Bill Maher says presidential election ‘the last hurrah for the whites,’ ‘Battle of the Bulge’

Jeff Poor Media Reporter
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HBO’s Bill Maher said during his show’s Friday broadcast that he thinks the upcoming presidential election might be the last time Republicans can rely heavily on support from white voters, whose influence and importance he said is decreasing as the electorate becomes more diverse.

Maher rattled off some statistics to back up a recent claim by South Carolina Republican Sen. Lindsay Graham that the Republican Party’s traditional “angry white” voters are becoming a minority.

“Let me give you some more statistics here,” Maher said. “Born before 1945, 2-to-1 voting for Mitt Romney. If you’re born between ‘46 and ‘64, that’s the baby boomers — they’re for Mitt by two points. ’65 to ’78, they’re for Obama by a few, and ’79 to ’93, they’re for Obama, two to one. So it’s almost exactly the mirror image by age. And you know, the National Journal crunched the numbers and said Mitt Romney would need to win 61 percent of the white vote to win, and they said this is the last time anyone will try to do this. That’s how the article ended. I remember Lindsey Graham said something, the quote was, ‘We’re not generating enough angry white guys to stay in business.’”

Maher’s guest, president and co-founder of OurTime.org Matthew Segal, explained that the Republican Party’s “owners” would remain the same, even as the party’s members evolve.

“This is the last hurrah for the whites, is it not?” Maher said. “It’s like the Battle of the Bulge, really.”

Margaret Hoover, one of the Republicans on the “Real Time” panel and the author of “American Individualism: How a New Generation of Conservatives Can Save the Republican Party,” agreed.

“We need to reach out to Hispanics,” Hoover said. “We need to reach out to gays and lesbians. We need to reach out to women. We need to reach out to youths. That’s why I wrote my book about it. I mean, the work I do is try and reform the Republican Party. Rob [Reiner] and I have worked together on marriage equality in these four states — these four ballot initiatives. I’m going to Minnesota tomorrow. There are people who are working to modernize the party. You’re absolutely right.”

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Jeff Poor