Electability mentality

"The white working class has gone to the Republican nominee for many elections, going back even to the Clinton years. This is not new that Democratic candidates don't rely solely on those votes."

That's David Axelrod on NPR this morning, explaining why Obama lost Pennsylvania; and implying that Obama would not do much better in the GE with white lower-income workers.

And Axelrod might as well include that this happens to coincide with the fact that only 1 Democratic Presidential candidate has gotten a fraction above 50 percent in the GE since 1964, that's 44 years ago.

Do you think the two are connected?

This leads into the discussion over on TNR, John Judis asks whether Obama is The Next McGovern and Jonathan Chait, Contra Judis, says no. I've noticed exactly what Judis is talking about here. Obama still has the young and African-American voter coalition going on, but his base beyond that seems to have shifted over the course of the primary.

Judis:

...if you look at Obama's vote in Pennsylvania, you begin to see the outlines of the old George McGovern coalition that haunted the Democrats during the '70s and '80s, led by college students and minorities. In Pennsylvania, Obama did best in college towns (60 to 40 percent in Penn State's Centre County) and in heavily black areas like Philadelphia.

Its ideology is very liberal. Whereas in the first primaries and caucuses, Obama benefited from being seen as middle-of-the-road or even conservative, he is now receiving his strongest support from voters who see themselves as "very liberal." In Pennsylvania, he defeated Clinton among "very liberal" voters by 55 to 45 percent, but lost "somewhat conservative" voters by 53 to 47 percent and moderates by 60 to 40 percent. In Wisconsin and Virginia, by contrast, he had done best against Clinton among voters who saw themselves as moderate or somewhat conservative.

Obama even seems to be acquiring the religious profile of the old McGovern coalition. In the early primaries and caucuses, Obama did very well among the observant. In Maryland, he defeated Clinton among those who attended religious services weekly by 61 to 31 percent. By contrast, in Pennsylvania, he lost to Clinton among these voters by 58 to 42 percent and did best among voters who never attend religious services, winning them by 56 to 44 percent. There is nothing wrong with winning over voters who are very liberal and who never attend religious services; but if they begin to become Obama's most fervent base of support, he will have trouble (to say the least) in November.

Chait makes three counter points.

First, that going "from primary dynamics to general election dynamics" is problematic. That's true to a point, but also misses the appeal of Clinton over Obama and McCain over Obama, that's been shown of these voters in multiple recent polls. It's reflective of another shift that's happened. It used the be that Obama bragged about how Clinton wouldn't be able to win the voters that appealed to Obama. That's not the case any longer, with Obama having taken the McGovern coalition as his base.

Second, the point that Judis and Teixeira's book TEDM "argues that the elements of the McGovern coalition have expanded to the point where they can form the base of a political majority." True, but that's been obvious since 2000. That's the base, but it  skips past that its "not as a model of how to win presidential elections". This leads back to the first question, as to where, beyond the base, a candidate has appeal and can bring in votes.

Third, "compared to what?" asks Chait. Well, going by the national polls of registered voters, it is true that Obama does better than Clinton by .9 percent (can I call that 1%?) over McCain. So what, ask Al Gore. A look at the state polls reveals the trouble.

The Obama map shows big problems in Florida and Ohio, and most of the midwest region. In fact, if Obama doesn't have the states of Colorado, Nevada, and New Mexico to contend for (see Obama's previous positions on gun control for potential trouble), it becomes a very difficult map. Clinton's map is stronger, taking Florida and Ohio over McCain.

Obama had much more potential with the base that he came out of Iowa with, which included evangelical white voters. Its that element which he seems to have lost, probably due to Wright. It's been subtle, but his voting coalition has moved away from that group and toward the 'secular warrior' voters, while keeping the youth and African American base.

Tags: McGovern, obama (all tags)

Comments

252 Comments

Preach It!

Preach it, brotha.

by Zeitgeist9000 2008-04-23 02:04PM | 0 recs
Yeah, let's take this all the way

to the late August convention.

Damn the consequences! Damn the polls! Obama is clearly unelectable, and our only chance is HRC!

by TrueBlueCT 2008-04-23 03:44PM | 0 recs
Hillary Suffers From Rudi's Problem

The more people see of her, the less they like her. Her numbers drop and drop badly in many of these primaries.  

It's a long road to November.

by bernardpliers 2008-04-23 05:00PM | 0 recs
Re: Hillary Suffers From Rudi's Problem

wow. Obama is literally the overstuffed chair in your electoral politics. Everything revolves around her.. if she dictates this campaign to that degree, she should win. Also, Guiliani has one delegate she has over 1700. maybe democrats dont care about likable.

by hctb 2008-04-23 07:02PM | 0 recs
That certainly isn't true in PA ;-)

She, Bill, and Chelsea were all over PA and the people there loved her!!!!!

by macmcd 2008-04-23 07:56PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

I love it that we can all agree that what he said is true.

so its a bad thing.

its really sad when we are attacking a politician for telling the truth.

all he said was he is NOT going to solely rely on the white working vote, as that has been a stable for the GOP, even Clinton couldn't win that.

but ofcourse Obama said it so lets attack him for telling the truth.

by TruthMatters 2008-04-23 02:04PM | 0 recs
Sometimes, voters can't handle truth.

It's a sad thing to say, but, when it comes to campaigning that is the truth, too.

Doubt me?

Just ask Walter Mondale. Back in '84, he told the public--continuously--that he'd probably have to raise taxes. He said countless times: "I will not lie to the American public." This stood in stark contrast to Reagan's trickle-down (urination) theories as far as his campaign's economic theories were concerned. In retrospect, as hindsight is 20/20, Reagan was leading everyone off a cliff...but the majority didn't realize it until more than 2-1/2 decades later, when it became self-evident to the masses that it simply didn't work.

Left to their own devices, the rich and the corporate elites will stuff their own pockets at the end of the day, while the middle class eats crumbs.

Just history repeating itself.

I'm just sayin'...

So, if Obama wants to talk "truth," so be it.

by bobswern 2008-04-23 02:26PM | 0 recs
Re: Sometimes, voters can't handle truth.

I know but this is a democratic site!

we know what he means, for Democrats to spin it, its just sad.

by TruthMatters 2008-04-23 02:28PM | 0 recs
Re: Sometimes, voters can't handle truth.

Perhaps, the convention floor fight in 1984 kind of contributed to his loss, too...

What do you think?

by LordMike 2008-04-23 04:16PM | 0 recs
Re: Sometimes, voters can't handle truth.

you know there was a fight in 1976 as well between Kenndey and Carter that went all the way to the convention and Carter still won.  just saying.

david

by giusd 2008-04-23 04:19PM | 0 recs
Re: Sometimes, voters can't handle truth.

...and we lost...

The last time we went all the way to the convention and still won the presidency was 1960... yeah, the year of the first televised debate ever....

by LordMike 2008-04-23 04:36PM | 0 recs
Re: Sometimes, voters can't handle truth.

There is no "challenger".  Hillary is no incumbent.  It is an open seat.

by LordMike 2008-04-23 04:59PM | 0 recs
Re: Sometimes, voters can't handle truth.

and Obama is ahead by 154 pledged delegates not behind.  Analogy kind of falls apart then

by xenontab 2008-04-23 05:56PM | 0 recs
Re: Sometimes, voters can't handle truth.

Good catch i guess i mixed up those dates.

david

by giusd 2008-04-23 05:01PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Every times that Religion gets mixed up with politics we, the American people, seem to loose.

by temptxan 2008-04-23 02:07PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Don't you realize that religion and politics are incredibly intertwined in this nation? To unwrap one from the other would be to destroy the very foundation of this nation.

by Zeitgeist9000 2008-04-23 02:10PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Did I get troll rated? You know, I'm only telling the truth. The electorate is incredibly religious compared to the American public.

by Zeitgeist9000 2008-04-23 02:16PM | 0 recs
Weird isn't it? The premature

etrollarators are basically instantiating the "down side" of pure democracy, rule by mob.  And the reason our founders made this a representative democracy instead.

by miker2008 2008-04-23 02:26PM | 0 recs
Re: Weird isn't it? The premature

HA!

by Zeitgeist9000 2008-04-23 02:27PM | 0 recs
I got an e-mail from a religious alliance

that I belong to and was surprised (but also pleased) to see them raise the separation b/t church and state as it related to the CNN faith forum that the Dem candidates did recently.

It's true - since when should political candidates be put in the position to defend/state their faith?

by CoyoteCreek 2008-04-23 02:37PM | 0 recs
Yup, not supposed to work that way.

Except ... almost everyone in public life seems to buy into some form of the same argument:  For me to support a  candidate, s/he has to think like m,  and/or believe like me, and/or look like me, and/or share my values.  

You see it big time in the liberal blogs with all the hatin' on Hillary.  Obama's most fervent anti-Hillary bloggers seem to see her as  utterly alien, "other", monstrous.   Their revulsion is visceral.  

That draws from the exactly same well of emotion that we see in the religious right's reaction to abortion, or godless liberalism, or whatever ...

by miker2008 2008-04-23 03:00PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Odd that.  The founding fathers were almost to a man Episcopalians leaning Unitarian.  Jefferson assumed that the dominant religion in America would eventually be Unitarianism, as that made sense to an Age of Enlightenment intellectual.  We would inexorably progress to a sort of highly evolved, somewhat indifferent and nonspecific theism.  We have actually gone the other direction, which is, shall we say, unfortunate...

by jarhead5536 2008-04-23 02:16PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

You point out the one founding father who was a true scoundrel. Let's look at the others and the legacy they left instead of cherry-picking a very controversial figure who made sure that the only people named Jefferson nowadays are black people. There is religion in politics and politics in religion. They may not be concentric circles, but they definitely overlap. And that overlap is that part of the electorate who determines who the President will be. Period.

by Zeitgeist9000 2008-04-23 02:22PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

My use of Jefferson has made you miss my point entirely.  I mentioned him because he actually said the bit about Unitarianism.  The leading intellectuals of the time, both here and on the Continent, were quite sure we were heading towards a post-Christian era pretty quickly, and that didn't happen.  It may have seemed to them, as it most assuredly does to me, that democracy and the capital "C" Church are inherently incompatible...

by jarhead5536 2008-04-23 02:29PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

And when, in the history of our nation since its inception, has that ever proven true?

by Zeitgeist9000 2008-04-23 02:32PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Christianity, indeed all the Abrahamic faiths, are top-down heirarchical structures, concerned with the next world not this one, and fundamentally "other directed", that is, answerable to a higher power over any power on this Earth.  Democracy is firmly rooted in this world the equality, solidarity and intrinsic worth of every person, no matter what station they are born to.  The teachings of Jesus are based in these principles, but regrettably the Christian Church in America to great extent is more about Old Testament fear than New Testament love.

I am a quite devout high church Episcopalian, BTW, before you start hurling nasty atheist stuff at me.

by jarhead5536 2008-04-23 02:42PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

I'm not hurling, my friend.

The church should be about love, and I think we get it wrong a lot. We're human, after all.

But Christianity does teach a lot about the importance of civic duty, etc.

And we don't live in a democracy; we live in a republic. $4.00/gallon gas is indicative of that.

by Zeitgeist9000 2008-04-23 02:48PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

WTF? Seriously, Jefferson is the only scoundrel, this obviously can't be about slavery otherwise you would tie in Washington, so I'd like a little bit of fillign out on your point.

by Socraticsilence 2008-04-23 02:33PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

I don't agree with your comment 100%, but you didn't deserve a '0,' so I uprated you.  

by HSTruman 2008-04-23 02:23PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Thanks!

by Zeitgeist9000 2008-04-23 02:28PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

I don't agree with the sentiment, but there was nothing trollish about that comment.

by thatpurplestuff 2008-04-23 02:24PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Thanks!

by Zeitgeist9000 2008-04-23 02:28PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

you're off base here. you're talking hypotheticals. Something that can't be measured.

while politics and religion are intertwined in this nation, there's no reason that they can not be separated as they should be.

and stop with the doom and gloom scenarios already. I've had 7 years too much of this type of framing.

by alex100 2008-04-23 02:31PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Maybe I'm in the wrong place on the blog!

For an active Democrat who's also quite active in his church, perhaps I see things differently from those who believe that spirituality is an arbitrary construct.

No, I've thought about it, and I'm not going anywhere: the Party needs me too much.

by Zeitgeist9000 2008-04-23 02:36PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

i never asked you to go anywhere so it's odd that you respond in such a way.

but in any regards, seperation of church and state is written in the constitution. Live your church life to the fullest. I have no problem with that.

I do have a problem with people's God(s) influencing my countries laws however.

by alex100 2008-04-23 04:52PM | 0 recs
What was wrong with that comment?

Why was it troll rated?

by CoyoteCreek 2008-04-23 02:33PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Of course, Obama wins PA against McCain by exactly the same margin as Clinton in the most recent poll.  And he does a lot better against McCain than Clinton in lots of purple Dem-leaning states, like Iowa, Wisconsin, MN, etc.  But who cares about data like that, right?  Or that Clinton's negatives remain through the roof, and have gone up faster than Obama's as this process moves forward.  

Look, if you look at enough data you can prove just about anything.  Could Obama lose traditional "conservative democrats" to McCain?  Sure, it's possible.  Just like it's quite possible at this point that with Clinton as the nominee both the youth vote and afircan american voters will sit on their hands during the General.  I hope neither happens, since i want a Democrat elected more than anything, but both doomsday scenerios are possible.  Yet you never mention any of clinton's negatives/challenges in your posts.  I think that's odd for someone who professes to not really like either candidate all that much.    

by HSTruman 2008-04-23 02:09PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

what? when did he say he didn't like either candidate that much

sure I have only been here a month but its pretty obvious who he favors :-p

by TruthMatters 2008-04-23 02:11PM | 0 recs
I wonder if it's at all possible to imagine

Democrats that are most deeply concerned about WINNING not promoting the candidate they "favor".  It seems all attempts to rationally look at the contest in November have to now pass some "who do you favor" litmus test.  

Some interesting and significant concerns are being laid out in this diary.  If we are truly all interested in WINNING, we shouldn't give a wet rat's ass who the writer "favors".  

by grassrootsorganizer 2008-04-23 02:18PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Clinton's negatives are known; Obama's aren't. There are other polls which show Obama barely winning and in fact losing traditional true blue Democratic states like New York and Massachusetts, so we'd be winning Colorado and New Mexico at the sake of the Northeast, which is quickly becoming the Democratic version of the Republican Deep South.

by Zeitgeist9000 2008-04-23 02:13PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Ya'll keep saying her negatives are "known," because she's "vetted," but her negatives just keep rising.  It's almost...as if...those numbers aren't static after all...  Ha, who knew.

As far as your NE argument goes, that's silly.  The most recent poll I've seen in NY shows Hillary with worse favorables in the state than either Obama or McCain.  She runs stronger in Mass, but both beat McCain there as of right now.  In contrast, Obama actually runs stronger against McCain in California of all places, along with the other states I mentioned.  They both have their pluses and minuses, no doubt, but the idea that she is a better bet in a General simply isn't supported by existing empirical evidence.  

by HSTruman 2008-04-23 02:22PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Thank you for lifting me out of negativity land on the other post!

What about Ohio? And the Wright debacle is a ticking time bomb.

Hillary is unique among Presidential candidates in that people can hate her and vote for her at the same time. I'm being serious. It's like holding one's nose and eating chitterlings. Okay, bad analogy. Or maybe not.

by Zeitgeist9000 2008-04-23 02:26PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Clinton is stronger in Ohio than Obama, but the most recent Survey USA poll there shows Obama in a statistical tie with McCain.  

http://www.surveyusa.com/client/PollRepo rt.aspx?g=7a8dbaf0-c417-490d-b388-e38c6a eb00c5

That's hardly a dire position to start a GE campaign in, given his supposed "terrible weakness" in the state.  Remember, McCain has yet to take a single hit from the left.  His numbers, in my opinion, are currently at their apex.  

I would us a different analogy next time, if I were you, but you are welcome about the uprating.  The '0' was completely uncalled for.

by HSTruman 2008-04-23 02:33PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Ah come on, the old chitterling analogy always works.

I don't think we're looking for "statistical ties" at this point. We are looking for cushions beyond the margin of error. Besides we know what happens in Ohio and Florida when there's a statistical tie in the polling and then Election Day happens: the R wins. So you're saying that your empirical evidence bears out that Obama is just as competitive because he is statistically tied with McCain in the states we need to win like Ohio, New York, Florida and Massachusetts (and New Hampshire). In a Democratic year, statistical ties don't cut it.

by Zeitgeist9000 2008-04-23 02:42PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

No, my point is that he's statistically tied in states we need and so is she.  Last I checked,  Hillary's "strong" map doesn't work very well if she loses MN, Iowa, Wisconsin, and Michigan, and NH (ironically, Obama performs better in both those last states).  Also, he makes states competative that she doesn't, including Colorado -- where he continues to beat McCain -- Nevada, North Dakota, South Dakota.

Look, if the election was today both of our candidates are in a bit of trouble.  But it's not, and Mccain is at his peak right now.  Either of our candidates will win, in my opinion, so frankyl the electability argument doesn't have much force with me.  

by HSTruman 2008-04-23 02:51PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Look, if Obama is really at a statistical tie with McSame in  ever crucial Ohio, Florida and New Hampshire, then that is a plus. Namely, because we have already seen what happens when Obama starts campaigning in a state. Remember, FLoridans haven't  met him yet, and his ratings in Ohio can only go up since he has already campaigned there.
What you don't realize that if Obama has a good shot at winning states that Hillary 'supposedly has in the bag', then he is the better candidate because he can bring in CO and those other states out west that Hillary simply can't.

And if you REALLY think that Obama will lose New York, then you have no idea about Northeast politics. It's unlikely he will lose John Kerry's home state as well.

by xodus1914 2008-04-23 10:47PM | 0 recs
We should keep in mind that it's

possible to vote for someone you don't find particularly likeable.  In fact, that's probably a far more rational approach to voting than the current American-idol model that so many people assume is correct.

You want someone who will work for you, fight for you, even get nasty for you.   And you are never going to sit down for a beer with them so do you really care how likeable they are?  

The newly-labelled 'neanderthal' 'archie bunker" voters of rural Pennsylvania may actually understand this a lot better than the presumed intellectuals pushing the "Hillary is unlikeable" meme so hard in blogosphere and MSM.  You know?  Maybe the voters really don't care that much about how likeable she is?

Though me?  I'd way rather have a beer with Hillary than with Barack.   He'd be lecturing me on constitutional law and the evils of racism, while she'd be blowing beer out her nose laughing.  

by miker2008 2008-04-23 02:31PM | 0 recs
Re: We should keep in mind that it's

Yeah, racism is really, really "funny."

The comment I was making was about favorable/unfavorables, not "likeability."  Those are completely different metrics.  Not being particularly likeable isn't a huge deal, I agree.  Having very high unfavorable numbers is much more serious, because that takes into account your view of someone's performance.  

by HSTruman 2008-04-23 02:35PM | 0 recs
Oops, I didn't mean Hillary would

be sitting at the same table, laughing at Obama's lecture!  Sorry ... In my imagination these were two completely separate events, one with Obama lecturing and the other with Hillary snorting beer.

As for "unfavorables", ok I can agree with you that this includes more than just likeability in principle.  But I'd be curious what items are on your list of unfavorables for Hillary in addition to the likeability thing?

by miker2008 2008-04-23 02:49PM | 0 recs
Re: Oops, I didn't mean Hillary would

It's not my list, just to be clear.  I'll vote for her without compunction in the General if she wins the nomination.  But a significant majority of voters apparently think she is untrustworthy and calculating.  Those are not good numbers.  She also doesn't do as well as Obama with respect to the "shares my values" question, which plays into favorability ratings.  That's just off the top of my head.

by HSTruman 2008-04-23 02:56PM | 0 recs
Re: Oops, I didn't mean Hillary would

Dont you mean a significant majority of BO supporters and voters apparently think she is untrustworthy and calculating.

david

by giusd 2008-04-23 04:25PM | 0 recs
Re: Oops, I didn't mean Hillary would

Nope, but thanks for your inciteful comment.  According to a recent poll, only 39% of the public view Senator Clinton as trustworthy.  Here's the link.  Enjoy:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/con tent/article/2008/04/15/AR2008041502883. html?hpid=topnews

by HSTruman 2008-04-23 06:55PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Clinton's known negatives are above 50%.  Why are any more conversations even necessary???

by zadura 2008-04-23 03:27PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Psssst.  Here's a secret for you.  They will smear whoever the nominee is, and they don't care what's true or not.  So forgive me if I"m unoved by this "development."  If Hillary is the nominee, it will simply be a new smear about how she's a lesbian, who sold drugs out of the WH when she wasn't killing vince foster.  So what?  The only solution is to win anyway.  Obama can do that, as -- to be clear -- can Senator Clinton.  Depsite her own substantial baggage and sky high negatives.

by HSTruman 2008-04-23 06:59PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

So you think Hillary would win with same margin as Obama whereever he won? Do you think your logic makes any sense?

by indydem99 2008-04-24 07:01AM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

I don't even understand your comment.  

My point, which you seem to have missed, is that the doomsday scenerio that Jerome and others roll out about Obama is pretty silly when you actually look at the data.  In my view, BOTH of our candidates have very viable paths to winning a GE, albeit very different paths.  Yet, I see Clinton supporters cherry pick polls or -- worse yet -- extrapolate from primary results to "prove" that Senator Obama can't win.  Which is silly, given the kind of polling data I cited above regarding Pennsylvania.

Obama is stronger than Clinton in plenty of states.  She is stronger in others.  Both can beat McCain.  Is that simple enough for you?  

by HSTruman 2008-04-24 07:30AM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Yes he is stronger in some states but unfortunately most of them are red states.For example what good will it do to win NC,GA,AL,MS,LA,ND,SD,MT,WY,SC,KS. A Democratic presidential candidate is not going to win any of those states.  

by indydem99 2008-04-24 09:12AM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

The states I listed, at some point in this thread, include Iowa, Wisconsin, Washington, Oregon, NH, MN, and Colorado.  Those aren't red states, they're purple and either lean Dem or lean GOP.  Obama is stronger in all of them.  He's also even with McCain in ND and very  competative in SD, so writing those off seems foolish to me.  He's also stronger in Virginia, which may turn blue, although current polls are tough for both Dems.  

by HSTruman 2008-04-24 10:21AM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

IA+wi+wa+or+NH+MN+Co=58
FL+OH+PA=68
Truman, you may or may not agree with me but check this website.

http://www.electoral-vote.com/evp2008/Ob ama/Maps/Apr24.html

by indydem99 2008-04-24 03:00PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

The most recent polls show Obama beating McCain by the same margin as Clinton, so feel free to add its EV to his column as well.  

by HSTruman 2008-04-24 05:21PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

KS has 6 electrol votes and PA has 21 electrol votes Obama got more delegates winning KS than Hillary got winning PA.

Let us forget about this election(2008), I think Democrats have to reform their Primary system. It was never fully tested  before.

I think they need these reforms for future primaries:

  1. Eliminate caucuses.
  2. Make winner take all because that is how GE is.

by indydem99 2008-04-24 03:25PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

from www.electoral-vote.com

"A point that has come up repeatedly with Hillary Clinton's strong wins in blue-collar states is can Obama get downscale whites to vote for him in the general election? The NY Times has a story about polling on this issue in these states. The bottom line is that while many blue-collar workers prefer Clinton, they still prefer any Democrat to John McCain so the Democrats are not in grave danger of losing states like Pennsylvania that they must win in November. What Obama brings to the table is sudden competitiveness in states like Virginia, Iowa, Missouri, and Colorado, which Republicans normally win easily."

This seems to be a rational and unbiased analysis of the state polls at this point...But we have a long way til november.

by phemfrog 2008-04-24 09:10AM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Obama cannot win the working class white vote, but they don't want to hear it. Instead, their response is to call those people white trash rubes. This is probably not a good way to attempt to win them over.

They're so dug in they'd rather lose in November than open their eyes and look at the loss that looms in front of them.

And after they force this nomination on our party, and after Obama loses in a landslide, they will blame the Clintons.

by cc 2008-04-23 02:11PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

uh, the point they are making is NO democrat not even Bill Clinton won that vote.

thats his point, the white working vote, is not the ONLY thing a democrat relies on.

ya know what nevermind, everyone can read the word "solely" everyone knows what it means,

this is just another reason to attack Obama and try and paint him as elitist

DAMN YOU OBAMA, NEVER TELL THE TRUTH,

it seems we voters don't like it.

by TruthMatters 2008-04-23 02:12PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

1) Obama HAS won the white working class vote in several states, especially in the Upper Midwest and Upper Mountain West regions.

2) You don't know whether Obama can win those votes in the fall or not.  

3) Obama's campaign has NOT called anyone "white trash", I'd prefer it if you didn't imply such slander.

4) The only people "forcing" Obama upon our party are the people voting in our primaries.

by bawbie 2008-04-23 02:17PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Interesting.  By "several" do you mean ONE?

by Steve M 2008-04-23 02:34PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

That is just not true.

In the post linked there is a response from the Obama campaign with a whole list of states in which
Obama won voters under $50,000.

Plus, in most of the states in one of Obama's strongest geographic area (Mountain WEes

by bawbie 2008-04-23 05:07PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Ambinder has been good mainly this election, but that post is beyond stupid.

The Obama campaign responded with the states in which there were exit polls and Obama won voters <$50,000.  But ambinder says that they aren't "blue collar" because you can't have a college degree and be "blue collar".  He dismisses other because "edwards cut into Clinton's voting block" (IA and SC) and "Clinton didn't compete" (UT).  That is just weak.

Anyway, many of Obama strongest geographical states didn't have exit polls.

you can't tell me that blue collar voters in Idaho didn't vote for Obama, he won almost 80% of the vote there.

by bawbie 2008-04-23 05:22PM | 0 recs
Yes, well it's been reported that

Hillary gave Obama a hangnail last week.

by miker2008 2008-04-23 02:33PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Yes, let's all hope for complete self-destruction!

by SeanF 2008-04-23 02:12PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

There is SOOOOO much wrong with this post, but let me just start with #3.

If the Iowa caucuses were held today, I am sure Obama would get a larger (if not MUCH larger) percentage of the vote than he did.  See the delegates he gained at the county conventions after the Wright thing broke.

You just CAN NOT drag demographic attributions across geographical lines and draw conclusions from them.  This race has been more geographical than it has demographical.  

Obama is beloved and Hillary is despised in the Upper Midwest (IA, MN, WI), Great Plains (KS, NE, ND, SD) and Upper Mountain West (CO, MT, WY, ID).  According to people like you there are no women or blue-collar workers in this region.  Also, these voters KNOW who Obama is, Wright or guns aren't going to scare them away.  

Obviously he's not going to win all of the states, but the principle still stands.

The epitome of foolishness in this primary season is to take a demographic result in one region and try to prescribe it to another region.  

by bawbie 2008-04-23 02:15PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

The majority of regions you mentioned are complete red states.

IA, MN, WI sure... But quite frankly, the electoral votes you gain from picking Ohio/PA/Florida exceed those states.

Another problem is Obama's weakness in NJ and Ma - NJ is fairly marginal anyway, Ma: It's now failed governor Gov Patrick is a clone copy of Obama with very very low approval ratings.

by Jaz 2008-04-23 02:20PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

My point wasn't electability (although that part of this diary is stupid too), my point was that you can't say Obama won white working class voters in IA, but lost them in PA, and then conclude Wright was the cause.

It's a completely incorrect conclusion.

by bawbie 2008-04-23 02:25PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Well, that and you can't say Obama won working class voters in IA... because he didn't.

by joc 2008-04-23 03:17PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Actually he did.

Per the entrance polls on CNN Obama won or tied every economic demographic.

For voters < $50,000:
Obama 34, Clinton 32, Edwards 19

No matter how much Clinton supports would like it not to be true, the facts are the facts.

by bawbie 2008-04-23 05:15PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Well that's an interesting definition 'blue collar worker.' Perhaps you should look here to discover what a blue collar worker is.

How many of the college students Obama won were in that group? Has anyone explained to them they are now blue collar workers?

According to your definition an new assistant professor at a liberal arts college is a blue collar worker. As is an out of work actor. Or someone living on social security.

Facts are facts, just like definitions are definitions. You can't go changing them when they don't support your point of view.

by joc 2008-04-23 09:31PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Ambinder used "no college degree" as his "blue collar worker" criteria, but "all of those college students" you cite are in that group as well.

Exit polls don't have a question about "what color is your collar".

by bawbie 2008-04-24 06:32AM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Downrated for lying.

by kasjogren 2008-04-23 06:56PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Only you made a mistake as to who was lying. bawbie decided to create his/her own definition for blue collar workers and then applied it to this case as if it were fact. If that is the level of discourse you expect, then I redefine lying to mean the same as sleeping and demand that you change the rating you gave to me since sleeping is not a valid reason for giving a troll rating. If on the other hand you expect the truth from commenters you need to remove the troll rating and give it to bawbie instead.

by joc 2008-04-23 09:36PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

If Iowa were held today, Edwards would win going away.

by sinclair 2008-04-23 03:09PM | 0 recs
GEE WHILLIKERS....

heyyyy....Obama's and McGovern's logos are both round. ROUND!!!

Only losers have rounds logos....didn't Barack get the memo?

by edmandspath 2008-04-23 02:15PM | 0 recs
Comparing Obama and McGovern

What was Nixon's approval rating this time of the year in '72 to compare against Bush's?

by magster 2008-04-23 02:16PM | 0 recs
look at the pre-election ones

because they are the ones which really matter. Nixon was riding high around election time that year. Truman was bad in early 1948, but rose enough for the fall for him to win.

by DiamondJay 2008-04-23 03:25PM | 0 recs
Jerome's analytical skills are among...

...the best of any blogger on the planet. Clearly, this is his forte.

(In comparison, Markos is put to shame when it comes to this aspect of "the job." He has other skills; but, communicating objectively about analytics is not one his stronger suits.)

Today, especially, in multiple posts, Jerome's on top of his game. Obamaphiles and Hillary followers would ALL be better-served today by taking their hands away from their eyes and ears and opening up their minds.

by bobswern 2008-04-23 02:17PM | 0 recs
His &quot;circular logic&quot;, ahem,

is certainly impressive!

by edmandspath 2008-04-23 02:23PM | 0 recs
Re: Jerome's analytical skills are among...

I thought this was very subtle snark for a moment...

by Skaje 2008-04-23 02:32PM | 0 recs
Re: Jerome's analytical skills are among...

Then why did he rely on "cooked numbers" to claim that Hillary beats Obama in the popular vote. By this I mean he neglected to mention that the Fl and Mi numbers are tainted (disqualified by the DNC) and then completely leaves out caucus states votes. That should have been included there when the post was made. Leaving out relevant data that discredit his argument was wron. It was disturbingly dishonest and as a fan I was extremely disappointed.

by KosTexasliberal 2008-04-23 02:36PM | 0 recs
Re: Jerome's analytical skills are among...

Jerome uses the worst kind of demagoguery and self-serving logic. He's a charlotann. But the lies he tells make you feel good, so enjoy them for these two weeks. Think of it as a nice cruise before you get sent back to the salt mines.

by SeanF 2008-04-23 02:39PM | 0 recs
Are you one of two dozen Obama...

...supporters that has told me on these blogs for the last three weeks to "come talk with them on April 23rd?"

Well, it's April 23rd. Are you now saying I should "talk with you in a couple of weeks?"

How about, "Let's talk at the convention?"

by bobswern 2008-04-23 02:45PM | 0 recs
Re: Are you one of two dozen Obama...

No, I'm not. I never expected a PA win.

But if Obama doesn't pull of a two-fer May 6, you might be right about the convention!

It's pretty clear that HRC is resilient. That in my mind means Obama has to beat her where he isn't overwhelmingly favored in order to wrap it up. Indiana qualifies as that I think.

by SeanF 2008-04-23 02:56PM | 0 recs
Re: Jerome's analytical skills are among...

There's nothing objective about counting all the popular vote for FL & MI (Obama wasn't even on the ballot in MI), eliminating any estimate of popular vote in caucus states, and then declaring Hillary the popular vote winner.

It is the most intellectually dishonest thing I have ever seen a Democratic blogger write in the history of forever--and it's scary the ease of which Jerome writes such misleading dribble and the eagerness with which Hillary supporters lap it up.

Scary.

by Brannon 2008-04-23 03:28PM | 0 recs
I don't think it's scary

I think this is what the primary season dragging out has wrought on unity in the progressive blogosphere.

Neither side has been willing to give ground in a war of attrition.

If this goes on much longer, I think there are feelings that will be hurt irreparably in the short term, and that could have an impact in November.

I won't get into blame here, because it serves no useful purpose anymore. The people on this site and others have made up their minds (and based on the number of contests remaining, undecideds are in the minority anyway).

There needs to be some closure, and quick, because the usefulness of the primary season has run its course.

by bookish 2008-04-23 05:30PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Seriously, Jerome?

This is your argument now? Smearing Obama on the basis of having a logo similar to that of a failed candidate?

This makes approximately as much sense as arguing that Clinton is Geraldine Ferraro, since they also appealed to similar demographics. It's idiotic, especially when Obama keeps polling better than Clinton, despite being tag-teamed by Clinton, McCain, and the now the GOP establishment in some states.

Raising questions about the likely nominee is fine. Let's work out what electoral problems we might face and figure out how to cope with them. Contrasting Obama and Clinton is fine. Let's figure out what the pros and cons of each of our candidates is.

But this kind of childish, oversimplifying analogy is an insult to our intelligence, and amounts to a baseless attack on our likely nominee. If you're going to go after Obama, go after him on something substantive, not "CIRCLES=MCGOVERN!!!".

by jaiwithani 2008-04-23 02:17PM | 0 recs
I disagree

First off, I don't see where the story is based on logos or even mentions the similarity.  But as long as it's up there, imagine for a moment why the similarity exists.

Both logos are serious departures from the typical candidate logo -- bleached of the heavy handed patriotic symbolism  -- no stars, no waving stripes  -- even the red, white and blue we are used to is muted.  

Only speculation here, but I would guess both logos were designed to appeal to a certain base of support particularly averse to "patriotism" at the time, and to signal not only a sense of new direction (the  allusion to a sunrise over a broad horizon) but a total break with the status quo.  One might say both logos are "revolutionary" in their design.

Who would this logo be designed to appeal to?  In both cases people completely fed up with the government to the point of eschewing all things remotely patriotic.

That wouldn't include working class small town voters in Pennsylvania.  

by grassrootsorganizer 2008-04-23 02:32PM | 0 recs
Re: I disagree

Yeah. The red-white-blue "morning in America" image is totally left-wing.

by jaiwithani 2008-04-23 02:44PM | 0 recs
Re: I disagree

Furthermore...have you listened at all to this campaign?

What was the crowd chanting the night Obama won Iowa? "USA, USA!"

Who friggin' ended his book with the words, "My heart is filled with love for this country."

Who based his entire groundbreaking 2004 speech on what an amazing country this is?

The "Obama isn't a patriot" crap, in all it's forms, has got to stop. Attack him for his policies, or his political skills. But cut it out with this "change==HATES AMERICA" bullshit.

by jaiwithani 2008-04-23 02:49PM | 0 recs
Re: I disagree

I didn't say Obama hates America.  Chill the hell out.

What I said was, his logo was designed outside the usual box -- not designed to appeal to the typical FORM of flag waving patriotism.  Put another way, perhaps Obama is attempting to REDEFINE patriotism and it's not an easy redefinition to accomplish.

I'm not questioning the guy's love of country.  I'm suggesting he's trying to reframe it to appeal to the left.  

by grassrootsorganizer 2008-04-23 02:59PM | 0 recs
I guess I'm just kinda surprised

that so few people saw this coming.  To an old geezer like myself who was sentient in the George McGovern days (and backed him fervently), it's been obvious since the first debate.  We've got Mr. intellectual, let's sit back and think about this,  one-worlder, who is going to change the way Washington -- and indeed the world  -- does business now and forever.  Fueled by pure goodness.  

And I"m thinking ... doesn't anyone remember that no Democrat of that description has been elected in anyone's living memory?   We aren't living in the country you have to live in to have a leader like that.   Not sure anyone is, but I"m sure we aren't.  

And so you try to, like, maybe mention this on a couple of liberal blogs and you find yourself literally swept away by a tsunami of troll ratings.   To say I'm happy to be proven correct is an overstatement.   I knew I would be proven right, but I"m astonished that it happened so soon and with so little investigative journalism behind it.    Rev. Wright basically outed himself.

Sad, in a way, how little things have changed.   I know this will earn me scorn among a certain set, but the Clinton years were so much better than the McGovern-Nixon-Ford-Carter-Reagan years.   I really hoped, then, that we were finally entering a new century where the old divisions and stereotypes would fall away.   And they did, for a while.

But now they're back when a vengeance.   Strange days indeed.   Strange days indeed.

by miker2008 2008-04-23 02:18PM | 0 recs
Re: I guess I'm just kinda surprised

I sort of disagree.  Jimmy Carter was elected on the outsider, I-will-never-lie-to-you platform, although that story didn't turn out so well in the end.  But I agree with you that no Democrat has ever won with the Adlai Stevenson detached intellectual model.

by Steve M 2008-04-23 02:36PM | 0 recs
Oddly...

Obama has reminded of Jimmy Carter from the beginning.  A nice guy, a smart guy...but outsiders don't get things done in DC.  Washington is going to eat him for breakfast.

by randym77 2008-04-23 02:46PM | 0 recs
Carter's a blend. I'm convinced his

southern accent made the difference and he was elected purely because the accent masked his intellect -- thus making him appear to be a populist democrat ("type 1", shall we say).    

However, Once in DC it quickly became clear that he was actually a democrat of "type 2"-- the somewhat out of touch, arrogant, "I know better than you do" intellectual type -- and he ended up a one-termer who didn't accomplish much.   That was sad.

by miker2008 2008-04-23 02:53PM | 0 recs
Re: Carter's a blend. I'm convinced his

Yeah, John Edwards had some of the same mojo going for him.  The culturally conservative signifiers count for a lot even if the campaign you're running is very liberal.

The problem is that most people have short political memories, and we get wrapped up in trying to replicate the most superficial aspects of our past victories ("we need a southern governor!") rather than trying to drill down and figure out what's really worked for us in the past and what hasn't.

One of my favorite Daily Kos diaries was about the McGovern campaign, in fact.  From the comments:

as the supply coordinator (handled the distribution of all the literature and campaign materials, buttons, bumperstickers, etc.) for the ny office in 72, i saw first hand the result of idealism and a political campaign.

we can never make that mistake again!  it cost us the election!  and, as hard as this is for me, i can now admit, mcgovern would have been a major disaster as president - based on how he was incapable of running a national campaign! - this was also carter's mistake!

mcgovern, like carter, was from the heart - but heart wasn't/isn't enough to move the political wheel!

we need balance between the machine and the idealist!  even this current disaster in washington comes from the absence of the true "political machine" - as opposed to the "special interest groups" who have taken control and taken over the house and senate (as evidenced by the exclusion of moderate republicans from the process).

we need to have the ability to compromise with the other side of the political spectrum to bring the process back from the extremes of either side - and this is what has broken down in washington - either do it their way or do it their way!

understanding the "process" of government only comes from experience - and to throw away that knowledge (as term limits proves in states that institutes them) means that each new member will have to spend the bulk of their time learning process, but before that "process" can be implemented, a new batch of neophytes take over, only to have to spend time learning "process".  everthing stagnates, little gets done!

What's interesting is that this comment, which predates the current election, could be read as an argument for either Obama or Clinton.  They both bring good qualities to the process.

by Steve M 2008-04-23 03:05PM | 0 recs
Yes I'll have to admit that I'm very

much of the "Southern Governor" turn of mind.  :)

by miker2008 2008-04-23 03:13PM | 0 recs
Re: I guess I'm just kinda surprised

Shorter version of your post:  Liberals are bad and lose elections.  

by HSTruman 2008-04-23 02:38PM | 0 recs
I'd put it this way

You can't run as the standard bearer for the "liberal elite" and get elected.  I know guys in their 90s still sighing and getting misty eyed over Stevenson.  

I would never have considered Obama as either a leftist or an intellectual elitist at the start of this campaign, but over time he's either framing himself that way or being effectively pigeon-holed.  And if that labelling sticks, he's toast.  

I have this wonderful dream where one day I wake up, log on to the internet, and liberals have come to understand they aren't the majority and that our version of common sense is not shared by the majority of Americans.   Overnight the blinders have fallen from our eyes and we collectively understand the importance of religion and patriotism to the typical American instead of attempting to educate them all to our ideals.  

Maybe tomorrow.  

by grassrootsorganizer 2008-04-23 02:51PM | 0 recs
Amen. Unfortunately most of us

dream that they can wake up one day and find that the rest of world has finally seen the light.   I gave up the dream when Reagan was elected -- twice!

by miker2008 2008-04-23 03:15PM | 0 recs
where Obama doesn't get it

or maybe his handlers don't get it --

He seems to understand the importance of religious conventions and conventional shows of patriotism to a large chunk of the electorate -- but it seems like every great liberal that came before him he thinks he can educate them around it.  Call it the curse of believing too much in the power of rational or expanded thought, and I write that no more as a disparagement to them than to Obama.  Folks got a right to believe and feel what they believe and feel and the saavy politician figures out a way to go with several different flows while sneaking the enlightment in there -- sort of like cough medicine and a popsicle.

I've thought from the beginning of his campaign -- the people want change alright -- the question is what change and how much.  They want a change in Washington but I'm not so sure the majority is ready to question everything they believe in.  He runs like a college professor not a political animal.

He did a great job of tamping down the Wright business with straight talk but the "out of touch" aura is beginning to stick to him with each explanation.  

by grassrootsorganizer 2008-04-23 04:01PM | 0 recs
Yup. On all points.

by miker2008 2008-04-23 07:46PM | 0 recs
I would amend that in only one way;

Liberals are good and lose elections.

by miker2008 2008-04-23 02:54PM | 0 recs
Re: I would amend that in only one way;

That's how "conservatives" felt before Reagan.  The CW actually can change.  And that, and not any other reason, is why a lot of us Obama supporters embrace the idea of Obama being the Left's Reagan; someone that can sell actually progressive ideas to people who have been resistant to those ideas in the past.  

Hey, maybe I'm wrong, but this guy isn't Stevenson or McGovern.  He's a hell of a lot more talented of a politician.  You just wait and see.

by HSTruman 2008-04-23 03:00PM | 0 recs
Re: I would amend that in only one way;

If he's such a good salesman, how come the Obama camp is all about giving up on mandates without even trying to sell them?  All I hear is that it's a surefire political loser and we shouldn't touch it.

It's like Obama has all this political courage but it only seems to exist in the abstract.

by Steve M 2008-04-23 03:07PM | 0 recs
Re: I would amend that in only one way;

'Cos government mandates for private insurance are not liberal in any way, shape, or form...  private insurance mandates are a republican idea, supported by the likes of Romney and Schwartzenager...

Now, if Hillary were supporting a tax funded single payer system, that would be a different story, but her plan (even she admits) is taken straight from Mitt Romney's plan in MA.

by LordMike 2008-04-23 04:42PM | 0 recs
Re: I would amend that in only one way;

Okay, there's no government mandate for private insurance in Hillary's plan.  A fundamental component of the plan is that if you can't find any private insurance you like, there's a Medicare-like public option you can buy into.

But that's not really the argument I'm interested in having.  My point was directed at all those people who believe the reason to avoid mandates is that the issue is a political loser.  How can anyone think Obama can sell a skeptical nation on the virtues of a progressive agenda, when he won't even try to sell this relatively minor point?

by Steve M 2008-04-23 05:11PM | 0 recs
Re: I would amend that in only one way;

It's not a minor point!  It's a major one!  The government can't just force you to give money directly to another private entity without due process!  It's very totalitarian and hardly progressive...

And, yes, I keep hearing about this "medicare option"... except form Hilllary's mouth... She never trumps it.... there's a good reason why... it would never get passed into law.  We'd be stuck with pure Romneycare with a gun pointed to our heads if we don't want to be gouged.

by LordMike 2008-04-23 09:07PM | 0 recs
Re: I would amend that in only one way;

Again, the government is not forcing you to give money to a private entity.  I'm sure people would be clear on this by now if they weren't so convinced that everything that comes out of Hillary's mouth is bad.

by Steve M 2008-04-23 10:36PM | 0 recs
Re: I would amend that in only one way;

I disagree with Obama regarding mandates, but I don't think his reasoning is based on pollitical fear.  I think he really does have a philosophical disagreement with mandates under the hybrid type of plan that all the candidates' have proposed.  

At the end of the day, that isn't a deal breaker for me, even though I disagree with him and -- like many -- would prefer a plan that guts the entire health insurance industry.  In part, the issue doesn't resonate with me b/c I don't anticipate either candidates' plan will get passed as is.  

Also, I would add that the logistics of enforcing mandates has never been adequaately explained to me.  Hillary says Obama's plan will leave 15 million uninsured, but I've never understood how her mandates will significantly reduce that number when the pool of folks we're talking about will have made an affirmative choice not to get insurance when offered it at a subsidy.  What would the enforcement mechanisms look like?  How invasive would they be?  What penalties would apply?  Those are all important questions for reasons other than political expediancy.  And to my knowledge, Mass is still struggling to deal with them now.    

by HSTruman 2008-04-23 06:50PM | 0 recs
The devil, as they say, is in the

details.   You're talking about Reagan democrats, right?   Well ... not to be too elitist (but admitting that, basically, I am), they weren't exactly the sharpest knives in the drawer and I think Reagan used his background as an actor to bamboozle them.

Plus there was his "morning in America" lie, telling them everything would be fine and they wouldn't have to sacrifice in order to have the good life.   This after Jimmy Carter had talked straight to them and told them to turn down their thermostats.

It's not clear to me what the parallel is with Obama's approach.  What group is he targeting and is he trying to bamboozle them?   Yes he does have a kind of "morning in America" message but it's not so much a free ride -- at least to hear Michelle tell it with "He'll make you work to give up your illusions" [paraphrase].

It would be interesting to have this strategy made clear.  Obama isn't making it clear at all (undestandably), but maybe there's an essay or something I could read?

by miker2008 2008-04-23 07:56PM | 0 recs
by magster 2008-04-23 02:19PM | 0 recs
Jerome Armstrong you are funny!

You want to use hypothetical polls, before the nomination is over, and six months before the GE, to scare us off. After giving us two lectures about innovative math. That's funny. You might have started getting involved in politics a few years back but some of us have been around for much much longer. Drop it. It's not working.

by hania 2008-04-23 02:20PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Obama = McGovern, hmmm.  I can see that.  I can also see Obama =  Carter.  Hard to see which is worse.  BTW, I sort of see Clinton II = Johnson, without the war at the end to derail her.

by jarhead5536 2008-04-23 02:20PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Nope, she's got the war out the way already, unless we credit her recent Iran comments.  

Ironically, the best comparison to Obama is probably the 1992 version of Bill.  To paraphrase him, if one candidate is trying to scare you and the other is trying to get you to think about the future, vote for the candidate that's trying to get you to think.  I wish THAT Bill Clinton still existed.  

by HSTruman 2008-04-23 02:26PM | 0 recs
Bill used the term &quot;hope&quot; (which Obama

lifted) but is much more of a policy wonk, detail freak, and a hard-scrabble street fighter.   As for what he's up to these days, he's still got that edge but nowhere to use it.   As one of the (many) pro-Obama pundits on CNN said yesterday, Bill finds it easier being Gladys Knight than being a Pip.  

by miker2008 2008-04-23 02:42PM | 0 recs
Oh that Bill...

He was certainly a wonk, but I'm not sure how good with details Bill was.  The Clinton WH was notoriously unorganized and always off schedule.  

As far as Obama not being a fighter, I think you'll have to concede that point when this is all over.  'Cause he's gonna win, and at the end there won't be any doubt that he's earned the nomination.  I certainly give HRC credit for ensuring that's the case.  

by HSTruman 2008-04-23 02:54PM | 0 recs
Re: Oh that Bill...

Time will tell.  I'm thinking of my most recent exposure to Bill Clinton, which was watching his interview with Chris Matthews  in late 2006 (I think) when that silly documentary came out claiming the Clinton had failed to get Obama.

Clinton sat there quoting chapter and verse from everything he had done to get Obama, and when he'd done it, and who had blocked it, and how it had all unfolded ... as though it had happened the day before even though it had been 8 years ago.   Looking Matthews directly in the eye and poking his thigh with his forefinger for emphasis.  It was sweet.  

Somehow I can't see Obama doing any of that;  not the details, not the direct gaze, not the thigh poking.   Actually i think he'd make out to be above the whole silly issue, then call out the attack dogs afterward.   No?

by miker2008 2008-04-23 03:07PM | 0 recs
you meant &quot;get Osama&quot;

and you wrote "get Obama" and I'm not Obama fan, but either this was an insult, or a big problem with nominating Obama, the NLP(neurolinguistic programming) that the GOP will use to fuse them together in people's minds.

by DiamondJay 2008-04-23 03:29PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Bill Clinton ran on ideas which the Democrats had previously not embraced in 1992 as his platform, and  had 12 years as a governor of a states and two attorney general. Obama had 8 few years as a mickey mouse brick in the wall state senator and got elected senator against a walking political joke, Alan Keyes, and has been there for 3 years, only 1 of which he was not running for President. Bill Clinton was far more experienced. He also was more charismatic, who didn't stutter over every non-scripted word, and talking smoother than Obama. Big difference.

Not that I condone Hillary's tactics at certain points, but Obama is no Bill Clinton.

by DiamondJay 2008-04-23 03:48PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Yep, Bill had executive experience -- as the governor of a very small state.  And he had no real exposure to foreign policy at all.  Was her more experienced over all though?  Sure.  But if that was really the test, we'd all be voting for McCain and Bill would have lost in both '92 and '96, 'cause the folks he ran against were even more experienced than he was.  

As to your "ideas" point, Bill had some good ones.  He also had some horrible, DLC-inspired agenda points as well, and -- in my view -- made a mistake by ditching  his more populsit agenda from the '92 campaign.  Don't get me wrong, he was a good president overall, but he did some ugly stuff in the name of shifting the party to the right as well.  A too draconian welfare reform bill, NAFTA, and DOMA are good examples.  

by HSTruman 2008-04-23 07:06PM | 0 recs
&quot;without the war&quot;

Hello?  

by John DE 2008-04-23 02:27PM | 0 recs
Re: &quot;without the war&quot;

"at the end"

by jarhead5536 2008-04-23 02:35PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

The state GOP in New Mexico is already running an ad in the southern part of the state that slams Obama's "bitterness" remarks in Pennsylvania.  NM has already had its caucus but this is the place that McCain ran his first ad, as well.  Air time is cheap and this state could go either way.  Our entire delegation is up for grabs.

I don't believe that people are moving away from Obama because of Jeremiah Wright.  I believe he has lost some luster over this long primary but he lost it with folks he had a tenuous hold on in the first instance. Wright could be part of that but I don't believe it is the only reason.

I was a 100 percent Edwards supporter and fence sat until the NM caucus.  I then supported Obama fully and now I am leaning towards him.  I will vote for whomever is the nominee.

by Kate Stone 2008-04-23 02:20PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Right, the Republicans are running ads against Obama in NC b/c they want to help us choose the more electable candidate so that its a fair fight.  Uh-huh.  

by bosdcla14 2008-04-23 02:22PM | 0 recs
Re: George Stephanopoulos said it Best

Go Jerome Go !

George Stephanopoulos said it best.

" One can see Barack Obama being very competitive with McCain in November with the Popular vote. A loss might be within 3-6 points. You would see heavy turnouts in cities across america for Obama. BUT, a big BUT, when you turn your head to the electoral map. You could very conceivable see McCain beating Obama by landslide margins of over 375-400+ electoral votes against 100-125+ electoral votes for Obama. You would see Red painted in All the Big electoral states of PA,NJ,MA, in the northeast to OH,MO,MI in the midwest, AZ,NV,CO in the Southwest, and Florida & the entire south. It would be a massive defeat."

This scenario is NOT ONLY VERY POSSIBLE BUT VERY LIKELY!

There are certain things money can't buy.

by labanman 2008-04-23 02:24PM | 0 recs
Re: George Stephanopoulos said it Best

Wow, that's a "likely" scenerio?  Who knew, in the face of existing empirical evidence, that such an outcome is essentially preordained.

by HSTruman 2008-04-23 02:28PM | 0 recs
Re: George Stephanopoulos said it Best

Well, when Clinton's former press spokesman makes a wild assertion, you know it's gotta be true!

by SeanF 2008-04-23 02:42PM | 0 recs
Re: George Stephanopoulos said it Best

Do you even have a source for that quote?

Steph is a sychophant fool, but I would be surprised that such a level hackery could come even from him.

by kyle in philly 2008-04-23 03:21PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

I think Axelrod is right in saying that we are now targeting a demographic that is traditionally conservative and usually votes republican as a whole.  Conservative democrats fall into this block as well, however.  

I can see good arguments on both sides.  One is that we should move slightly to the right on certain issues and capture the "Regan dems," while the other says we should remain progressive and try to convince them to vote for our agenda.  I think this is really where the argument between Hillary and Obama lies.

by catalysis 2008-04-23 02:26PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

If he moves to the right I sit this one out.

by Kate Stone 2008-04-23 02:31PM | 0 recs
Wait.

So Obama is going to lose because he can't capture these "Reagan Dems"; but if he tries to capture them, you'd rather lose to McCain. Talk about a self-fulfilling prophecy.

by kyle in philly 2008-04-23 03:25PM | 0 recs
Re: Wait.

One can be conservative without embracing GOP talking points.  For example, fiscal conservatism... less government intervention in our private lives...  the DLC'ers never seem to get that...

by LordMike 2008-04-23 04:48PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

The Obama map shows big problems in Florida and Ohio [...]. Clinton's map is stronger, taking Florida and Ohio over McCain.

The Obama map shows OH and FL as "barely R", the Clinton Map shows OH and FL as "barely D", along with OR (7 EVs) and WA (11 EVs). Clinton makes IA and MN "barely Dem", and that's stronger than most polls in IA. WI is a tie. More than a bit of stretch to say Clinton's EV map is stronger.

McCain is going to win FL. Obama can win the EC without it, concentrating on Ohio. Clinton can't win without FL, and would have to divide her resources between the two states, probably in vain.

by BlueinColorado 2008-04-23 02:28PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

We can agree to disagree.  HRC is not going to lose MN and come on WI is not going to go for McCain.  To suggest that HRC needs FL to win the GE is nonsense.  OH, AR, and WV.  That is 31 electoral votes that bush won in 2000 and 2004.

Even if she lost IA and OR she still wins.  Even if she loses WA as well she can still win by winning NM and NH.  

BO only real chance of winnint requires CO.  Do you know the last time CO went to a northern liberal democratic senator in the GE? I cant remember but 50 years or more.

david

by giusd 2008-04-23 02:41PM | 0 recs
The most recent Rasmussen poll

has Hillary losing to McCain in Arkansas.

by Angry White Democrat 2008-04-23 03:33PM | 0 recs
Re: The most recent Rasmussen poll

Rasmussen is just one poll and we can all agree it leans GOP.  I had both BO and HRC losing to McCain by what like 10%.  There are other polls slowing HRC winning in AR.  just saying.  the Clinton's are icons in AR and IMHO she wins there.

david

by giusd 2008-04-23 04:06PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

"Electability" has always been no more than snake oil pedaled by political con artists.

It's nothing more than guessing how other people will vote in order to hoodwink those without enough sense to decide for themselves.

Anyone who would make such a specious argument would also claim, for example, that Hillary is ahead of Obama in the popular vote by disregarding the votes of caucus goers and including primaries that don't count. And who but a political crook would do that?

by Liberal Avenger 2008-04-23 02:31PM | 0 recs
Clinton's map stronger?????

There are 10 (?!) states that are within any reasonable margin of error on the Clinton-McCain map. This is unbelievable. Where is the bottom, Jerome Armstrong?

by hania 2008-04-23 02:31PM | 0 recs
Re: Clinton's map stronger?????

And he doesn't even mention how she polls with Such high negatives

He is proving Cherry pickin' is easy when you are behind...

by gil44 2008-04-23 02:59PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

CIRCLES?!  THEY BOTH HAVE CIRCLES?!

We're doomed.  Once again Jerome serves up a winnar.

by Skaje 2008-04-23 02:32PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Jerome = concern troll with a megaphone.

by sorrodos 2008-04-23 03:33PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Bill Clinton won South Florida.  Mind you he poured a gazillion dollars in pork into South Florida and Gore was there every other minute but he won it.  She could send Bill down there to remind them and prommise more goodies to come.

by Kate Stone 2008-04-23 02:33PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

The fact is no northern liberal democrat has won the WH in 40 years.  The reason is these dems dont connect with reagan dems.  And I agree Clinton didnt win reagan dems he won women reagan dems. These are HRC biggest supporters and if you look at the polls these are the voters who have said they will vote for McCain in the GE instead of BO.

And BO supporters can disagree all they want but manywomen reagan dems see has campaign as sexist and demeaning to HRC and that is that. As my wife says when women vote dems win.  No dem can win without the gender gap and women reagan dems are key to this.  As i recall Gore won women by 10% or so.

The bottom line is the president is picked by the electoral college and BO was to win every state that Gore won (plus NH) he even then he is only 264 electoral votes.  He will have to win CO and CO is a conservative blue dog democratic state.

CO is pro-gun, anti-gay marrage, and has not voted for a liberal northern dems since?? It must be before JFK.  So HRC supporters like myself are to beleive that BO can win the GE and he does this by winning CO.  Maybe you can see why RHC Supporters  dont really think he can win.

HRC wins OH, AR, and WV and that is 31 electoral votes that gore did not win.  If you add that to the gore states (plus NH) she is at 295 electoral votes.  She has 25 electoral votes to spare.  Even if you say she loses two of IA, OR, and WA (and losing WA seems really unlikely) she still has the electoral votes to win (and come on she will win MI).  And she could easily win FL.

I am just sayig that no democratic has won the WH without OH and we are told that BO will redraw the electoral map by bringing in more indies.  Fine but if he cant against McCain and he has a couple of more months like April and March he will be the next McGovern.

david

by giusd 2008-04-23 02:35PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Reagan Dems haven't voted for a democrat... well, since Reagan...  They certainly enjoy Hillary's pandering and attention to them, but when she askes them to the big dance, they are going to show her McCain's flag pin.  In exit pollling in Ohio, Texas, and PA, 20% of Hillary voters said that they already are going to vote for McCain.

They love the attention, and love to flirt with us, but wil never commit.  We've been chasing them for years and years, and it never works... so, why bother trying... there are new, more reputable coalitions to be built.

by LordMike 2008-04-23 04:52PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Why isn't anybody talking about AA support??  In order to win a GE the Democratic candidate needs to carry atleast 70% of their vote.  During the primaries HRC is averaging 11%....Where's the outrage on this point??

by hootie4170 2008-04-23 02:37PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

So if BO is the VP on the ticket do you think AA will stay home.  Or do you think BO would say no to being the first AA to be on the GE ticket???

david

by giusd 2008-04-23 02:43PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

That's a hypothetical....I am pointing out how all the focus is on white "blue collar" voters and how Obama isn't carrying a share he would need to be successful in the GE....The same could be used for Clinton and the AA vote, especially if the SD's overturn the pledged delegate leader...They WILL NOT come out or will not support Clinton.

And to some how portray Obama as a symbol at the VP position to attract AA voters is wrong.

by hootie4170 2008-04-23 02:53PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Yeah, why doesn't he just wait his turn?

VP is a pretty good job for colored folk, right?

As long as 70% of the AA population are okay that Obama was denied the nomination eventhough he won in pledged delegates and popular vote because a few hundred white guys all decided that he wasn't 'electable' as Hillary because she won an election where he wasn't on the ballot.

The supers are not going to hand this to Hillary, but this is the only scenario whereby she becomes the nominee--and you think that's just fine.

Honestly, I have no idea how the mind of a Clinton supporter works.

by Brannon 2008-04-23 03:42PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

please, i don't think they'd be that ungrateful. As much as I support their rights, just because a candidate happens to be one of them, it doesn't mean they are entitled to have a nominee of their race. Whites make up 3/4s of this country, blacks make up one in ten. Large parts of the white electorate may not tolerate Wright/typical white person in large enough numbers to deny him the presidency. I'd rather the presidency than placation to one wing of the party, and a small minority of this country.

by DiamondJay 2008-04-23 03:55PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Are you insane? Seriously. Did you really just say that you don't think AA's will be 'ungrateful' if the SD's ignore the popular vote and pledged delegate count because you don't want one of their kind at the top of the ticket?

Yas massr, i be soooo grateful, massr.

by Brannon 2008-04-23 04:02PM | 0 recs
what I want doesn't matter,

its what America wants. I have no problem with a black on the top of a ticket, and I'm sure not many Americans in general do, but much of America does have a problem with a black who called a radical black power pastor who calls America the "US of KKK A" and "God DAMN America" his "moral advisor." There is also a commercial highlighting his weak on crime policies too, which reinforces the racial aspect.

by DiamondJay 2008-04-23 04:14PM | 0 recs
Re: what I want doesn't matter,

Look I get the anti-American charge, but where is the racist charge coming form, when did Wright say anything that was anti-white?

by Socraticsilence 2008-04-23 04:26PM | 0 recs
Re: what I want doesn't matter,

so you're gonna tell me that working whites won't find his comments about America being "controlled by rich white people" in an obviously negative tone, along with "United states of White america" is not gonna come off as white-hating to working whites?

by DiamondJay 2008-04-23 04:37PM | 0 recs
Re: what I want doesn't matter,

"his weak on crime policies too, which reinforces the racial aspect."

Right, you clearly have no problem with a 'black' on the top of a ticket.

You need to do some soul searching.

by Brannon 2008-04-23 08:00PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Why would they be "grateful" if the candidate that has the most popular votes in the primary, and the most elected delegates gets pushed aside because of his race.  If that isnt the textbook definition of racism I dont know what is.

It is very saddening to see these code words giving cover for people basing their decision merely on race

by xenontab 2008-04-23 07:22PM | 0 recs
Clinton has more votes

when you count every vote. Hillary has the lead. If Hillary continues to have the most popular votes, wouldn't giving Obama the nod because he's black be racism?

by DiamondJay 2008-04-23 07:24PM | 0 recs
Re: Clinton has more votes

This is a screaming lie. If you want to have 'elections' where candidates aren't allowed to campaign and one of them isn't on the ballot and the rules are changed in the middle of the campaign--seriously, why don't you just move to Russia?

Or maybe China or something. There the 'official' candidate always gets coronated--you never have to worry about some uppity 'black' jumping ahead of his turn.

Think it over, you may be much happier there.

by Brannon 2008-04-23 08:06PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

VP is a good job for the less experienced candidate.

If you want to understand Hillary supporters, understand that they think Obama stepped ahead in line in front of the more qualified candidate.

Ethnicity has NOTHING to do with it.

by Larissa 2008-04-23 04:21PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

DiamondJay: "I have no problem with a black on the top of a ticket, and I'm sure not many Americans in general do, but much of America does have a problem with a black who called a radical black power pastor who calls America the "US of KKK A" and "God DAMN America" his "moral advisor." There is also a commercial highlighting his weak on crime policies too, which reinforces the racial aspect."

Yeah, clearly it has nothing to do with DiamondJay's opinion.

by Brannon 2008-04-23 08:09PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Perhaps I was not clear - I was not defending anyone on the thread, or speaking specifically for anyone on the thread - I was speaking only for myself and others who shared my opinion (about lack of experience.)  Hillary could be green and Obama purple, and we'd still support Hillary on the basis of being better qualified for the job.  Trust me, for many of us, ethnicity truly has nothing to do with it and never would.

by Larissa 2008-04-24 07:51AM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Speaking of women voters -- if the rumor that Elizabeth Edwards is going to endorse Hillary Clinton is true, Obama can kiss the women voters he does have goodbye.  Elizabeth Edwards is revered by women.

by Kate Stone 2008-04-23 02:37PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

You sure don't sound like an Obama supporter.  

by Blue Neponset 2008-04-23 03:29PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

I don't even thik that Elizabeth is known by most women much less revered.

by Socraticsilence 2008-04-23 03:41PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

What ever.  Do you really beleive that??

david

by giusd 2008-04-23 04:08PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

I do, I think Elizabeth is well-loved by some in the activist base (myself included), but I seriously doubt there is some great and profound love for the wife of a 1 term senator and failed VP canidate, I mean do you care deeply about the thoughts of  Hadassah lieberman (not to totally conflate the two, but at the same time it highlights the inantiy of giving her this massive influence).

by Socraticsilence 2008-04-23 04:32PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Why even take a chance on Obama being the next McGovern (no disrespect to either, both being fine men), when there is a sure November winner in Clinton?

by Bob H 2008-04-23 02:37PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Good luck with AA vote.....

by hootie4170 2008-04-23 02:54PM | 0 recs
A sure winner??

A sure winner.

With a 54% negative rating.

Riiiiiight.

by Angry White Democrat 2008-04-23 03:35PM | 0 recs
Re: A sure winner??

The thing is HRC may have high negs but she still beats McCain and runs even with BO against McCain. So imho this is a bs argument.  She is not running a popularity contest.  Bo on the other hand cannot win if his apporval goes under 50% since he is running on his story of change and not experience.  so i am just saying this argument is weak.

david

by giusd 2008-04-23 04:11PM | 0 recs
Hillary campaigned for McGovern.

Which is unsurprising, since she's our weakest candidate since probably Mondale.

by MBNYC 2008-04-23 02:39PM | 0 recs
Re: Hillary campaigned for McGovern.

Do you have a link or something to back this up or is just the usual bs.  You know the usual HrC is X and we know it is true because a BO supporter says so.

david

by giusd 2008-04-23 02:45PM | 0 recs
Re: Hillary campaigned for McGovern.

Do you have a link that says Clinton would choose Obama as her running mate??

by hootie4170 2008-04-23 02:55PM | 0 recs
Re: Hillary campaigned for McGovern.

She said this after super Tuesday and it was BO who shot it down.  I dont know how to paste a link in but if you could tell me that would be cool.

http://wcbstv.com/topstories/clinton.oba ma.ticket.2.669799.html

david

by giusd 2008-04-23 03:52PM | 0 recs
Of course.

McGovern even endorsed her.

[McGovern] recalled receiving a phone call in 1972 from his campaign manager, someone named Gary Hart, saying he'd come upon a bright, young man in Arkansas named Bill Clinton who had a hardworking friend named Hillary Rodham and they both were going to work Texas for McGovern.

"There's nothing in politics," said McGovern, "that requires more courage than trying to sell George McGovern in Texas." The crowd roared. McGovern praised the entire current field of Democratic candidates and said he hoped to live long enough to see an African American president. But, he added, "We have an old rule of courtesy in the United States: ladies first." Another crowd roar.

And thus the Democratic candidate from 1972 returned the favor to the wannabe Democratic candidate of 2008. He endorsed her candidacy.

And there you have it.

by MBNYC 2008-04-23 03:13PM | 0 recs
because McGovern isn't narcisistic

McGovern doesn't wanna see more candidates end up like him, so of course he's endorsing Hillary. He knows damn well why he got crushed.

by DiamondJay 2008-04-23 03:40PM | 0 recs
Hahaha!

The Audacity of Denial strikes again!

You're wrong, of course, because Clinton hasn't only run a McGovernite campaign - how do you go from inevitable to impossible in a few weeks? - she's also adopted McGovernite policy. He proposed a $1,000 baby bond; hers is the same adjusted for inflation, $5,000.

So yeah, you're totally wrong. Obama's the guy to beat, my friend, and you folks just don't seem capable of that. Something wrong with her campaign, perhaps?

:-)

by MBNYC 2008-04-23 04:15PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

   Ahhhh!  McGovern!!!!!  Dukakis!  Wallllter Mondaaaaale.  

by cilerder86 2008-04-23 02:41PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Sometimes I wonder if partisanship has made people forget how to read.  What part of "don't rely solely" do people disagree with, exactly?  I didn't realize that the Democratic Party consisted 100% of white working class voters.  Heck, my inclusion in the party would drop it down to 99.99%.  Likewise, I don't see any implication from that quote that "Obama would not do much better in the GE with white lower-income workers."  The obvious implication is that they aren't going to pin every hope of winning the GE on one demographic, which would be foolish for either candidate.

What gets lost in all of this ridiculousness is that Obama improved his standing with many demographics as compared to Ohio, which proportinally has a larger AA population.  Obama improved over Ohio among the following demographics: 1) 60 and over; 2) white; 3) white men; 4) white women; 5) less than $50k; and 6) Protestant.  He maintained the same level of support among college educated and non-college educated.  He dropped off slightly among Catholics. So, if anything, he's improving among most of Clinton's key support groups.  Perhaps that is one bright point in this long primary season.

by rfahey22 2008-04-23 02:42PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

I guess Sometimes I wonder if partisanship has made people forget how to read started when HRC as no of course not when asked if BO is a muslin.  And then at the end of her anwser she said i take him at his word.  And then for months BO supporters went on and on say she said "i take him at his word".  Sound right.

david

by giusd 2008-04-23 02:48PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

You really know how to elevate the discourse around here.

by rfahey22 2008-04-23 03:07PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Good point, are they voting FOR Clinton or AGAINST Obama.

Besides, at what point does appealing to white working class voters come at too great a cost I.E. the Republican Lite arguments of the DLC? I'm not saying screw 'em, not at all, but there is a difference between discussing issues important tot that demographic and raw pandering at the expense of who you are/should be.

by MNPundit 2008-04-23 02:49PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Axelrod's argument is a red herring.  Of course no Democrat relies on winning the white working-class demographic.  But they most certainly need to win a large percentage of the subset of white working-class voters WHO VOTE IN A DEMOCRATIC PRIMARY.  These voters, who favored Hillary yesterday, are a swing group that may or may not stay with the Democratic Party in November.  The fact that they happen to belong to a larger group that mostly votes Republican is totally irrelevant.

Let's assume for the sake of argument that if Hillary were the nominee, she would lose huge numbers of African-American voters to McCain.  That would be a big problem for her, right?  The only good answer for Obama is to argue that yeah, these white working-class voters may support Hillary now, but they're perfectly willing to support Obama if he's the nominee.

If he can back that up, then great.  If he can't, then trying to dismiss the issue by saying that most white working-class voters are Republicans is really a smokescreen.  No Democrat is going to get elected if they can't hold onto large chunks of the African-American vote - or the white working class vote.  These are things we need to sort out sooner rather than later.

by Steve M 2008-04-23 02:57PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

The electability question will be answered in November. I'm not sure how you surmise that Obama polls poorly in the Midwest and other regions. He polls better then Hillary in most midwestern states (IA, MI, IL, MN, WI). All but OH.

Not to mention he does better in southern states such as GA and NC, the southwest (AZ, NM), CA, NV,  and the Northwest (OR, WA). He does better in mountain states (MT, CO, ID) as well as some northeastern states (CT, NH, VT, ME).

one thing is for sure when looking at Hillary. Her poll numbers start off a lot stronger then they end up. The opposite is true for Obama.

by alex100 2008-04-23 02:45PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

How do we know the opposite is true for BO. Did the last two months not exist.  He approval numbers are much weak now that in Feb???  So how do we know the opposite is true.  

david

by giusd 2008-04-23 02:50PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Thanks to her Rovian negative attacks.....

by hootie4170 2008-04-23 02:57PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Really?  It is HRC fault.  I know to BO supporters everything is HRC fault.  Did HRC bring up Rev Wright???  Did HRC make BO make that dumbass comment about bitter???  

This is the funny thing.  EVERYTHING is HRC fault.

WEAK.

david

by giusd 2008-04-23 03:17PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Yeah really!!!! Maybe if you would come up for air instead of being nose deep in Rove's playbook you would see...Get back to your work, you've got some Obama bashing comments to formulate...

by hootie4170 2008-04-23 03:29PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Did you hide hit this post.  Dude are you taking bitter a little to far.

david

by giusd 2008-04-23 06:13PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

I guess i was asleep when BO and his campaign was knee deep in the Bosnia narrative.  The HRC is a liar?  And didnt BO say neither he or his campaign pushed this story???

That sounds really similar to what i had to hear for 8 years in the 90's.  

david

by giusd 2008-04-23 03:56PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Yeah and if you remember the debate he let her of the schnide concerning Bosnia, saying we say alot of things and some things get misstated he didn't grill her....Then she had a chance to reciprocate the courtesy but instead went Rovian on Farrakhan, the Flag Pin and Ayers...Whatever.....

by hootie4170 2008-04-23 04:06PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Are you sure because it was my understanding that he was asked that question by GS and not HRC?

And after the smears BO has hit HRC with i am sorry but i am not interested in any BO whinning about the mean question.  Do you remember Tim Russet asking if it upset HRC that no one liked her.  I wonder where thta narrative came from. How many times did BO say HRC is divisive????

How many times?

david

by giusd 2008-04-23 04:15PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

both Democrats have seen their numbers plummet, rise, plummet...

you roll with the punches but overall, Obama polls better.

no amount of asinine spin from Jerome can change the fact that the only way to know who's more "electable" is having one of these go up against McCain.

by alex100 2008-04-23 04:55PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

He's polling just fine.

by heresjohnny 2008-04-23 03:39PM | 0 recs
Hmmmm

I'd rather we the people elect the nominee than have a few hundred people overturn our will.

by Cleveland John 2008-04-23 02:46PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

by Jim J 2008-04-23 02:46PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

I agree that Obama has had a tin ear in some instances about the electorate.  I think Axelrod's statements today about the working class were apalling.  

However, Hillary Clinton, in becoming what she most disliked as a young woman, is much more problematic for me.  

Obama can learn, does learn, does make adjustments.  I think the only adjustments she makes at this point in her life is undercutting her own values in the race to become president.  She seems blinded by the game. Unfortunately, so  does Senator Clinton.

And by the way, for what it's worth, I e-mailed and wrote the Obama campaign with my real horror at the stupidity of Axelrod's remarks today.  Incredibly dumb, not politically, that's obvious, but from a human standpoint.  I almost think that is a fireable statement, again not because of politics but because it is insulting.  It reminds me of when during the Vietnam war, you had all of these upper middle class college students protesting and evading the draft, and totally dismissing the hard hats, the working class guys who were actually getting drafted, going, getting killed, and coming back to taunts from these spoiled brats.  In other words, Axelrod really pissed me off.

by mady 2008-04-23 02:50PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

whoops, last sentence in 3rd para belongs at end of comment, for what it is worth.

by mady 2008-04-23 02:51PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

I'll vote for whoever is nominated.  If we would all do that rather than screaming about not voting if our guy or our woman isn't nominated then the nominee will be electable.  Simple.

by Kate Stone 2008-04-23 02:52PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Maybe some of us don't want the other guy elected?  Usually I am comfortable with whomever ends up being the nominee.  Not so much this year.

by cjbardy 2008-04-23 05:53PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Of course he is devolving to the McGovern coalition -- he has used the McGovern strategy to get the nomination; run as a reformer against your own party (in order to try to attract independents and moderate Republicans).

In '72 that meant lumping "big labor," and labor's rank and file, together with "big business" as equal evils.

In 2008 it means lumping the Clinton administration with Bush as equal evils -- and lumping working class Democrats, especially older working class women who have been a mainstay of the party in recent years, with the white Southern voters who (across all classes but most especially middle class and affluent) left the Democratic party 40 years ago.

Just as in '72, this is a very divisive strategy that is likely to undermine his ability to win in November. Like McGovern's, his strategy depends on large numbers of young voters showing up (something they rarely do) and on large numbers of (affluent) independents and moderate Republicans sticking with him in the general. In other words, it's a strategy that depends on uncharacteristic behavior from some of the least dependable groups of voters.

by esmense 2008-04-23 02:53PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Great post.  

david

by giusd 2008-04-23 03:58PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Spot on. McGovern also used the rules that he created to extract the greatest number of delegates from places where dems are not competitive in the GE.

by Jerome Armstrong 2008-04-24 12:34AM | 0 recs
You are missing the electability of McCain

How come Obama leads Mcain by 8 in Pennsylvania in two week old Rasmussen poll. Pennsylvania has the typical demographics we are talking about.  The truth of the matter is that Obama and Hillary run similarly with a couple exceptions per the map in THIS WEBSITE! However, Obama has the ability to expand the map. Without FL and OH and with either NM or COLO Obama beats McCain. Hillary is a good candidate but this thing is over and it is time to move to the next phase, but with type of acumen blogged lately (even Kos blasted the manipulations)- perhaps is better that one limits oneself to reporting.      

by RAULC 2008-04-23 02:58PM | 0 recs
Re: You are missing the electability of McCain

The GOP is peppering NM with ads right now, esp. in the rural conservative south.  They want this state and have started early.

by Kate Stone 2008-04-23 03:00PM | 0 recs
Re: You are missing the electability of McCain

I am sorry but how does BO get to 270 with NM but not CO.  Gore's states, plus NH, only equals 264 and that includes Gore winning NM in 2000?  Do you mean NM and CO?

Just a serious question.

david

by giusd 2008-04-23 04:01PM | 0 recs
Re: You are missing the electability of McCain

I stand corrected- NV+NM w/o COLO= 269. NV was not part of Gore/Kerry= but polls have BO ahead-it seems we would need COLO.

by RAULC 2008-04-23 05:38PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Many of Obama's college aged voters will be in school in November, many far from home.  If they are not allowed to vote locally because of their student/temp status then they have to vote absentee.  Lots of luck finding an envelope, a stamp, and remembering to mail it in.

by Kate Stone 2008-04-23 02:59PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

They have been in school in February, March and April too, but that didn't stop them from voting for Obama.  Also, students can register at their schools even if they reside out of state.  

Another BS Clinton talking point bites the dust.

by Blue Neponset 2008-04-23 03:09PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Since I am an Obama supporter I had no idea it was a BS Clinton talking point.  Glad to hear they can vote where they go to school.  Thanks for your snarky reply.

by Kate Stone 2008-04-23 03:18PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

You are welcome.  

by Blue Neponset 2008-04-23 03:24PM | 0 recs
Similarities?

npr

nohillaryclinton

by Nobama 2008-04-23 03:01PM | 0 recs
Re: Similarities?

Wow, no Photoshop here!

The similarities are SCARY.

by Zeitgeist9000 2008-04-23 03:08PM | 0 recs
Re: Similarities?

They're both well hung?

by heresjohnny 2008-04-23 03:38PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Jerome, my favorite part of your post was when you linked to the two maps. Why? Because you must not have actually looked at them.

If you had, you would have seen that while Hillary is currently beating McCain in a number of swing states, 117 of those electoral votes are "barely dem." That means they are mostly within the margin off error.

Obama is either leading or statistically tied in states that would give him 360 electoral votes. Clinton, on the other hand gets 311 votes at most.

On the flip side, Obama has 211 electoral votes outside of the margin of error, while Clinton only has 172.

I'd say this looks a hell of a lot better for Obama than Clinton.

by BlueGAinDC 2008-04-23 03:02PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

You are going to be very disappointed when Obama is sworn in in January 2009.  

by Blue Neponset 2008-04-23 03:03PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

I wish the founders had left us with the Parlimentary System.  Our election process is shameful.  Plus, Bush would be out by now.

by Kate Stone 2008-04-23 03:08PM | 0 recs
Superficial analysis

Sorry, but comparing religious observance between MD and PA is apples and oranges. Many of the religiously observant in Maryland were...black! That just might explain the difference.

And as for moderate and slightly conservative, the difference is what kind of moderate and conservative. Obama wins middle and upper-middle class moderates and slight conservatives that populate much of Virginia and Wisconsin. These are not McGoverniks and they despise Hillary Clinton. Clinton wins working class moderates and slight conservatives.

There are three determinants here: age, race and class. Nothing has really changed. PA is the 2nd oldest state in the country and along with OH has one of the largest non-college educated white populations. That's Hillary's base.

What matters is whether or not these voters will go for Obama in November. I suspect most will given McCain's utter lack of appeal to these voters.

by elrod 2008-04-23 03:10PM | 0 recs
Hey I was looking at Joe Garcia's new ad

and he has the O flag/sun thing going on too.

Uh oh looks like he is going to lose based on the excellent analysis that I have seen on O flags/Suns.  Poor Joe he didn't know that when he designed his logo.

by Student Guy 2008-04-23 03:11PM | 0 recs
Wow.

I think i'm going to have to stop reading your posts Jerome, because they've devolved to such a rote level of hackery that I literally don't know where to begin.

thank goodness for Todd, Singer, etc, or i'd stop reading altogether.

I hope you will be able to come to grips and get behind the nominee eventually.

I'm sure you won't miss me in the echo chamber of MyHRC.com

-C.

by neutron 2008-04-23 03:17PM | 0 recs
Passive aggressive proxy war much, Jerome?

See this post, in which the Great Satan himself calls out Jerome. And lo, but three hours thenceforth...

by kyle in philly 2008-04-23 03:33PM | 0 recs
McSame is a loser.

He's hit his ceiling of support. McCain has been getting a free ride but matter what happened (Wright, etc...) the polls of Obama vs. McCain barely moved and this isn't even the GE yet.

by heresjohnny 2008-04-23 03:37PM | 0 recs
Message to Superdelegates

"Obama can't win, so vote for the person who lost to him!"

by snaktime 2008-04-23 03:41PM | 0 recs
OMG, Obama's negatives.

McGovern Part 2.

Dobbs is finally talking about media bias and this is just sad:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jbJVkIzKq 64

Anyhoo, he outspent her 3 to 1, has the blogs and media and still got thumped in PA.

That should tell you something about Obama's negatives.

by gotalife 2008-04-23 03:43PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

The intellectual dishonesty on this site has reached a new low with Jerome's last two posts.  

Your "new" math was especially fun.  You know, its actually insulting your readers to promote such misinformation, Jerome.

We know you think HRC is better.  Fine.  Your argument so the supers (both sides only path to victory) should be simply that -- that on a qualitative basis she'll be a better president.  I happen to feel differently but I can respect that argument.  I would, as Obama has, also like to have the benefits of arguing to the supers that he has won more contests, the popular vote, and the most delegate.  I think those are strong points, but ultimately the supers have to make up their own mind.  Please, however, don't try to come up with some bullshit rationalization that she is actually ahead on the objective metrics.  If I only had a million more dollars, I'd be a millionaire.

by caprog 2008-04-23 04:18PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

I can't see how supporters of a candidate with a 30% trustworthy rating and unfavorables of almost 60% are talking about electability.

And if you think that "Reagan Dems" are going to stop what they've been doing for 30 years and vote for a Democrat for president if Hillary is nominated, I've got a bridge in Brooklyn I want to sell you.

If Barack were eaten by a bear, and Hillary were the nominee today, in a couple of months, the article you cited would be saying the exact same thing about Hillary.  Why?  'Cos that's how democrats are framed in the media and by the GOP.  Don't forget how they smeared Clinton... he was painted as even MORE "elitist" than Obama...  They'll do it again... no matter how many boilermakers Hillary chugs down.

Democrats should be true to themselves and stop trying to pander to republicans.  The DLC Republican Lite strategy has been a failure for over a decade.  It's time to try a new way!

by LordMike 2008-04-23 04:23PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

The only way to resolve this is for Obama to offer Clinton the VP slot. The only constituency we can't afford to lose is the Black vote. That would be devastating. I would had a hard time voting for a ticket with Clinton on it and I would fear for Obama's life as the Clinton's would do anything for power and the next $109M.

Don't troll me - I am just being honest even if you don't like what I am saying.

by comingawakening 2008-04-23 04:46PM | 0 recs
Don't Taze me Bro!!!!

zzzzzzzzt!

zzzzzzzt!

That'll teach you to speak honestly. Hmmph!

by edmandspath 2008-04-23 05:43PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Working-class voters don't matter??  Someone explain that calculus to me.  Obama is clearly running to represent only one-third of the country.  Hillary WILL be the Democratic nominee.

by mddem08 2008-04-23 05:13PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

brianharer

wonkette

by Nobama 2008-04-23 05:26PM | 0 recs
Jerome, this is assumes a lot.

It isn't reasonable (not to mention, it is self-defeating) to talk about demographics as though they are locked to voting patterns. They can change, and do--not instantly and not all at once, but they do shift and sometimes in big numbers.

If we talk about issues and make our case, people can start to move. But we need to talk in clear, contrasting terms about fundamental issues--what is great about Barack is that he has the money, huge amounts of money--he can afford to say things in frank terms, without "framing" and all that.

If he talked frankly about structural economic problems that keep so many Americans in debt, dependent completely on their employer, unhealthy, and unable to retire--people will respond to that.

We should be pushing our candidate to do that, not fall back into the trap of strategic issue incrmentalism to take advantage of people's existing biases and habits.

People want a real choice--they'll respond to it.

by chicagolife 2008-04-23 05:32PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality
hil
by edmandspath 2008-04-23 05:35PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality
gghttp://i137.photobucket.com/albums/q217/tseaver341/hoakley.jpg?t=1209000945">
by edmandspath 2008-04-23 05:38PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Obama has won more contests, more votes (even when you include Michigan and Florida) and more pledged delegates, and yet HIS electability is being questioned?  Really?

How about the fact that Obama puts more states into play in the general than Clinton?  How about the fact that according to polls, Obama is STRONGER than Clinton against McCain in big states that she won, including California and Michigan?

Come on folks, get real.

by RussTC3 2008-04-23 06:12PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Yes, Obama must be losing the evangelic vote. That is why he tied Clinton among protestants who attend church weekly, and tied Clinton among people who attend church more than weekly (even including Catholics, among whom he doesn't do well).

by alephnul 2008-04-23 06:40PM | 0 recs
Jerome's lost it

So on a blog that is supposed to be progressive, where we're trying to get Dems elected, Jerome Armstrong thinks it cool to compare Obama, the Dem nominee, to a terrible candidate.

What a joke, just like this site for being the last holdout from reality.

It will be a cruel summer for Jerome and the rest of you rubes.

by DemUnity 2008-04-23 07:17PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality
Jerome
not long ago you posted an article by Michael Barone together with an electoral map that basically said that Obama's base lies with the very liberal, people with income at $100k+ and African-Americans. Barone even said that Obama's weakness, his fatal flaw is his inability to connect with Jacksonians, that electoral group without whom any Democrat will lose. In fact what I see now is the this: since Iowa the Obama coalition has narrowed down to the three demographics that can be called the McGovern coalition. Which means with the exception of Wisconsin and Illinois he has lost all state primaries where his coalition does not exist. That is the troubling part.
If that was not enough what Axelrod said today regarding the dispensability of "white working class" voters (in this case they are registered Democrats, not Democrats fro a day or Obamacans, but dyed in the wool blue-collared democrats the backbone of the PA democratic party) is further troubling. That means we can say goodbye to most of the midwest and the rust-belt including PA, not to mention Florida too. That is simply too grave a risk for the Democratic party to take come November. While the armchair pundits from their million dollar homes call for Senator Clinton to bow out, time and again she has shown her ability to garner those votes that can potentially switch to the other side in the GE.
by tarheel74 2008-04-23 07:19PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

After the Dina Titus experience in NV gov '06, I'm still frustrated when electability is denied as a criteria. I voted for Jim Gibson in our primary solely due to electability. The political writer in the Las Vegas Review Journal, a Democrat, wrote a column with the same theme. Gibson was favored by the state Democratic operatives, and generally polled better against GOP nominee Jim Gibbons.

Meanwhile, on the Las Vegas Gleaner and other progressive Nevada sites, the September '06 period can basically be paraphrased along these lines: "How can anyone be dense enough to pretend we should have avoided Titus due to vague electability concerns? She was far superior to Gibson throughout the primaries -- better organized, more energy, superior commercials, better debater, the aggressor, and our party base behind her including the youth."

Yeah right. Meanwhile, she was too liberal for the state. She had made damning remarks in summation of Northern Nevada voters in the state senate, ones that were certain to be summoned in devastating GOP commercials.

And Titus lost by 4 points, to Gibbons, a scandal plagued boob. Immediately post election, the Las Vegas media was asking how Democrats dodged near certain victory, by ignoring electability and nominating Titus?

So don't tell me this is not an applicable topic. Our base is fully capable of blindfolding itself and dictating a nominee who doesn't earn a second look from the vital demographics. And that's an increasingly likely offspring from a success like '06, dictated by second term midterm influence, but postulated as new genius in play.

The comparisons to McGovern are interesting but not entirely relevant, not when McGovern ran smack into the landslide scenario of incumbent with his party in power only one term. Obama has a favorable climate, and hardly an overwhelming foe.

It's going to tip based on white women, per usual. They went heavily for Bill Clinton, roughly 50/50 in Gore/Bush, then tilted GOP in '02 and '04 after 9/11 security concerns. Bush won that group by roughly 10-11 points in '04, all the difference from 2000. Since Obama has weakness among Hispanics he can't afford to falter among white women. It was discouraging in '06 when we lost that group by a couple of points, according to exit polls, even in a midterm avalanche, and after we had led that demographic in pre-election polling throughout the cycle.

by Gary Kilbride 2008-04-23 07:47PM | 0 recs
I guess you have to grasp at these straws

if you're a Hillary supporter.

What's today's news, the day after her win in PA?

Obama announces two new superdelegates to her one.  Fifty Edwards backers also announce for Obama.

After he wins NC, that state's supers will go for Obama, too.

Does Obama have potential liabilities?  Of course he does.  But Jerome is blowing them far, far out of proportion.  And, as usual, he's ignoring Hillary's possible weaknesses.  To cite only the most obvious - Hillary can barely win blue collar white men when she's competing against Obama.  How do you think she's going to do if she's up against McCain?

by TL 2008-04-23 08:13PM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

LOL. A friend emailed and said I've used that Dina Titus example before, but as a reason to avoid nominating Hillary, since she was a woman and polarizing, like Titus.

You know, I'm sure I did, here or elsewhere.:)

That's what spills from attrition. I was a Mark Warner supporter, then John Edwards. Preferring Hillary to Obama is like a realignment in the Derby, if my top pick is scratched.

And there's no denying Obama is a closer fit to Titus, in terms of potentially too liberal for the landscape.

by Gary Kilbride 2008-04-23 08:29PM | 0 recs
This video is educational...

...regarding more than just the electability, which admittedly is an important question for all democrats.

http://youtube.com/watch?v=_R6gcbC9Hz4

May be something we should learn more and think about.

by supero 2008-04-24 12:38AM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

You also don't want to forget Hillary's "Screw 'em" comment regarding Southern working class voters. At least 4 people heard her say it. All Obama did was say they don't solely rely on those voters, and they shouldn't.

by Becky G 2008-04-24 06:08AM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Thanks for this. There seems to be a plethora of evidence coming out now from many non-partisan sources making clear that Obama will be a sure loser in the GE.

No doubt the Super Delegates are paying very close attention to that. One only hopes none are on some dirty money payroll.

Obama should drop out. His divisive comments, his mean- spirited and sexist media pandering and his profound lack of experience makes him a liability to the Democratic Party.

Obama needs to drop out and grow up.

by aroundtheblock 2008-04-24 06:49AM | 0 recs
Re: Electability mentality

Those are the dumbest comments I heard from a Democratic operative in years. His comments are as bad as his bosses "Bitter" comments. I guess "Dumb and Dumber". With his comments Axelrod has just written off Reagan Democrats.

by indydem99 2008-04-24 06:58AM | 0 recs
Electability argument ad nausium

Gee...here we go with the tired old electability argument.

The very same argument that gave us Kerry over Dean.

The truth is that no one knows what is going to happen in November based upon polling done now while we have a contested primary going on.

The endless arguments from the trailing candidate have taken on ridiculous proportions.

Here's a strong argument for giving Clinton the nomination...actually win it.

Oh wait, she blew that opportunity back in March when she failed to have a plan after Super Tuesday.

It's over, after May 6th, it will be even more over, after June 3rd it will finally be over.

The sooner the primary fever swamp is drained, the better.

Oh, yeah...and shame on all you veterans of the 2004 primary wars from letting yourselves lose your frigging heads again.

Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result is the definition of what again?

by Nazgul35 2008-04-24 08:35AM | 0 recs
Unbelievable pic

History repeats itself?

by observer5 2008-04-24 10:08AM | 0 recs

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