Scrolling Headlines:

UMass women’s basketball suffers disappointing loss to St. Bonaventure at Mullins Center Thursday -

January 19, 2017

REPORT: Tom Masella out as defensive coordinator for UMass football -

January 19, 2017

Zach Lewis, bench carry UMass men’s basketball in win over St. Joe’s -

January 19, 2017

UMass women’s basketball handles Duquesne at home -

January 16, 2017

UMass men’s basketball’s late comeback falls short after blowing 15-point first-half lead -

January 15, 2017

UMass hockey outlasted at home against No. 6 UMass Lowell -

January 14, 2017

Hailey Leidel hits second buzzer beater of the season to give UMass women’s basketball win over Davidson -

January 13, 2017

UMass football hosts Maine at Fenway Park in 2017 -

January 12, 2017

UMass men’s basketball snaps losing streak and upsets Dayton Wednesday night at Mullins Center -

January 11, 2017

UMass women’s track and field takes second at Dartmouth Relays -

January 10, 2017

UMass hockey falls to No. 5 Boston University at Frozen Fenway -

January 8, 2017

UMass professor to make third appearance on ‘Jeopardy!’ -

January 8, 2017

UMass women’s basketball suffers brutal loss on road against Saint Joseph’s -

January 7, 2017

UMass men’s basketball drops thirds straight, falls to VCU 81-64 -

January 7, 2017

UMass men’s basketball drops tightly-contested conference matchup against George Mason Wednesday night -

January 4, 2017

Late-game defense preserves UMass women’s basketball’s win against rival Rhode Island -

January 4, 2017

AIC shuts out UMass hockey 3-0 at Mullins Center -

January 4, 2017

UMass professor to appear as contestant on ‘Jeopardy!’ Thursday night -

January 4, 2017

Penalties plague UMass hockey in Mariucci Classic championship game -

January 2, 2017

UMass men’s basketball falls in A-10 opener to St. Bonaventure and its veteran backcourt -

December 30, 2016

The undecided are unmasked

MCT

It is hard to believe that at this stage in the presidential election, that any voter is still undecided. But apparently, 15 percent of the electorate is still unsure of who to vote for.

Who are these indecisive citizens and how are the candidates eyeing for their attention? Three percent of undecided voters will not decide until the moment they cast their ballot, while the remaining 12 percent are persuadable to either candidate, according to Politico.

In an effort to understand the “undecided” voter, CNN has categorized them into six groups.

The millennial, the 20-25 year old college graduates with multiple part time jobs who are likely to live with their parents. Independent party affiliation who likely voted for Obama in 2008. They consider themselves optimist about American’s future but are turned off by traditional political rhetoric.

The catholic, who tend to be older, with a graduate or advanced degree and middle class social economic status. They have an active voter history with a tendency to lean right.  These votes would agree with Mitt Romney’s conservative social stance, but are more confident in President Obama’s economic plan. In four of the past five presidential elections, the future President carried the Catholic vote.

With the nation’s unemployment rate hovering around eight percent, the unemployed voter, is the key to election success. They have the most to gain in 2012. These voters were likely offended by Romney’s “47 percent” comment, but do not dislike the idea of a businessman in the White House.  They probably voted for Obama in 2008, but have not seen the change and economic improvement they were expecting.

In 2008, Latino’s overwhelmingly voted for Obama, with strong victories in southwest battleground states like Nevada.  This year the Latino vote could go either way.  The Republican family values appeal to the Latino base, but most voters still have a history of voting Democrat. The economy and immigration will be the deciding factors.

The single women demographic will count for almost a fourth of the voting population in 2012. They tend to lean Democratic and have yet to come out of the economic recession better than they were four years ago. In 2010, 55 percent of unmarried women relied on some form of federal assistance, compared to just 18 percent of married women.  Women’s issues from abortion, to birth control will also strongly affect the undecided voter. Romney has been inconsistent on his stance on abortion, while his running mate Paul Ryan’s pro-life stance is crystal clear. Obama’s birth control policy has ruffled feathers among the pious.

While it may seem like Evangelicals and Republicans are one in the same, this election these voters face a conundrum.  They have a hard time picturing a Mormon as president.  The Evangelical voter has a strong effect in important battleground states like Ohio because of their high voter turnout.  While it would be a stretch to suggest they are itching to vote the Democratic ticket, the option of staying at home on Election Day could hinder a Republican win.  This attitude might be short lived given the July Pew Research survey that showed 17 percent of Americans believe Obama is Muslim.

In the sprint to Election Day, both campaigns are focusing their resources on the undecided voters in unprecedented proportions. The latest estimation by the Center for Responsive Politics, revealed that 2012 campaign spending will reach $6 billon. Pollsters predict it will be a tight race and that the undecided voters could close the margins to within just a few percentage points.

Terranova Tasker is a Collegian columnist. She can be reached at ttasker@student.umass.edu

Comments
One Response to “The undecided are unmasked”
  1. Dr. Ed Cutting says:

    If unemployment was calculated the way it was in the 1930s, it would be higher now than then. If it was calculated the way it was in the 1970s, they would be using the U-6 figure which has been about 18%.
    .
    The quoted unemployment rate is the U-1 rate, which is a classic case of re-defining terms so as to make things look better than they actually are.

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