Sun Belt or Rust Belt? Democrats search for path to power

Sun Belt or Rust Belt? Democrats search for path to power

Democrats want to win both the White House and Senate next year to reverse Republican gains during President Donald Trump’s administration. But to do that they have to take two conflicting paths.

Both parties think the presidential race runs through the Rust Belt, particularly the trio of states that gave Trump his 2016 victory — Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin. But the party’s best route to a Senate majority is by picking up seats in the Sun Belt states of Arizona, Georgia, North Carolina and Texas.

The regions have different politics. The Rust Belt is older and whiter, but white voters there have been more likely to vote Democratic than those in the better-educated Sun Belt. Meanwhile, the Sun Belt has fast-growing minority populations that dwarf those in the presidential battleground.

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