The South and the Transformation of U.S. Politics

ISBN : 9780190065911

Charles S. Bullock, III; Susan A. MacManus; Jeremy D. Mayer; Mark J. Rozell
200 Pages
140 x 140 mm
Pub date
Nov 2019
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A strong case can be made that the South has had the greatest impact of any region on the transformation of U.S. politics and government. Since 1968, we have seen the demise of the "solid (Democratic) South" and the rise of the Republican-dominated South; the rise of the largely southern white evangelical religious right movement; and demographic changes that have vastly altered the political landscape of the region and national politics. Overriding all of these changes is the major constant of southern politics: race. Since the 1990s, the Republican Party has dominated politics in the Southern United States. Race relations were a large factor in this shift that began about a half century ago, but nonetheless, race and demographic change are once again realigning party politics in the region, this time back toward an emergent Democratic Party. Membership in the Southern Democratic Party is majority African American, Latino, and Asian, and rapidly expanding with an influx of immigrants, primarily Latino. While race continues to shape politics in the region, population growth is, as this book argues, the major factor affecting politics in the South. In fact, the populations of Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Virginia have grown more rapidly than the population of the nation as a whole over the past half century-and each of these states has gained at least one seat in Congress. These growth states are the ones in which populations are diversifying, economies are surging, and Democrats are making headway. They, along with Florida and Texas, are also among the most competitive states with the largest numbers of Electoral College votes in the region. It is likely, therefore, that among the key battlegrounds for determining the presidency will be the southern states with the fastest growing populations. This will especially be the case once the Latino population in Texas mobilizes. This book describes and analyzes the ways in which demographic change has shaped politics in the South since the late 1960s and may enable the Democratic Party in the future to re-take politics in the region, and even shut out Republicans from the nation's highest office.


Chapter 1: How the South Has Changed and Its Impact on National Politics
Chapter 2: The Changing Demographics of the South and Its Impact on National Politics
Chapter 3: The Changing Partisanship of the South and Its Impact on National Politics
Chapter 4: The Changing Politics of Race in the South and Its Impact on National Politics
Chapter 5: The Rise of the Christian Right in the South and Its Impact on National Politics
Chapter 6: New York Sybarite Conquers the South: Trump, Race, and the Southernization of American Politics
Chapter 7: Conclusion

About the author: 

Charles S. Bullock, III, is the Distinguished University Professor of Public and International Affairs, holds the Richard B. Russell Chair in Political Science, and is Josiah Meigs Distinguished Teaching Professor at the University of Georgia. In 2005 and 2009, he was a senior fellow at Oxford University's Rothermere American Institute. Susan A. MacManus is Distinguished University Professor Emerita at the University of South Florida. Beginning with the 2016 presidential election cycle, she has been the political analyst for WFTS-TV (ABC Action News, Tampa). She is the author of numerous publications on politics and history, and also serves on the UF Bob Graham Center For Public Service Council of Advisors and on the Board of Directors of the Florida TaxWatch Center for Florida Citizenship. Jeremy D. Mayer is Associate Professor in the Schar School of Policy and Government at George Mason University. He has written books and articles on diverse topics such as race and; presidential campaigns, public opinion toward torture, presidential image management, Christian right politics, federalism and gay rights, and comparative political socialization. Mark J. Rozell is the founding dean of the Schar School of Policy and Government, and the Ruth D. and John T. Hazel Chair in Public Policy at George Mason University. He is the author of numerous published studies on various topics in U.S. government and politics, including the presidency, religion and politics, southern politics, and interest group politics.

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