18 Jul What She Wants in 2024
The Wall Street Journal lays out the analysis succinctly: Suburban voters carried Donald Trump into the White House in 2016, and white suburban women helped Joe Biden unseat him four years later. In 2020, President Biden prevailed by narrowly winning states Mr. Trump had won in 2016, namely Wisconsin, Arizona, Georgia, Michigan, and Pennsylvania, with non-city, non-rural white females making the difference at the polls.
Your humble blogger is married to a fine representative of the demographic highlighted in the recent article, “White Women in Suburbs Key Voting Bloc for 2024.” Born in a small town, Mrs. Blogger landed a CPA job in Minneapolis after college and has lived in the Twin Cities suburbs for 36 years. With ancestors from Germany and Sweden, her skin is very pale, and she definitely intends to vote in 2024, thus fitting her squarely into every aspect of the newspaper headline.
From that sample size of one, let us take a look at what type of candidates Mrs. Blogger and her cohort would like to see when they drive, walk, or jog from their cul-de-sacs and tree-lined streets to polling places next November.
Fighting off the temptation to write that she can be “quite demanding” – which would put it far, far, far too harshly – we will simply say that today’s subject has a long list of traits she likes to see in a politician (not to mention a husband). We only have space here for the most important qualities that will sway her presidential vote.
Careful with spending money. America is deeply in debt and has not had a balanced budget in decades. Government spending is persistently too high. Economic growth needs to increase to fix such problems. Inflation, particularly in the grocery store and service industries, makes incomes not go as far. These things bother at least one white suburban woman.
New and different. Neither Joe Biden or Donald Trump appeals to her. One is too tethered to the extreme liberal wing of his party, and the other too crazy (in a bad way). The only reason to vote for either would be to keep the worse one from being elected. She wants someone else to lead our nation.
Hope-inspiring. We expect to have many years left to live, and two generations of family now are lined up behind us. Like most people, especially those with strong maternal instincts, today’s example longs for national leaders who evoke confidence that America will thrive into the future.
Moral. It is not too much to ask for candidates to be honest, law-abiding, unselfish people of integrity.
Protective from crime and calamity. One thing this WSW looks to her federal government to foster is a safe place in which to live and raise a family. No nuclear destruction, to name a major example. Good laws and enforcement of them, is a more day-to-day category. While state and local governments bear most of the burden of daily protection, the federal government can set the tone and provide resources to enhance public safety.
Respectful and respected. Our next President must treat people as beings created in the image of God, as we all are, with no particular group being any more or less important than any other group. Rather than hurling insults or promoting division and hatred, our nation’s leader must set a respectful tone at home and abroad. In turn, this will bring respect to the office, and to our nation domestically and overseas, helping turn around the disrespectful attitude Americans have adopted.
Energetic. Laziness and inattention are unacceptable, she would say.
Service-oriented. A huge believer in using one’s spiritual gifts to serve God and our fellow humans, this blogger’s better half would like to see a servant leader in the White House.
Notice that party affiliation is not listed. Nor is the person’s position on one specific political issue going to make the difference. This particular white suburban woman wants more than that.
She wants a strong, smart, sensible, and principled leader.
Are There Enough Who Agree?
It surely is true that the so-called “bloc” of white suburban women is not unanimous on any topic, and certainly no one perfectly replicates my beloved spouse. Yet the American suburbs indeed contain millions of women who, like the subject of this post, have or had professional careers, are mothers and grandmothers, try to live out their religious faiths and respect traditions, all while also being tech-savvy, educated, well-traveled, and informed citizens.
We happen to think the qualities listed above would attract many such women, along with voters of all demographics.
Hopefully, the number of people voting along these lines will be enough to determine the 2024 elections, as the Wall Street Journal analysis suggests.
Written by Quentin R. Wittrock, founder of Principle Based Politics.
Look for his posts each week, as this blog will explore and promote the idea of principle in politics, both as to individual elected leaders and our federal government as an institution.