It’s true – since 1948 a Democratic White House has meant higher economic growth across all economic classes, especially poorer people, but also for the richest people in society.

Bartels shows in his book that this difference is not a statistical artifact or a fluke. It is not the result of Democrats coming to power during better economic times, or of Republicans reining in the unsustainable excesses of Democratic administrations they replace. (It turns out that the same pattern prevails even when a Republican president is succeeded by another Republican.) These numbers are real and they are the outcome of partisan differences in policy. So if you are one of those who have bought the story that income distribution is the result of pure market forces and technological changes, with politics playing no role–think again.

I can’t wait to read Bartles’ book. But the implication is clear – Republican polices, either by design or ineptitude, are an attack on the lower and middle classes, and the GOP manages to fool people into believing that they are better on economic terms, despite the evidence proving the opposite.

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