Shifting Shares: Demographic Change, Differential Mobility, and Electoral Trends in New York City, 2000 to 2011

DOWNLOAD PDF READ IN FULL SCREEN By John Mollenkopf, Steven Romalewski, Leslie Hirsch and Joe Pereira

Over the past decade, the New York City economy has more amply rewarded some groups than others, though all groups took an income hit in the years after the financial and economic crises of 2008. Concurrently, New York City experienced significant changes in the overall composition of the city’s population in terms of race and ethnicity. Different groups have followed different trajectories, with members of native born white married couple families doing best and members of native born black and Latino single parent families doing worst. Furthermore, the population as a whole differs from those who are voting age citizens and thus belong to its potential electorate.

The small fraction of the city’s potentially eligible voting age citizenry who will vote in the 2013 Democratic primary is a key facet of the city’s politics. It is clear from the electoral trends that while relatively better-off whites continue to exercise disproportionate political influence, particularly in forming the core of a city-wide electoral majority for their favored candidate, they cannot do it without allies. To a degree, then, their influence depends on the persistence of divisions among the elements of an alternative coalition drawing support from black, Latino, Asian, and liberal white constituencies. These divisions reflect real differences in the socio-economic positions and goals of these groups, as well as political competition among them. As a result, the prospects are better than they have been in a decade for Democrats to overcome their differences and form a majority.