May 13, 2008
That 39% point beating Hillary Clinton laid on Barack Obama today looks even worse when you realize another 7% of Democratic voters cast a ballot for uber-populist and hair cut client to the stars, John Edwards. So, in what amounted to a giant crosstab of white, working class voters, less than three out of ten voted for the near-coroneted Democratic nominee. Her margin of victory is 50% greater than his total vote count. Brutal.
A couple additional red flags for Democrats in the exit poll, besides the depth and breadth of Clinton's win:
1) Voters were asked who they would vote for in November. Their response:
Obama - 53%, McCain - 27%, and Would not vote - 17%.
Yes, such numbers are usually overstated in during a bruising primary season. But, only 53% of Democratic primary voters committing to the probable Democratic nominee is a shocking low number, and symbolic of the demographic gap Obama has to close in the coming months.
2) Voters were asked if they considered Obama to be "honest and trustworthy": 51% said "no.".
That's a huge jump into the negative from Indiana, where 67% of Democratic voters said "yes," just as did the same number in Pennsylvania.
It's simply another measure that Obama has a fundamental problem selling himself to folks in small towns and rural environs. Furthermore, it signifies that the post-partisan purveyor of new politics isn't actually viewed as credible in a key slice of the electorate.
Moreover, keep in mind, these are just voters in a Democratic primary. How will Obama fare among this same demographic amongst the larger universe of general election voters? That's not very promising.
In response, Obama-backers keep saying that Democrats don't have to win the white, working class vote to win elections. True. They do, however, have to keep it competitive. Letting Republicans run up the score outside of urban counties kept Ohio in the red in 2004, and could keep states across the Midwest in play in what otherwise looks like a tough year for Republicans.
It's not as if Democrats haven't been warned.
Posted by Eric Earling at May 13, 2008
09:05 PM | Email This
you seem to be desperate to gin up some negative news on dems and largely silent about mccain.
this post, using west virginia's sub-200,000 voters as somehow representative of the larger democratic party is a classic case of selective sampling.
if you want to be alarmed about something, look at the miss 01 district special election, where childers wins over a republican in a district that voted 60+% for bush in 2006.
while some dems may not be enthusiastic about obama, far more seem to be. but what appears clear is that very few voters seem to be enthusiastic about republicans at all.
Yep, Travis Childers sure scored a GOFAK against Greg Davis in Mississippi CD1 -- 8 point Democratic victory in a district that Bush carried by nearly 25 points in 2004.
Maybe Republicans can't see the Forrest for the trees?
As as I have said before, it is always precisely when interesting precursors for Democrat doom reveal themselves, that dinesh shows up with a knee-jerk defense.
What dinesh misses, is exactly Eric's point. Cross-tabs. It doesn't matter that the sample size is small, when WV represents exactly the demographic that Obama needs in the general and has already lost. And not just lost, but irrevocably lost.
And I'll even grant that voters are very upset with Republicans. I am too. But voters are far more upset with Democrats. Check the Congressional approval ratings lately?
In the long run Democrats will always lose, because they make giant promises that they can never possibly deliver on. And not just giant promises, but giant specific promises, and giant vague platitudes. For example, Democrats tell us that they will lower the cost of oil by putting a gun to the heads of the oil companies. If only it were that easy. And simultaneously, Democrats tell us "We are the change that we seek?" Great? Now how does that create a solid energy policy?
McCain is bad for this country. But even still, he's going to beat Obama squarely in November. Because despite serious warning tremblers like WV, Democrats won't allow themselves to see the "big one" until it is too late.
The problem with polls in general is they tend to be a how do you feel at this moment type of thing. What these voters say today, the day they voted in the primary, may not be how they feel in November.
I think it is too early to say one way or another how this election will go. Between now and November any number of things could happen that could directly influence the voters and it does not have to be something from the candidates past or present. It could be some world event that changes the dimessions of the race in general.
This race is McCain's to lose. It looks like he's doing everything possible to make that happen.
I guess no one got the memo that conservatives abandoned the GOP in 2006 for NOT being conservatives.
You assume WV as a swing state for Democrats. It maybe for Hillary, but not in general. For a more accurate snapshot of the election today, you may want to go to the site that seems to be the best at predicting.
If you go to the one entry regarding WV, it was a given that WV was not Obama country. In a McCain-Obama race, WV is solid red. In a Hillary-McCain race, it is a swing state. Likewise, in a McCain-Obama race, Colorado is in play for Obama. Whereas, in a Hillary-Obama race, Colorado isn't in play.
None of this also takes into account Obama's national voter registration drive. FiveThirtyEight blog in conjunction with Progress Illinios used FiveThirtyEight's sophisticated model and data to project what would happen under different scenarios of increased black, hispanic, and young voter turnout. Here is the blog entry on it. Voter registration and turnout is one of the keys to how Obama has taken this coronation away from Hillary. It is his plan for winning in the fall (e.g., change electoral map). It also has consequences for Republicans when it comes to House and Senate races. All this is not new, it is matter-of-fact on much of Rove's plan to get Bush relected in 2004 (i.e., targeted voter turnout in key regions).
Is there any proof that the young turn out in droves for the general election?
I seem to remember that this has been something that the has been tried for years with little to no real sucess. I am not saying it is impossible, but recent history has show it is not likely.
McCain will beat Obama badly in November, at the end of the day, a large chunk of Hillary's voters are going McCain - even though conservatives like me will likely remain unhappy with McCain and vote some weird third party candidate. McCain can thank God the D's are so stupid and nominating a fatally flawed candidate. The D's still have not figured out that you cannot get an anti-american elected in america.
On the other hand, if you are a conservative, buck up -- conservatives continue to get elected however we better get use to some of them having the D label instead of the R label. The R folks who run the party, folks like the guys who run this website are going to get clobbered. There are millions of us out here who were raised on conservative principles - trust me our votes will be heard somehow through all the muddled up mess of only have two choices, right now D's in the south are listening and getting our votes.
John Mc Donald,
You are correct. There are many people of all types that are looking for principled positions on issues. Too bad so many here are focused on propoganda.
All of you 'experts' notwithstanding...bottom-line is very simple: Democrats WIN this time around [candidate matters not] - PERIOD!
End of discussion! Now feel free to macro-analyze to your heart's content...I realize your ego's likely need it and it's good training. :)
Hillary ain't done yet! :)
You say West Virginia is not a swing state in the general; once again you're jumping to conclusions without evidence.
No Democrat has won the White House without winning West Virginia since 2006 1916. It was a close battleground state as recently as 2000. And now, the very website you pointed me to shows Clinton competitive with McCain in November. Obama, not so much.
The point of the post is the West Virginia remains a highly representative sample of a demographic in which Democrats cannot afford to get creamed. Not even mentioning the fact that McCain has just as much electoral map game-changing ability as Obama.
Will newly registered young people turn out this year?? Absolutely. Two big issues loom large on their radar and they haven't yet developed the deep cynicism that makes voters apathetic.
The war in Iraq is first and foremost. Many have friends and relatives in the service and they can see and hear that things are not going well. (and please, spare us your personal observations as your credibility is less than zero)
The economy is in dire straights. Gasoline is suddenly very expensive and they see that every time they fill up.
So yeah, young and old will turn out in droves this fall, and vote for a change.
I believe you made a mistake in your statement of No Democrate has won the White House without winning WV since 2006. Did you mean 1976?
The facts are only two democrats, both Southerners, have won the White House in the last 40 years. So the question would be whether WV is a bellweather or not. True bellweather states, like Missouri, or possibly Wisconsin, have a history that goes back 50-60 years.
My point is that Obama can exclude WV, if he adds a new state, like Colorado to the mix. WV isn't that big. Now, Ohio and Pennsylvannia are different stories and he will have to not exclude them in his plans. This is possibly where VP choice may come into play. Although looking at the maps at the 538 site, Richardson may look to have a decent chance if he can strengthen NM and Colorado numbers.
Yes, in the past young voters haven't turned out, and they probably won't this year, in general, except for Obama. Obama has demonstrated throughout the primaries that young voters is a solid core constituent that has turned out. If you look at the fact that PA and WV are some of the oldest average age states, you begin to see what happens when Obama doesn't have the young vote potential. Other ancillary evidence is look at the number of super delegates who have gone to Obama with a major factor being their kids convincing them to get on board. The young generation has not been this excited about a candidate since Robert Kennedy.
15. Either Democrat candidate is easily beatable in November, if, and I repeat, IF, Republicans had presented a viable candidate. With McCain on the ballot, not so sure. Conservatives (myself included) don't trust McCain's positions on numerous litmus issues, such as: gun ownership, abortion, illegal immigration, environmental policy, energy development and campaign finance. I consider McCain a contrary and self-absorbed nut. That leaves only one question ...is he still a better choice than the anti-American communist Obama?
16. Now this
is pretty good for VP list for Obama. McCain should follow suit. Maybe then the MSM might get a life for the next month or two.
Excuse me, thinking faster than I type, no Democrat has won the White House without winning the state since 1916...a fact mentioned by Clinton this past week (I've now correct that comment).
And the point isn't even West Virginia itself, it's the demographic group that dominates the Mountain State which is also a key demographic group in battlegrounds across the Midwest such as Ohio, Michigan, Wisconsin, etc....and as you note, PA.
tc @ 16:
Hilarious. Obama might even laugh, but I'm not too sure? Come to think of it, I'm not sure about anything regarding Obama....as of now, he's just the new "hope and change" man the msm has propped up in front of us.
As for McCain, I don't think he'd laugh about much of anything. Doesn't appear to be a very funny guy.
19. Yeah, you know 'Saltherring' you're right...discounting everything else; McCain doesn't seem like the type of guy you'd want to sit down and have a beer with and chat. Now...'enter a boxing ring with' might be more appropriate. :)
20. Yeah, Duff, the one certainty when you sit down for a beer with McCain is that someone's gonna get up swinging.... ;~)
I did see another reader entry this morning regarding the 1916 date. In that case, your point was correct with regards to the past and WV. I also saw a entry regarding the fact that WV is no longer has the political clout it once had. WV used to have six congressman (8 Electroral Votes). It is the slowest growing state in the nation. It is down to three congressman and is expected to drop farther in the upcoming census in the few years. Currently, with 5 Electoral votes, I would state that it isn't as important as Colorado.
With regards to White Male, non-college educated vote, I am not sure Democrats in general get this demographic, other than possibly Bill Clinton. Many may have voted for Hillary because she's married to Bill, but seven percent of WV voted for John Edwards who is no longer running. My guess is that demographic was very strongly the white male, non-college educated voter you are talking about.
One other demographic change, however, is the rise of the Hispanic vote. In this election it will become a more important voting block than the one you speak of, depending on turnout. This is where McCain does have some historic strengths. My guess is this voting block will be more a battleground than the white male, non-college educated voter.
TC @ 14.
Perhaps they will turn out for Obama. I guess we will know for certain in Novemeber.
The R's could not beat Hillary, they absolutely can beat Obama. Obama is strong in R dominated states where he has no chance of winning, strong in Liberal states, where he has no chance of losing. McCain and Hillary were both strong in swing states. Get ready for 4 more years of R rule in the White House.
Actually, I think liberal R's will take a beating, conservatives will do okay. Remember, liberals have been aborting their kids for more than 35 years now ... so conservative voters every election cycle grow by about 0.6 million over liberals.
As I said to TC we will see in November and you both may be right that Obama does in fact vring out the young vote.
I do not know why you feel that you need to discredit me by claiming that I have zero credibility. You can not provide one shred of evidence that I am in Iraq, yet I can tell you that some posters here know that I am in fact here in Iraq. You have accused me of not being a vet before and cannot prove it. So you have accused me of a Federal Crime (ask you buddy Jesse Macbeth about what happens when you falsely claim you served over in Iraq when you did not). So either provide some proof of your claim or drop it. I know you will just come back with, "you have not shown any proof you are what you say you are, but any proof I would give you, you would just claim that I can't prove it is mine"
It is one thing to diasgree with me and to debate me, it is truly another thing to smear and slander my character.
matt yglesias takes your "no democrat has won the white house without wv since 1916" one step further.
"What's even more interesting is that no Democrat has won the White House without carrying Minnesota since 1912 (it went for Teddy Roosevelt's Bull Moose party) so given that Obama won Minnesota and Clinton won West Virginia, McCain is guaranteed to win the general election unless the eventual nominee can somehow completely replicate the social and political conditions prevailing in pre-WWI America."
so all of you mccain supporters can take a deep breath, pop open the champagne and cruise until november.
the dems are screwed. so much money, so many new voter registrations, the worst president ever, the largest federal govt ever, the largest deficit ever, recession, "mission accomplished", where's osama?, $4.50 gas,
and west virginia and minnesota split between 2 dems.
screwed, i tell you.
26. Is there any proof that the young turn out in droves for the general election?
Sure there is. Just ask President Dean.
27. "She's a fighter, tireless worker and epitomizes the word 'tenacity' this should be our candidate and next POTUS
Posted by Duffman at May 14, 2008 06:16 AM
I agree duffman.
Condi Rice would make an excellent Madam President...
28. "no democrat has won the white house without wv since 1916"
No Senator has won the White House since Richard Nixon, no Senator has won the White House without first being the VP since Kennedy, prior to that it was Warren G. Harding in 1921. This year we have 2 Senators who will be facing off against each other, neither was a VP.
In other useless statistics, no individual has won the White House using public financing against an opponent who does not take public financing. No party has held control of the White House if their party predecessor's approval numbers were lower than 40%. No Presidential ticket with a woman on it has ever won the White House. No African American candidate has ever become the nominee of a major party. No individual over the age of 70 has ever won a first term in the White House.
Presidential race statistics are fun and meaningless all at the same time. =)
Rick D. @ 27:
Now there's a Republican I could vote for. McCain could do no better than to put Condi Rice on his ticket. Now, if only that ticket were reversed, with Condi as president.....
30. @ 29 ~ Yup Saltherring, she's infinitely more qualified than the bunch we've got running this election cycle... =)
"knee jerk defense"? most of the regular commenters here at sp presented little else other than shills for bush in 2004 and the fubar situation that is iraq. i won't bother going to all of the archives on this website, but the 'rah rah' nature of the trainwreck that was 2001-200? in the federal govt at the hands of the republicans (and abetted by the lame dems)was pathetic.
you would think that republicans would be far more skeptical of leaders--but instead we got the cheerleading squad.
so pull out your pom poms and short skirts for mccain--that's the best the republicans could do since bush, jr? obama is far from perfect, but he is a sharp contrast to clinton in the sense that he provides people with a way to be forward-thinking about the country. bush, clinton, mccain--these are individuals closely associated with our country's past--without any meaningful association with our future.
32. "obama is far from perfect, but he is a sharp contrast to clinton in the sense that he provides people with a way to be forward-thinking about the country.
Posted by dinesh at May 14, 2008 10:58 AM
...and who's got the pom poms and short,shorts on?
Now, if you can just define that very vague term of "forward-thinking" with some specificities you might make a better argument. Until then, you're just showing you've passed Obamaspeak 101. i.e. No concrete solutions put forth , just peripheral fuzzy-math, feel good semantics.
33. "forward-thinking" is a liberal euphemism for socialism, environmental extremism, gun confiscation, increased taxation and homosexual marriage.
34. Oh, and I forgot to include unilateral disarmament.
Voters are unhappy with both parties. For the past 5 years or so I have realized that I am a Republican only because they are not the Democrats.
I expect that Obama will probably--but not certainly-- end up winning. They will certainly expand their leads in Congress.
One of the reasons Bush has been so unpopular especially when compared to Clinton is that that his presidency came in a much more difficult time-- after 9-11/oil shocks, etc while Clinton's came in the great times after the end of the Cold War.
I think Rossi may be different though--he may be a rare bright spot for the GOP. Washington has often bucked presidential landslides and elected a governor of the party losing the state on the presidential level.
We'll see. But one thing's for sure we need new leadership in Congress.
besquared @ 35:
John Spellman was a Republican, or at least *'what passes for a Republican' in this state.
*With apologies to Dino Rossi, a true Republican.
tc said "With regards to White Male, non-college educated vote, I am not sure Democrats in general get this demographic".
When I looked at this breakout in the past, Dems got the non-college educated and the advanced college degree (i.e. PhD) demographic, while the Reps got the "some college" and the college degree (BS degree) demographic. I think there is more of a split of the MS degree demographic.
This split for the Dems actually fits in nicely with the WSJ description of the "liberal plantation". Their party contains both the "masters" (i.e. the "elite" with their PhD's) and the "slaves" (i.e. the non-college educated who rely on their government programs).