of economic growth since the economy emerged from recession in July 2009 has been too sluggish to restore the economy to full health, and this slow pace of growth can be entirely explained by the drag from fiscal policy since 2011.”

How? In addition to the overall People’s Budget, Joseph Stiglitz’s plan leads with cutting defense spending. As the National Priorities Project reports, using Pew polls from 2016: “75 percent say the economy is a top priority.” Non-Voters in America 2012 research: “Both voter and nonvoters overwhelmingly consider economic and financialissues to be the most important problem facing the country (66 percent of voters and 62 percent of nonvoters).”

Compare to: economic performance under GOP Governors in KS, LA, NJ, WI, compared to MN. (Need better source than CNN.) Demos policy analyst Sean McElwee in Salon: “Research by David Wise finds that blue states (measured by presidential vote since 1988) outperform red states on a variety of economic and social measures (see chart below).” A good public Q&A topic…