Texan99 put up a National Review article that deserves my audience as well. Kevin D. Williamson argues that it is risk-aversion, not dependence, that keeps single women and African-Americans voting for Democrats. He is not claiming that Democrats actually deliver on the promises - they do partly, but at the cost of wealth-creation - but that this is what they market, and the Republicans don't.
I don't know how one measures motives, but this seems intuitively sound to me.
I am playing in my head with whether this also carries through in foreign policy. Is going to war or not going to war the higher risk strategy?