Obama's Cross-Class Coalition

By Richard Florida
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Andrew notes the real (positive) trend in the president's approval ratings. And Chris Bowers speculates, given recent (and ongoing) demographic shifts, that even Michael Dukakis would have won the 2008 election. Demographic shifts do seem to be on the Democrats' side.

But Obama may be on his way to fashioning a broad cross-class coalition, according to this Gallup survey which tracks the president's approval rating by occupation (pointer from Charlotta Mellander).

The president enjoys a nearly two-thirds (65 percent) approval rating overall. He enjoys relatively high approval ratings across major occupational or class groups, and his approval rating is rising across key groups.

Blue Collar Workers: Production and manufactuirng workers provided a 68 percent approval rating, up from 62 percent in March.

Service Workers: Service workers gave the president his highest approval rating in May, 71 percent.

Professional, Knowledge, Creative Workers: The president registered a 65 percent approval rating from professionals (up three points from March) and 60 percent from managers and government workers.

Entrepreneurs and Self-employed Workers: The president's biggest gains came from business owners and self-employed workers, where his approval rating increased 11 points from 44 percent ion March to 55 percent in May.

It's an open question whether Obama can maintain these numbers (Andrew Gelman suggests there are ways the GOP could "win it all back"), but right now they look impressive, especially given the very uneven ways the crisis is affecting these groups.

This article available online at:

http://www.theatlantic.com/national/archive/2009/06/obamas-cross-class-coalition/18633/