A little while ago, I partially recanted my long-standing rejection of the idea that “generations” are a useful way of thinking about such issues as political attitudes. The UK elections showed a very strong age effect, reflecting the way that the politics of nostalgia, represented by Brexit, appeal to the old and appal the young.
The same appears to be true of “Make America Great Again”, at least according to the exit polls. In every racial group, there’s a clear cohort effect, with the younger cohorts favouring the Democrats.
& Exit poll results, by age and race
The Republicans had majority support only among whites over 45.
The age effect would probably be a bit smaller if education and urban/rural location were taken into account, but it’s still striking.
Regarding the political implications I said last time
If current demographic trends continue, and nothing else changes, the political right will be doomed by demography to permanent minority status. That’s possible, but one-party dominance has rarely lasted long in the countries I’m talking about. And, as Stein’s Law has it, if a trend can’t continue, it won’t.
So, a long period of leftwing success would presumably produce a political realignment in which culture war issues are no longer a dividing line. On the other hand, if leftwing governments are elected and fail to deliver on their promises (or worse, implement their promises and fail disastrously) their support among currently young cohorts may be replaced by permanent oppositions.
Of course, this assumes that democratic processes survive long enough for these demographic processes to do their work.