The Racial Makeup Of Obama, Romney Presidential Coalitions

White voters have leaned increasingly Republican in recent elections, although still not nearly as overwhelmingly as blacks and Latinos lean Democratic.

When it comes to building a winning coalition, President Obama and Republican nominee Mitt Romney have very distinct paths to victory. Romney is betting on winning big with white voters. The president’s coalition was substantially more diverse in 2008, and he’s looking to expand his reach in 2012 enough to offset Romney’s play for white voters.

So what is the racial composition of the support for these two men as we exit the conventions?

There’s no easy, straightforward way to answer that question. It requires a deep dive into exit polling, public opinion surveys, voter registration numbers and census data. So the below chart is a proxy. It takes the share of the overall support among these three groups — based on the current polling of the presidential race contained in our PollTracker Averages of White, African-American and Latino voters — and applies those percentages to 2010 census data of the total U.S. voting-age populations of those groups:


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