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The Long Southern StrategyHow Chasing White Voters in the South Changed American Politics$
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Angie Maxwell and Todd Shields

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780190265960

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: August 2019

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190265960.001.0001

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Conclusion

Conclusion

An Echo, Not a Choice

Chapter:
(p.320) Conclusion
Source:
The Long Southern Strategy
Author(s):

Angie Maxwell

Todd Shields

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/oso/9780190265960.003.0011

The Long Southern Strategy was “long” because all three components of the strategy—choosing to exploit white racial angst, fear of feminism, and evangelical righteousness—were necessary to build a solid red base in the states of the old Confederacy. The stark polarization that resulted from these partisan choices unraveled the New Deal coalition. It also redivided white Americans not just along the Mason-Dixon line, but across the imagined fault line of southern identity. Thus, conservatism was redefined on the basis of white southern identity, and that definition became the baseline ideology of the Republican brand nationwide. A partisan sorting and realignment followed. As a result, the distribution of white Americans who harbor Racial Resentment or Modern Sexist attitudes or who identify as Christian fundamentalists is no longer even across the parties, and now, within the GOP, there is not enough opposition to fully suppress such prejudice or religiosity.

Keywords:   southern white identity, Racial Resentment, Modern Sexism, Christian Fundamentalism, 2016 election, Trump voters, partisan sorting, Long Southern Strategy, southern realignment

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