February 24, 2008


Obama's Red-State Prospects Unclear: Democrat's Support May Have Limits (Alec MacGillis, 2/24/08, Washington Post)

[T]he picture emerging of his appeal in GOP strongholds and in swing states, even as he widens his delegate lead over Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (N.Y.), is more complex than his claim to broad popularity in "red state" America would have one believe.

Obama (Ill.) posted big wins over Clinton in caucuses in Plains and Mountain states such as Kansas, Nebraska and Idaho, but Republicans in those states scoff at the suggestion that victories in the small universe of Democrats there translate into strength in November. In Tennessee and Oklahoma, Obama lost by wide margins to Clinton, who lived in nearby Arkansas. He narrowly won the primary in the swing state of Missouri, but did so thanks to the state's solidly Democratic cities, losing its more rural, and more conservative, areas to Clinton.

"If he's the nominee . . . he'll start off with a good urban base, but he'll have to get out and develop these other areas," said former Tennessee governor Ned McWherter, a Democrat and Clinton supporter.

How's that unclear? It's an urban party and he'd be strong in urban areas, because of his identity politics. If that won national elections the only Democrats to be elected wouldn't be white Southern governors.

Posted by Orrin Judd at February 24, 2008 6:34 AM
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