MORE trouble for Obama! By: Keith Valentine

After class today I began to think about all the what if’s? What if a new electorate of young voters is created? What if more Latinos turn out more than before? What if Obama doesn’t gain the support from white voters that he needs? While doing this I continuously went back to the big HUGE question of the Hillary Voters, I continuously have to ask myself if Hillary voters are going to line up behind Obama come November as he needs. Well this disturbing poll not only shows that they won’t, but that dreadful division between the peoples party really is running ramped.  The poll states that the same 58% of people that supported Hilary in June has not changed today.  I said in class, before the DNC began that if Obama wants a guaranteed victory in November he would put Clinton on the ticket, pride aside, weakness aside, if he wanted to win in November, Hillary would most likely have to be the VP.  

Well, startling enough, still to this day, this poll shows that nearly 30% of Hillary supporters are backing McCain, 70% say that Biden as VP had no effect on their decision for Obama, and even WORSE nearly 50% of Hilary’s former supporters, that are still undecided say that Pailn being chosen as McCain’s VP makes it more likely for them to vote for the McCain campaign.  As we were talking about in class to day, Obama needs to turn out white voters, Hilary’s supporters to be white, female, and this poll shows that they are wither not leaning towards Obama, or leaning towards McCain.  Why is it that these Hillary voters are still not fully backing Obama, and still seem to favor him as a candidate as whole then the entire Democratic Party does? The article says, “They (Hilary supporters) trust Obama more than McCain on important issues, though not by as much as Democrats overall do. They prefer Obama over McCain on the economy by 30 percentage points, compared to Obama’s 50-point edge among all Democrats. They like Obama on Iraq by 17 points, while all Democrats give Obama a 40-point margin. The starkest contrast comes from comparing Clinton backers still refusing to support Obama with other Democrats. Just three in 10 Clinton supporters still not backing Obama view him favorably, compared to eight in 10 of all Democrats. While most Democrats and former Clinton supporters strongly prefer Obama over McCain to handle key issues, those Clinton voters still opposing Obama opt for McCain: On the economy by 32 points, and on Iraq by 47 points.”  Are the large percentage points going to hurt the Obama campaign enough, to where no matter what electorate he creates he will still lose?  The fact of the matter is that Obama needed more than just Hilary’s support, he needed her on the ticket; her not being on the ticket is hurting him now, it will hurt him later, and most likely hurt him come November. 

I think this also ties into the poll that I posted about race, there is an unfortunate, underlying fear of race and change still to this day, I feel as if it has something to do with Clinton supporters not immediately backing Obama, it OBVIOUSLY had something to do with the McCain HANG add, and its going to hurt Obama. Representing change helped Barrack get the nomination, but it seems as if it’s going to keep him from getting the presidency.  I think that accurately represents the mood of the country, they are ready for semi-change (that being the nomination) but not ready for complete change (that being the presidency.) I realize that one of the main reasons Obama got the nomination was because of young voters turning out in large numbers, but he is obviously going to need more than that.  Although I believe that a new electorate has been created within the young voters, the Latino voters, and even more of an African-American turn-out, is it going to be enough to elect a Black candidate?   

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6 Comments

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6 responses to “MORE trouble for Obama! By: Keith Valentine

  1. Tony Robinson

    Representing change helped Obama win the nomination, but may deny him the presidency–very well put Keith. That’s exactly his trouble right now. You are right that the emerging preferences of white voters is troubling and must lead us to question the issue of race head on. I believe Obama only wins by calling a new electorate into being–one substantially more diverse than in previous years. If Blacks, Latinos and youth do not shatter previous voting rate records, Obama will lose. He will not be able to win with a traditional Clinton coalition of moderate white suburban Dems, even though they are fed up with the Bush years. Too many of them will not bring themselves to vote for the exotic, not-white Obama–call it the Bradley effect or call it racism. It’s real still today, and your numbers show it.

    To improve the graphics of the post, you can try to add a bit more spacing between your lines and set off quotes using the quote tool when you edit/create your post. That makes it easier for readers to get through.

  2. balaban13

    Keith, I think you bring up some good points, but I believe there is one important reason that you forgot to include in your blog: most of the Democratic primaries were open, meaning that Republicans and Independents could vote in those. This could explain why Obama is not getting the support of the remaining 42% of the primary voters who cast their ballots for Hillary Clinton.

    In fact, Rush Limbaugh, on his famous radio show in February 2008, “announced “Operation Chaos,” a political call to action with the initial plan to have voters of the Republican Party temporarily cross over to vote in the Democratic primary and vote for Hillary Clinton, who at the time was in the midst of losing eleven straight primary contests to Barack Obama…At the point in which Limbaugh announced his gambit, Obama had seemed on the verge of clinching the Democratic nomination. However, Clinton subsequently won the Ohio primary and the Texas primary (while losing the Texas caucus and the overall delegate split) with large pluralities from rural counties; thus reemerging as a competitive opponent in the race. Statistics released by the state of Texas show Hillary Clinton won the primary due to a large number of Republicans crossing over to vote for her. Whether these voters were Operation Chaos Operatives or simply Republicans who preferred Clinton is impossible to tell” (Wikipedia, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Rush_Limbaugh_Show#Operation_Chaos)

    There is no doubt that Barack Obama is having a tough time connecting with some rural, white and older voters in states like Ohio, Pennsylvania, Michigan. However, I highly doubt that this percentage would be more than %10, if Democratic primaries were open only to registered Democrats. To prove this point, all we need to do is to look at the break down of latest polls that show percentage of Democrats who are voting for McCain. You will rarily see that number being more than 10 points. Check out page 3 in this CBS News Poll and you will see the support for each candidate broken down by party support.

  3. Diego Del Campo

    I think it’s cheap and disappointing of Obama supporters to still continue to peddle around the idea that Hillary won primary contests because Rush Limbaugh listeners turned out en masse to vote for her. Ever since John Kerry made that same vacuous comment, I’ve thought the Democratic establishment will really get what they deserve if Obama loses. This kind of warped logic is insulting to Democrats like me and only helps to strengthen the deep-seated divisions and fissures this primary created.
    The bottom line: Republicans who hate the Dems, are not the type of Republicans who will turn out to vote in masses for Hillary Clinton. If you think Obama lost Texas, lost Ohio, lost Rhode Island, lost Pennsylvania, lost Indiana, lost West Virginia, lost Kentucky, lost Puerto Rico, lost South Dakota was because of Rush Limbaugh, I think DailyKos and Olbermann are clouding your judgment.
    Also, its beyond erroneous to say that “most” primaries were open. In fact, only about half of the contests were open, and the rest were closed.
    California was a closed primary–and Hillary won by 10 points. Pennsylvania was closed primary–and the Obama camp had ample time to conduct a voter registration drive, tour the entire state with Bob Casey, and outspend Hillary 3-1 with ads–and Hillary still won by 10 points.
    I agree with Keith, if Obama really wanted to win this election, he only needed to do one thing. Biden, for me, wasn’t a pick that swayed me either way. Biden is prone to say dumb things: just yesterday he said to some voters that FDR was president and got on TV when the stock market crashed in 1929!

  4. Tony Robinson

    I have to agree with Diego–Operation Chaos had a marginal to no influence on the Democratic primaries. Hillary’s voters were real Democrats, all right, not fake Repubs drummed up by a desire to destroy the Dems.

    I agree that Obama would probably be winning in a cakewalk right now if had picked Hillary and thus forced McCain into a more mundane pick like Romney. I was one of those speaking up for a non-Hillary pick a few months ago–but hindsight shows that I and others were wrong, in terms of political strategy anyway. You’d think the team of seasonsed Obama advisors would have made a better Veep choice, even if foolish professors couldn’t see clearly at the time.

  5. Stephen Noriega

    According to TIME Magazine, the Palin effect is perhaps wearing off and Obama is beginning to get more woman support in the polls – (http://www.time.com/time/politics/article/0,8599,1846065,00.html?imw=Y). I believe that most white Democrat women will not vote for McCain/Palin once they truly think about the range of issues that vote affects. My biggest concerns have to do with whites in general and their ability to evolve out of their own bigotry and vote for Obama.

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