THE slow decline of marriage is upending American politics. In the 2012 presidential election, unmarried women accounted for nearly a quarter of all votes cast. Their votes went decisively to Barack Obama, by 36 percentage points.This aspect of the 2012 election demographics was reported here hast year, and elsewhere.
You might not think that a group that runs from not-yet-married college students to inner-city single mothers and divorced professionals had much in common. Yet unmarried women are spectacularly loyal to the Democrats—if they vote, which many do not. (Widows are outliers, voting more like married women.) The “marriage gap” dwarfs the sex gap, by which women as a whole have long favoured Democrats: Mr Obama beat Mitt Romney by a less dramatic 11 points among female voters.
The trend continues this year, as a Democrat won the single woman vote by being pro-divorce:
In November’s election for governor of Virginia — a race won narrowly by Terry McAuliffe, a Democratic fundraiser and member of Bill and Hillary Clinton’s inner circle — fully two-thirds of voters chosen for special attention by Democratic get-out-the-vote teams were unmarried women, says Michael Halle, a McAuliffe campaign guru. Unmarried women voted for Mr McAuliffe by a thumping 42 percentage-point margin over his Republican rival, Ken Cuccinelli, arguably handing him victory. (Married women backed Mr Cuccinelli by nine points.)The magazine is a little confused about cause and effect. The decline of marriage is not just some social trend that happens to be favoring the Democrats. The Democrats have been the anti-family party for decades.
... Poll-testing of different attacking strategies found single women outraged by Mr Cuccinelli’s social crusades. “Divorce was a big one,” Mr Halle fondly recalls.
As reported here last year, American electoral politics have largely boiled down to demographics, with Democrats getting their crucial votes from the unmarrieds, non-Christians, non-whites, and low info voters. Democrats can win by promoting policies to increase the populations of those demographics.