Each new election cycle seems to bring about claims about a previously underappreciated demographic group that candidates need to pay attention to. Several pollsters argue that “Walmart Moms” will help decide the 2012 elections:
From the Hill: “Republican pollster Neil Newhouse and Democratic pollster Margie Omero are going shopping at Walmart. For voters. The pair told attendees at a Christian Science Monitor breakfast this morning that a key demographic in 2012 will be a group of voters they call Walmart Moms. The successors to Soccer Moms and Hockey Moms, Walmart Moms are female voters with children 18 or younger who shop at the discount retailer at least once a month. According to Newhouse and Omero, these women make up 14% of the electorate.”
Laugh at their clothes. Laugh at their fashion faux pas. They’ll see you on Election Day.
I wonder how much these “Walmart Moms” line up with the suburban independent demographic that Joel Kotkin argued has determined the outcome of the last few national elections.
Walmart Moms are more interested in microeconomic issues such as college affordability than macroeconomic concerns such as the debt ceiling. The literature the pollsters distributed at the breakfast said, “It will be important for candidates to clearly communicate how their policies or ideas will personally impact these women and their households for the better.”
So it is about household economics and basic middle-class consumer items (groceries + college educations). Is there a politician that could effectively link these micro and macroeconomic concerns so that the American public understands the relationship between the two?