May 26, 2008


Divided They Stand: Any lingering bitterness among Hillary Clinton’s supporters about her treatment during the primaries could cost Barack Obama the White House. (Paul Krugman, 5/26/08, NY Times)

[E]lections always involve emotions as well as issues, and there are some ominous signs in the polling data.

In Florida, in particular, the rolling estimate produced by the professionals at shows Mr. McCain running substantially ahead of Mr. Obama, even as he runs significantly behind Mrs. Clinton. Ohio also looks problematic, and Pennsylvania looks closer than it should. It’s true that head-to-head polls five months before the general election have a poor track record. But they certainly give reason to worry.

The point is that Mr. Obama may need those disgruntled Clinton supporters, lest he manage to lose in what ought to be a banner Democratic year.

So what should Mr. Obama and his supporters do?

Most immediately, they should realize that the continuing demonization of Mrs. Clinton serves nobody except Mr. McCain. One more trumped-up scandal won’t persuade the millions of voters who stuck with Mrs. Clinton despite incessant attacks on her character that she really was evil all along. But it might incline a few more of them to stay home in November.

Nor should Obama supporters dismiss Mrs. Clinton’s strength as a purely Appalachian phenomenon, with the implication that Clinton voters are just a bunch of hicks.

Which would be fine, except that it's a core belief of liberals, like Mr. Krugman, that the reason people don't vote Democratic is because they're hicks who've been tricked. All that's changed this time around is that the Bright/Stupid divide is visible within the Party. Barack Obama and the Unmaking of the Democratic Party (Sean Wilentz, May 23, 2008, Huffington Post)
With her overwhelming victory in Kentucky on May 20, Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton has completed her sweep of the crucial primary states adjoining the Ohio River -- and the fight for the Democratic nomination has entered its final phases. Having picked up a net gain of nearly 140,000 votes between Kentucky and Oregon, Clinton is now well poised to win the Puerto Rico primary on June 1 - and clinch a majority in this year's popular vote, even if the disputed returns from Michigan are discounted. Under those pressures, the Barack Obama campaign and its sympathizers have begun to articulate much more clearly what they mean by their vague slogan of "change" - nothing less than usurping the historic Democratic Party, dating back to the age of Andrew Jackson, by rejecting its historic electoral core: white workers and rural dwellers in the Middle Atlantic and border states.

Without a majority of those voters, the Democrats have, since the party's inception in the 1820s, been incapable of winning the presidency. The Obama advocates declare, though, that we have entered an entirely new political era. It is not only possible but also desirable, they say, for Democrats to win by turning away from those whom "progressive" pundits and bloggers disdain variously as "Nascar man," "uneducated," "low information" whites, "rubes, fools, and hate-mongers" who live in the nation's "s***holes."

It's one thing when your peers want to know what's the matter with Kansas, another when they ask "what's the matter with you?"

Posted by Orrin Judd at May 26, 2008 8:15 AM

Just wait until the professional Left starts calling the "McCain Democrats" traitors. That's next.

And what are the Obama people going to say if Hillary does win a 'majority' of the popular vote? "Well, we all know that a majority of the Democratic coalition is nothing but mind-numbed sheep, who will vote for whoever the nominee is, because life in America is so awful."


But, stranger things have been said this year.

Posted by: ratbert at May 26, 2008 8:47 AM

Obama's voting record in Haiku

Posted by: h-man at May 26, 2008 12:21 PM

Let us assume that the folk-enemies and culture-traitors who are all out for Effendi Obama are going to get their dupas handed to them, very much the way we did in 1964.

Then we shall see the difference between a political movement and an outdoor insane asylum. Will they pick themselves up, dust themselvevs off and work on getting their message across so as to do better next time?

Or, and this is what folk-enemies and culture traitors do and what they are, will they blame the rest of us for their debacle, saying that what's the matter with Kansas is the mattter with the whole of their country?

Posted by: Lou Gots at May 26, 2008 8:22 PM


If Obama loses big, MSNBC is going to be very entertaining that night.

Of course they will blame America, because except for the Upper West Side, Hyde Park, Beacon Hill and Cambridge, Hyde Park, and San Francisco, the rest of the country will be indistinguishable from West Virginia, Texas, or Colombia (for that matter).

Posted by: ratbert at May 26, 2008 11:21 PM

Hillary Clinton? I don't know anyone who voted for her!

Posted by: Mike L at May 27, 2008 6:36 PM