How Donald Trump Won 2016 the Presidential Election, According To NPR
Whites without college degrees preferred Trump by 39 points.
Whites with college degrees were split almost evenly (Trump up by four, which was probably within the MOE).
In the 1990s, whites with and without degrees voted almost identically. The white blue-collar union guys were once a solid bloc for the Democratic party over the years, and that sub-group kept the overall tally for the white non-degreed group split. Well, union households still prefer Democrats, but only slightly (Hillary got 51% of them), so the Donkey stranglehold has been broken. With that sub-group split, the non-degreed group has moved ever more toward the right. Exit polls in the previous three elections in this century showed a gap of 12-14 points between degreed and non-degreed whites, and Trump just about tripled the gap to 35.
The CNN exit polls showed the education split in more detail - further split between men and women:
White women with degrees: Clinton by 6
White women without degrees: Trump by 28
White men with degrees: Trump by 15
White men without degrees: Trump by 49
Consider this: if white men without degrees are splitting 72-23 for Trump, but the ones in unions are splitting about in half, then non-degreed white males who are not in unions must be voting very close to 100% for Trump.
There were some other important facts and some surprises within the CNN polls:
* Trump won 13% of black men and 33% of latino men. My guesses would have been lower.
* Trump won the independent vote 48-42. That is a critical fact, because those voters who consider themselves independents are nearly a third of the electorate. Since self-professed Democrats outnumber Republicans by four points, a big margin in the independent vote is essential for Republican victory. That margin (approximately a third of six points - therefore, roughly two points) was not enough to shift the country's popular vote to Trump, but it seems to have been enough to swing a lot of important states. Trump won Wisconsin by a point, Pennsylvania by a point, Florida by a point - that's 59 electoral votes swung by a single point in each state.