As the 2022 midterm elections approach, Democrats face the growing issue of electability in sparsely populated areas. Because of the way America’s population is distributed, and its political structure, rural voters have more disproportionate electoral power.
This advantage means that at the national level, Republicans often do not need to compete to win a majority of votes in order to win elections. For one researcher, this means Democrats must court rural voters to win both locally and nationally.
“Every community has these issues that are highly important and salient to people on the ground, but don’t map onto the national political discourse.” — Kal Munis, Utah Valley University
Listen: A researcher explains how Democrats can achieve electoral success with rural voters.
Kal Munis is an assistant professor of political science at Utah Valley University. He’s also the author of a new piece titled, “Go Local, Young Democrat: How nationalization of everything is widening the urban-rural divide, and what Democrats can do about it.”
Munis believes Democrats can win more votes in rural areas by focusing on the specific needs of individual communities.
“Every community has these issues that are highly important and salient to people on the ground, but don’t map onto the national political discourse,” says Munis. “Identify these issues… [and] really hammer those.”