In a thoughtful column, E. J. Dionne addresses the claims that rich elitists tend to vote Democratic. It's true, he admits, in the relatively rich states, most of which John Kerry carried in 2004. But, citing and crediting a paper by political scientists, he points out that in relatively poor states, and especially in the South, there is a big divide between high-income voters, who vote heavily Republican, and lower-income voters, who are split, with lower-income blacks voting heavily Democratic and lower-income whites voting Republican but by smaller margins than high-income whites. All true, and a reasonably fair analysis.
But it is interesting that liberals very much dislike hearing that at least certain classes of rich people vote Democratic. Dionne does note, accurately, that certain rich areas vote heavily Democratic:
But conservatives counter that Democrats are the party of choice in swank, well-educated latte enclaves: suburban Boston, New York and Philadelphia; Montgomery County, Md.; Microsoftland around Seattle; Silicon Valley; and Hollywood.
He might have added, if he had more than 700 or so words to make his point, that areas with high concentrations of trust-funderspeople who live mostly on inherited wealthare even more heavily Democratic. I wrote a column last year on what I called the trust-funder left, which inspired a lot of angry E-mail from liberals who were enraged. They evidently like to think of the Democrats as the party of the virtuous working class, not of the idle rich.
Dionne seems to be uncomfortable also with the idea that the Democrats depend heavily on elite rich voters who are out of touch with Middle America. He points out, accurately, that that's not the entire picture. But if he's not defensive about Democrats' rich elites, why bother to write the column?