Writing in the Wall Street Journal last week, Daniel Henninger asks:
How did the 2004 election map of the United States come to look like a color-field painting by Barnett Newman? In fact, if you adjust the map’s colors for votes by county (as at the Web sites for CNN and USA Today), even the blue states turn mostly red. Pennsylvania is blue, but between blue Philadelphia and Pittsburgh every county in the state is red. California, except for the coastline, is almost entirely red.
Unsurprisingly, he has an answer:
This didn’t happen last Tuesday.The color-coding of the 2004 election began around 1965 in the politics of the Vietnam era. The Democratic Party today is the product of a generational shift that began in those years.
Henninger blames it all on the “Vietnam generation” and their wacky protest politics…but let’s see did anything else happen around that time, causing a massive shift in voting patterns, particularly in the South? Anything that Henninger neglects to mention, because it would, you know, completely undermine his already-shaky thesis?
Update: more maps for Henninger to contemplate.