Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Who's the Party of Old White People? (Presidental Candidate Version...)

For several year's there's been this notion that the Republican Party is the party of "old white people." This has been based mostly on the voting habits of older white males, to be specific, which skew hard to the right side of most issues.

As the pool of Presidential wannabees begins to form on both sides of the aisle, Reasonable Conversation wanted to see how age was being reflected from both parties announced and presumed/potential candidates. To increase the sample size of this exercise, we'll also include the heads of both Parties National Committees,

First, the Republicans:

Jeb Bush - 62 years old
Marco Rubio - 43 years old
Rand Paul - 52 years old
Ted Cruz - 44 years old
Scott Walker - 47 years old
Mike Huckabee - 59 years old
Chris Christie - 52 years old
Dr. Ben Carson - 63 years old
Carly Fiorina - 60 years old
Bobby Jindal - 43 years old
Rick Perry - 65 years old
Rick Santorum - 57 years old
RNC Chairman Reince Priebus - 42 years old
Average age: 53.0 years old

Next, the Democrats:

Hillary Clinton -67 years old
Bernie Sanders - 73 years old
Martin O'Malley - 52 years old
Jim Webb - 69 years old
Elizabeth Warren - 65 years old
Joe Biden - 72 years old
DNC Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Shultz - 48 years old
Average age: 63.72 years old

Let's limit each group to only the strongest candidates...


Jeb Bush - 62
Scott Walker - 47
Marco Rubio - 43
Mike Huckabee - 59
Average age: 52.8 years old


Hillary Clinton - 67
Bernie Sanders - 73
Average age: 70.0 years old

Strictly by the numbers, the GOP field is significantly younger than the top two Democratic candidates. Age alone doesn't dictate policy preferences as clearly the two parties seem to cater to different voters.

I'm on record as saying I'm underwhelmed by a Clinton candidacy. I think Senator Sanders is a long shot to say the least. An exercise like this provides very, very limited information beyond the age of the candidates. It also however shows us the differences between the depth of each Paty's bench of national aspirants. The Democrats would be wise to identify and promote some younger high upside members of their party to raise their national profile.

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