Stuff You Should Consume - Sept 21, 2022
Welcome to this week’s edition of “Stuff You Should Consume” — a weekly email for Message Box subscribers with important and interesting political content.
“Majority of Latino Voters Out of G.O.P.’s Reach, New Poll Shows” by Jennifer Medina, Jazmine Ulloa, and Ruth Igielnik, New York Times
Democrats have long assumed that the growing Latino electorate would doom Republicans, and the prospect of an increasingly diverse electorate has fueled anxieties among conservatives. The 2020 election results — in which Mr. Trump gained an estimated eight percentage points among Hispanic voters compared to 2016 — began changing both parties’ outlooks. The Times/Siena poll shows that historic allegiances and beliefs on core issues remain entrenched, though some shifts are striking.
While majorities of Hispanic voters side with Democrats on social and cultural issues, sizable shares hold beliefs aligned with Republicans: More than a third of Hispanic voters say they agree more with the G.O.P. on crime and policing, and four out of 10 Hispanic voters have concerns that the Democratic Party has gone too far on race and gender. Hispanic voters view economic issues as the most important factor determining their vote this year and are evenly split on which party they agree with more on the economy.
“Can Democrats break the GOP stranglehold on the states?” by Ron Brownstein, CNN
Over the past two years, Republicans have used their dominant hold on most state legislatures to advance a polarizing agenda moving social policy sharply to the right on issues from abortion and voting to book bans and classroom teaching of race and gender.
Now, a new analysis has found that over the next decade, Democrats will face an uphill challenge to dislodge the GOP state house advantage that has allowed conservatives to advance this agenda so broadly and so quickly. In the battle for control of state legislatures, "Democrats face a defensive outlook over the decade ahead," the Democratic group Forward Majority concludes in a report released Monday. "Good years for Democrats are ones in which power will come down to razor-thin margins; in contrast, good years for Republicans will be total routs."
“Fatigue, traditionalism, and engagement: news habits and attitudes of the Gen Z and Millennial generations,” AP/NORC Media Insight Project
Only about a quarter of 16- to 40-year-olds have a positive view of the news media generally or national news outlets particularly (23%). Trust in local news media, while not great, is higher. About a third (35%) have favorable attitudes toward local media outlets. But when we dig deeper, there are signals of higher confidence. For instance, most Gen Z and Millennials find local TV stations or their websites (53%), local newspapers in print or online (59%), and even national newspapers in print or online (54%) as completely or very reliable when getting “hard news” topics. The numbers are similar for “news you can use” topics such as news about health or products.
“When tragedy becomes banal: Why news consumers experience crisis fatigue” by Rebecca Rozelle-Stone, Nieman Lab (h/t FWIW)
This year, a Reuters Institute analysis showed that interest in news has decreased sharply across all markets, from 63% in 2017 to 51% in 2022, while a full 15% of Americans have disconnected from news coverage altogether.
According to the Reuters report, the reasons for this differ, in part, with political affiliation. Conservative voters tend to avoid the news because they deem it untrustworthy or biased, while liberal voters avoid news because of feelings of powerlessness and fatigue. Online news, with its perpetual drive to keep eyes trained on screens, is unwittingly undermining its own goals: to provide news and keep the public informed