Khalilah Brown-Dean, associate professor of political science in the College of Arts and Sciences, and Scott McLean, professor of political science, were quoted in the New Haven Register on race factors in the New Haven mayoral contest.
McLean told the daily newspaper that race does not play a big factor in the election.
“I think it is only incidentally racial,” he said.
The fundamental division, he said, is between neighborhoods of middle class, highly educated, white collar voters versus more blue collar, unionized residents who look to more traditional expectations from the Democratic Party.
Brown-Dean said one of the big misjudgments is that black voters will only vote for a black candidate, if that is a possibility.
“The reality is that in elections, races remains a salient factor, but it is a hurdle for everyone,” Brown-Dean said.
Voters tend to gravitate toward candidates who they feel best understand their own personal situation, she said.