Delaware is ‘normal America’

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Good afternoon everyone,

The refrain we often hear these days is that the elites are out of touch with the rest of America.

Too often they focus on coastal areas with immigrants, people of color and the high educated elites

Jim VandeHei, a former editor of the Politico website, started the most recent discussion. He said his regular visits to the white bread strongholds of Oshkosh, Wisconsin, and Lincoln, Maine reinforced his view that the political elite is out of touch with “normal America.”

His idea is that a third political party that would use the anti-establishment rhetoric of U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders and President Donald Trump could capture the “normal America” vote. VandeHei is no fan of either man.

A reality check came from Jed Kolko, an FiveThirtyEight.com.Kolko said VandeHei’s view of normal America does not reflect the nation’s actual demographic makeup.

Kolko pointed out that demographics of states like Delaware closely match the nation as a whole.After all, Delaware has deep blue New Castle County, bright red Sussex, and purple Kent.

The same is true for the Philadelphia metro area and its increasingly diverse blue suburbs that extend into New Castle County.

By contrast, smaller communities portrayed as the “normal America” tend to resemble America in the 1950s. One nearby example is nearby Lancaster, PA.

What does this mean for business and the media?

While the heartland has been neglected bypundits, sending narrowly focused advertising messages and stories – accompanied by images of people who do not reflect what America looks like – is bad business.

Sadly, this tendencyseems to be creeping into lifestyle publications and local advertisements that appear to be getting more targeted and more white these days.

The same is true for public officials. While working to hardenthe positions of fervent followers can prove successful for a time,demographics are changing and not in predictable directions.

Businesspeople who ignore the trends do so at their own peril.

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