Guy Molyneux

Guy Molyneux is a partner and senior vice president at Peter Hart
Research Associates, where he directs the firm's trade union research division.

Recent Articles

Talking Taxes with the Voters

The more people learn about the Tax Act, the less they like it.

This article appears in the Summer 2018 issue of The American Prospect magazine. Subscribe here . As they prepare to face the voters and defend their congressional majorities, Republicans face serious challenges. Positioned as the in-party in an off-year election, they can anticipate enhanced Democratic turnout that creates an unfavorable battlefield. An unpopular president, weak fundraising, and a wave of incumbent retirements further stack the deck against the GOP. Republicans, however, believe they have an ace in the hole that will preserve their majorities: the tax law they passed in December 2017. Republicans tout the tax law as both their most important policy accomplishment and the best political weapon they have. Matt Gorman, communications director for the National Republican Congressional Committee, says, “It’s very clear that tax reform was going to be the biggest legislative crown jewel of this Congress. That is a massive centerpiece of our campaign.” In...

A Tale of Two Populisms

The elite the white working class loathes is politicians.

(Photo: AP/Paul Sancya)
wwc_icon2.jpg This article appears in the Summer 2017 issue of The American Prospect magazine. Subscribe here . Many analysts, and leading Democrats, have attributed Donald Trump’s impressive 2016 vote margin among white working-class voters to his embrace of economic populism. In the wake of Trump’s victory, Senator Bernie Sanders suggested that “millions of Americans registered a protest vote on Tuesday, expressing their fierce opposition to an economic and political system that puts wealthy and corporate interests over their own. … Donald J. Trump won the White House because his campaign rhetoric successfully tapped into a very real and justified anger, an anger that many traditional Democrats feel.” Senator Elizabeth Warren also identified possible common ground on economic issues: “When President-elect Trump wants to take on these issues, when his goal is to increase the economic security of middle-class families, then count me in.”...

Mapping the White Working Class

A deep dive into the beliefs and sentiments of the moderates among them

AP Photo/Matt Rourke, File
This article appears in the Winter 2017 issue of The American Prospect magazine. Subscribe here . In the wake of the 2016 election, a long-standing debate within progressive circles has been reignited: Whatever shall we do with the white working class? The question arises because for the past two decades, white working-class voters have marched steadily to the right. What was a competitive constituency for Democrats in the 1990s—and had once been its foundation—has emerged as a strong base of support for the Republican Party. Progressives have had a sharply polarized response. On one side are those who maintain that we must redouble our efforts to win white working-class support. Even though its share of the electorate is in decline, the white working class remains too large for any movement seeking majority support to ignore. These progressives counsel a healthy dose of economic populism to win back these voters’ allegiances. On the other side are those resigned to...

Fancy Talk

(Flickr/White House photostream)
For some time, liberals have felt that their messenger-in-chief has been AWOL. In the wake of President Barack Obama's acquiescence to $38 billion in spending cuts, many targeted at vulnerable populations, New York Times columnist Paul Krugman wrote of the president that "arguably, all he has left is the bully pulpit. But he isn't even using that -- or, rather, he's using it to reinforce his enemies' narrative." Just three days later, the president allayed these fears somewhat when he released his own deficit-reduction plan as a direct counterpoint to the House Republican budget and delivered a powerful speech defending liberal ideals and a positive role for government. Obama called out the Republicans for seeking to end Medicare, slash vital investments in the future, and give new tax breaks to the wealthy. Nonetheless, concerns about the president's message, or lack thereof, predated his spending-cut deal with House Speaker John Boehner and will no doubt re-emerge at different...

The Big Five-Oh

A careful reading of recent presidential-election polls shows that the race is very close, and that if were held today, the result would likely mirror 2000's razor-close finish. If you had a different impression, that's certainly understandable, for nearly all media reporting on these same polls has suggested that George W. Bush enjoys a significant lead and will win comfortably barring a change in the race's dynamics. However, this media analysis is marred by a failure to take account of a phenomenon well-known to all political pollsters, the “incumbent 50-percent rule.” Almost all poll reporting focuses on the “spread,” that is, the difference in the percentage supporting Bush and John Kerry. If we take an average of the most recent ABC/Washington Post, CBS/ New York Times , and NBC/Wall Street Journal surveys, it shows Bush with 49 percent and Kerry with 44 percent among registered voters. Such survey results are invariably reduced to the shorthand “...