I’m having a problem with the formatting for it, but even on first glance I’m struck by the way that Cook is basically conceding that the Democrats’ cause for optimism – and, judging from the title (Mapping the 2016 Electorate: Demographics Don’t Guarantee a Democratic White House) Charlie Cook isn’t as optimistic – starts by conceding that Hillary Clinton needs no net change in the black vote to even be able to hope to win. That is by no means assured in the 2016 election. Cook kind of hints at it in the tables, where he pegs the GOP’s must-win numbers among African-Americans at 10% – which, of course, was the old rule-of-thumb number prior to 2008.
The big question is, then: does Barack Obama real improvement in 2008 and 2012 among black voters represent the Democrats’ new floor, or its ceiling? – Because if it’s the ceiling* then the Democratic candidate is pretty much hosed. And no, I don’t expect that a year of race-baiting by Democrats is going to help in that case; although God knows the Democrats are going to be extremely motivated in trying to prove me wrong.
*It’s the ceiling. It might have been the floor if Barack Obama had done anything to help break the logjam that keeps minority Democratic candidates and politicians from moving upward in their party’s hierarchy. But Obama’s in it for Obama.