GOP still clings to its Southern strategy

The large proportion of whites who identify as Republican attests to continued success of the GOP’s "Southern strategy," Professor Lisa García Bedolla writes on the Berkeley Blog.

John Kasich and Scott Walker
GOP presidential hopefuls John Kasich and Scott Walker

In the 1960s, the Republican Party launched the Southern strategy – the use of coded racialized appeals to gain white votes.

Scott Walker

GOP Presidential hopeful Scott Walker

The large proportion of whites that now identify as Republican attests to the strategy’s resounding success,” says Lisa García Bedolla, professor of education and political science. And the continued influence of that strategy was evident at the debate in Cleveland among Republican candidates for President, she writes.

Although Fox News’ Facebook monitoring showed that “racial issues” were the top source of conversation among Facebook users during the week of the debate, “the Republican hopefuls engaged in a variety of rhetorical contortions in order not to mention the word ‘race’ or acknowledge the deep, pervasive racial inequalities that exist in US society,” says Garcia Bedolla.

“These candidates are still catering to their white base, holding strong to the Southern strategy.”

Read Lisa García Bedolla’s post on the Berkeley Blog.