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Gregory Pratt

Article: Why John McCain Will (Likely) Be President

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I sat down about two weeks ago to write an article about the 2008 race and why I believe the conventional wisdom is all wrong. This, that I am about to paste, is the article that I wish to share with SoxTalk. I am willing to answer any Qs, if anyone has any, but of course in posting this I open it for discussion by you all and not necessarily by me.

 

http://officeoftheindependentblogger.com/2...y-be-president/

 

I recently came to the conclusion that, barring a handful of improbable events occurring, John McCain will be the next President of the United States.

 

How did I make this analysis? I examined the current political landscape of the United States, electoral tendencies and the candidates themselves to determine whether or not the conventional wisdom around College campuses, in the political parties and on television talkshows (namely that the race is the Democrats’ to lose) was accurate or not. I did not merely inspect the lengthy, nuanced subtleties of the 2008 race for the Presidency but also took into consideration the brutal, coarse realities of American politics and came away with cause for concern, because John McCain is formidable in ways no other Republican would be and both remaining Democratic candidates have a long, uphill climb ahead of them if they are to ever reach the Presidency as anything but visitors. This is because of the nature of this nation and because of their individual merits and failures.

 

The way I often introduce this topic is by asking, When was the last time a Northern Democrat was elected President of the United States? and the answer is John F. Kennedy. That is because the re-alignment of the South that occurred after Lyndon Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act solidified the South for the Republican Party and the South is generally unwilling to vote for Northern liberals for President, as any look at the electoral results for President in any race since 1964 will show. Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton face a significant hurdle that every Northern Democrat faces when he runs for President: they are unlikely to win any Southern state but Florida, and even that is a great challenge that I’m not sure either is up for. Whether or not they recognize this Southern crisis (though I imagine they and their advisors would) or whether or not Liberals in general recognize it as reality is not a concern of mine. I recognize it as reality, and the South’s refusal to vote for Northern Democrats has been proven time and time again. It is clear, to me, that the Democratic Party cedes the South and almost the entire Midwest, Great Plains and Mountain States to any general Republican.

 

Some have argued to me, “Hillary has Arkansas!” and I don’t think that’s the case. She was never particularly popular in Arkansas as the First Lady of that state and the distance in years between her time there and now, as well as the gap between New York and The Natural State, is overwhelmingly against her. The other Southern, conservative states are unlikely to go for her as well because they don’t go for Democrats very often, never for Northern Democrats and almost certainly not for a woman. A similar cynicism applies to Barack Obama, who, I’ve been told, has a fighting chance because of the amount of black voters in these Southern states but the truth is that black voters are always at, above or just below 90% for the Democrats and there aren’t enough black voters in Georgia to turn that state into a Democratic state against a Republican with a Northern Democrat running against him. That’s true without even mentioning the racism that still very much exists in the South and would ensure Republican victories in Dixie all night every night. The truth is that the Republican Party is about a lock to win everything considered “The South” and all those states in the “center” of the country that the Republicans usually do win.

 

However, losing the entire South and most of “the core” is not what has caused me to believe that the Democrats are likely to lose the election, although it is a significant red flag and challenge. I believe they will lose the election in larger part because John McCain is a perfect Republican candidate at the perfect time against, I think, perfect opponents. Democrats will have to focus on retaining their base states and taking a couple of swing states to win the Presidency; if the Democrats win, it will be a squeaker as I don’t see their two current candidates cutting into Republican lands, for reasons I’ve detailed earlier. That means they will have to win states like Iowa, Missouri, Ohio, Pennsylvania, perhaps New Mexico, but here we encounter a significant problem only, previously, hinted at. Compare Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton’s ability to win Republican states with what will be McCain’s ability to win Democratic states and the Democratic Party has big problems on its hands.

 

Why can McCain win Blue States? Many reasons. First, John McCain can run as an agent of change, since he is not in the Administration and has often been at odds with Bush. That is crucial to understand, as he robs the Democratic Party of its greatest-though-flawed-drive-in-2004-and-likely-still-strongest-motivator today. If McCain can provide the public what it wants (”conservatism”) while giving it a break from the Bush Administration (”change”) he can floor the Democrats. I believe that he can do both, and will. Further to the point is that independents and Democrats generally respect the Senator from Arizona because he is considered an independent, fair thinker. He is a consensus candidate, a man who can generate enthusiasm from both parties, who has no demographic challenges ahead of him in certain Democratic states because Democratic states have shown, time and time again, that they will vote for a Republican if a mediocre Democrat is running, or one that is far too “liberal”.

 

Specifically, I think of Michael Dukakis, George McGovern and Adlai Stevenson versus George H.W. Bush, Richard Nixon and Ike Eisenhower. I think of states like Michigan, Pennsylvania, Minnesota, New Hampshire, and purple states like Iowa, New Mexico. I look at Hillary Clinton as a candidate who does not have the appeal of her husband, regionally or personally, and while the “Clinton Machine” is strong it was not the Clinton machine that got Bill Clinton elected in Kentucky, the Dakotas and several Southern states. It was a lousy economic situation, a weak President and the charisma and talent of Clinton himself who is a far better politician than his wife even if she’d be a better President. Obama, on the other hand, is a guy who I think would have his lunch eaten by John McCain, who would expose him like Bush exposed Dukakis, like Nixon exposed McGovern, like Stevenson exposed himself: as an “egghead” by traditional standards who speaks in platitudes and votes “liberal”. People forget that Dukakis was creaming George H.W. Bush in the summer and once the Republican attack machine grabbed hold of him, “The Duke” was obliterated. I see the same fate for Obama. I see them obliterating his middle name (”Hussein”) and his last name, his “liberal” voting record (they have already started to talk about his), his youth and inexperience, his platitudes. Obama has a demonstrated problem attracting middle-class, working-class voters, and let’s be clear: the national electorate is not the same in any way shape or form as the Democratic primary electorate. Primary voters have nominated John Kerry, Dukakis, Mondale, Carter (twice, and he won once by fluke), McGovern, Humphrey. Many of these men were great men, with bright ideas, but they were all candidates who could be written off as weak, too liberal or both, without any regional appeal.

 

Some say, “Obama would simply fight back against the Republicans, unlike Dukakis and, say, John Kerry,” but I don’t see that as viable option. Obama’s strength is as the candidate of hope, right? How would that look when he becomes a pitbull against the Republicans? Besides, Democrats have long demonstrated themselves incapable of defeating Republicans solidly, and the last time we won an advertising war, at painting our opponents the way we want to paint them so as to damage their electoral chances was 1964 with the famous Daisy Ad. Until Democrats prove that they can swing with the electoral heavyweights, it must be assumed that the Republican Attack Machine is stronger than the Democratic Whimper Factory. That’s another reason McCain will (likely) win: they know how to play this game, and Democrats are woeful amateurs in the last quarter century.

 

So how can the Democrats win? you ask, because you refuse to say that they will lose. They can win one way and one way only: by successfully painting John McCain as an extension of George W. Bush, and to do that (which is a tricky proposition) they will have to wrap their fists around McCain’s infamous “100 years in Iraq” comment and hit him [over and over with it]. There is very little way around it, otherwise, because he is a moderate and an independent as perceived by the public and he is a candidate who will have broad appeal unless he is labelled a warmonger. Unless the Democrats can successfully tear him down (which is difficult because of their historical ineptness and the fact that McCain is a war hero, not to mention the unpredictability of the situation in Iraq which could very well get better and is not all that terrible currently) they will lose because their candidates lack national appeal and will be easily labelled and ridiculed, their organization is not as good as the Republicans, McCain is a strong candidate running at the right time in his party’s history. I think it will be an electoral landslide in favor of McCain and Democrats will be left to wonder why the rest of the nation didn’t buy the platitudes of the Democrats who aren’t Bush, “how could this have happened!“ I will be there to point out that McCain isn’t Bush, either, and Americans like Republican government, overall.

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ZZZZZZZzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

 

 

that is my question.

 

 

I'll hang up and listen to the answer.

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You mention the Dakotas. Probably had to have been thinking of me, because no one else really cares about them.

 

It's a good read, and something I hadn't considered. For someone who doesn't care enough as I should about politics, I'd hope this situation plays out, and atleast provides some insight to those that believe it is the Democrats race to lose. I think it's much more even going into then a few people want to believe.

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Pratt im not going to lie I just skimmed your article but my guess is that you have stumbled on the fact that states almost always vote the same way, and unless you get a candidate who can successfully flip one (like Clinton with Arkansas or if Gore had won Tennessee) the results are already in, and Republican's will win.

 

The even bigger problem for Democrats is that McCain could flip a Democratic state.

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QUOTE(Soxbadger @ Mar 7, 2008 -> 09:42 AM)
Pratt im not going to lie I just skimmed your article but my guess is that you have stumbled on the fact that states almost always vote the same way, and unless you get a candidate who can successfully flip one (like Clinton with Arkansas or if Gore had won Tennessee) the results are already in, and Republican's will win.

 

The even bigger problem for Democrats is that McCain could flip a Democratic state.

states always vote the same way? Then why is it the map of states, who votes for whom, is different every single time?

 

What you are saying applies to probably half or two-thirds of the states. But that's the key - the states that DO change from time to time, and that even if they haven't changed, tend to run very close. To say the results are in now is like saying Barry Bonds didn't use steroids. :P

 

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This is already and interesting election, and as soon as it's decided between Obama and Clinton on who gets the nominee, it will only get better. For some reason I think the possible vice president could have an affect on which party gets elected. If Clinton were to get the nominee and McCain wants Huckabee to be his VP, there's no way she gets Arkansas. If McCain wants Gov. Pawlenty from Minnesota as his VP, there would be a slim chance, but nonetheless a chance of Minnesota going to the Republicans. As for Obama, he's hoping for the young voters to come out and vote, but unfortunately they never do, I won't believe it until I see it. Plus I don't know what percentage of minorities come out to vote either.

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Northside,

 

What part of "almost" did you miss. Yes in every election there are going to be different results, but at the same time most states follow trends and do not switch from one side to another often.

 

Lets look at Illinois:

 

http://www.270towin.com/states/Illinois

 

Notice the big blocks of blue and red.

 

California:

 

http://www.270towin.com/states/California

 

Ny: http://www.270towin.com/states/New_York

 

Since 1988 (20 years) not once have either of those states gone Republican in a Presidential election, yet you claim that states often change.

 

You then say 50% to 66% of the states dont change (notice I said almost once again so now your basically just starting to agree with me lol).

 

I stand by what I said, most states historically vote the same way over blocks of time. That does not mean that when fundamental shifts occur in political philosophy that the state will blindly follow a party, but it does say when all things are considered and when looking at a span of 20 years (end of Reagan till now) not many states have significantly changed. Iowa has gone Republican once in that time period, and Im sure i could find a few other examples of states changing, but for the most part they remain constant.

 

What that says is unless Hillary or Obama can flip a state that has gone Republican over the last 20 years, the chances of them winning are not very good. The electoral votes per state has not drastically changed and if anything I believe that the red states gain more electoral votes each time at the expense of the blue states due to population increases.

 

Im not sure why you brought up Bonds, that has nothing to do with this as and my guess is just to try and distract the point and make some issue about something else you disagree with me on. At the end of the day, my opinion is my opinion, and you cant argue predictions or what I think will happen. I am a democrat, I voted for Gore and helped Wisconsin go Democrat in that election, but just because I want something to happen does not necessarily mean that I believe it to be true.

 

There is a site with the voting record of every state, you can do research instead of throwing around 50%-66% because honestly 2 out of 3 states voting the same is a lot of damn states.

 

And VP does play a role, which is why Democrats like guys like Edwards from the South who can maybe flip a state.

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QUOTE(NorthSideSox72 @ Mar 7, 2008 -> 07:50 AM)
states always vote the same way? Then why is it the map of states, who votes for whom, is different every single time?

 

What you are saying applies to probably half or two-thirds of the states. But that's the key - the states that DO change from time to time, and that even if they haven't changed, tend to run very close. To say the results are in now is like saying Barry Bonds didn't use steroids. :P

Survey USA, who's been pretty much as right on as a pollster can be this season, yesterday released a set of matchup polls of 600 or so voters in each state, with some interesting results. Both Obama and Clinton have current electoral leads, although you could argue that Clintons is weaker because there are more toss up/fewer strong clinton states. But the real interesting thing is they each pull off the win in different ways. Obama loses Florida, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey, but makes up for it with a bunch of wins out West. Hillary is behind in Oregon, Washington, etc, but pulls in Florida and Pennsylvania to pull it off.

 

Of course, this is just the early polling, and it's hard to believe that even with McCain on a ticket places like New Jersey, Washington, and Oregon are truly going to be in play, but especially with Obama, the pattern of states could show some pretty strong shifts this year. He really puts a dent in the West.

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Let me preface this post by saying that I am Democrat who supports Obama. Sorry for the length…

 

McCain strikes me as the type of person who would be really hard to beat in a general election. Now that he is the Republican candidate, he can back off of the over the top conservative/evangelical rhetoric (Iraq for 100 years, bomb Iran, thanking Hagee for the endorsement, etc.) and just be himself. Put this guy in office and I’m sure he gives Hagee a polite F you and never speaks with him again.

 

The guy has a hell of a story, and just strikes me as an all-around bad ass. I mean, he wrestled, boxed, and dated a stripper. McCain finished near the bottom of his class at the Naval academy and tallied some 200 demerits. His teachers in flight school said he wasn't very good, and that he just didn't seem to give a sh*t. It’s not that he was dumb/incompetent, he just didn’t like having to conform. Once he gets to do things in the field, to be himself, he proceeds to be a hell of a pilot, and pilot instructor.

 

He strikes me as an American leader. We love presidents with an attitude (not GWB attitude, I think he comes off as more stupid/stubborn). McCain has that. He has that American bravado. That swagger that you are not going to force his hand. He knows his sh*t, knows how to get sh*t done, and he doesn’t need you to tell him how. He’s not going to pander or beg; he’s going to tell. There is no doubt he will listen to others, you have to as the president, but that attitude will dictate the conversation. When a person has that strength, people know not to dick around and to get to the point. And if he doesn’t like what you have to say, he is going to let you know.

 

I support Obama because he is what I want from a president (Intelligent, eloquent, etc.). However, something inside me knows that McCain would be a good president. Maybe his attitude will rub some people the wrong way, but he will still be able to get them to work with him. I’m sure you all have worked in groups with a McCainesque leader. You might not have enjoyed it, or even hated the guy/girl, but I bet your work was done well.

 

Good grief that was a lot longer than I intended. Maybe if my civil procedure class was not so boring I would have paid attention rather than rambling on so long…

 

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QUOTE(Soxbadger @ Mar 7, 2008 -> 11:09 AM)
Northside,

 

What part of "almost" did you miss. Yes in every election there are going to be different results, but at the same time most states follow trends and do not switch from one side to another often.

 

Lets look at Illinois:

 

http://www.270towin.com/states/Illinois

 

Notice the big blocks of blue and red.

 

California:

 

http://www.270towin.com/states/California

 

Ny: http://www.270towin.com/states/New_York

 

Since 1988 (20 years) not once have either of those states gone Republican in a Presidential election, yet you claim that states often change.

 

You then say 50% to 66% of the states dont change (notice I said almost once again so now your basically just starting to agree with me lol).

 

I stand by what I said, most states historically vote the same way over blocks of time. That does not mean that when fundamental shifts occur in political philosophy that the state will blindly follow a party, but it does say when all things are considered and when looking at a span of 20 years (end of Reagan till now) not many states have significantly changed. Iowa has gone Republican once in that time period, and Im sure i could find a few other examples of states changing, but for the most part they remain constant.

 

What that says is unless Hillary or Obama can flip a state that has gone Republican over the last 20 years, the chances of them winning are not very good. The electoral votes per state has not drastically changed and if anything I believe that the red states gain more electoral votes each time at the expense of the blue states due to population increases.

 

Im not sure why you brought up Bonds, that has nothing to do with this as and my guess is just to try and distract the point and make some issue about something else you disagree with me on. At the end of the day, my opinion is my opinion, and you cant argue predictions or what I think will happen. I am a democrat, I voted for Gore and helped Wisconsin go Democrat in that election, but just because I want something to happen does not necessarily mean that I believe it to be true.

 

There is a site with the voting record of every state, you can do research instead of throwing around 50%-66% because honestly 2 out of 3 states voting the same is a lot of damn states.

 

And VP does play a role, which is why Democrats like guys like Edwards from the South who can maybe flip a state.

I just brought up Bonds because your tone was a little strident - "the results are already in". You state it as if it were fact, when its far, far from it. That's the parallel.

 

And honestly, it doesn't matter if all but 2 or 3 states always vote the same - if 2 or 3 don't then the verdict is clearly not in. It just means that the focus is narrower on where heavy campaigning will occur.

 

And I'll throw this log on the fire - this is exactly why the electoral college does more harm than good today. It effectively disenfranchises roughly two-thirds of the voting populace, if not more.

 

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Once again you are not placing what I said in context:

 

unless you get a candidate who can successfully flip one (like Clinton with Arkansas or if Gore had won Tennessee) the results are already in, and Republican's will win.

 

UNLESS YOU GET A CANDIDATE WHO CAN SUCCESSFULLY FLIP ONE

 

I didnt state it as if it were a fact, I merely stated that if the results remain the same from the last election to this election, the Republicans will win. It is up to the Democrats to flip a state. I dont know how this is strident, it is fact based on the last 2 elections.

 

So once again, if the Democrats do not flip a state that has voted Republican in the last election, the Democrats will lose. Thats not a prediction, thats not strident, it is a cold hard fact.

 

As for the electoral college, no I dont agree with it but your argument is not really the reason. Just because states go a certain way most of the time, does not mean that the electoral college has disenfranchised the minority. In fact I believe that there are only 1 or 2 times that the electoral vote has differed from the popular vote (Bush v Gore being the last).

 

My problem with the electoral college is that it makes votes disproportionate, if you look at a state with the least population it gets 2 votes regardless of how many people those 2 votes represent. Where as if you look at a big state they get a proportional vote dependent on how many people, in almost every case the big states electoral vote comes out to represent more people than the small states vote. Therefore at the end of the day the small states have less electoral votes, but the people who live in the state actually have more influence per person.

 

 

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that's a strange hypothetical, though. Of course if the results remained the same as last election the republicans will win. They won last election, so if the results remained the same, they will win this election. I mean, yeah.

 

 

 

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QUOTE(bmags @ Mar 7, 2008 -> 01:42 PM)
that's a strange hypothetical, though. Of course if the results remained the same as last election the republicans will win. They won last election, so if the results remained the same, they will win this election. I mean, yeah.

 

Exactly. I think Soxbadger just had a really long-winded way of saying "If the Republicans get the same number of electoral votes as last time, they will win." Well duh.

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And you can act like its common knowledge but most people do not realize that states generally vote by historical trends.

 

No one has really brought up some names of states likely to flip, which is what this discussion should be about. Which states will the Democrats win that they lost before?

 

I just dont really see that many states where its likely to flip, thus my belief.

 

/shrugs

 

I could have also said that whatever way Ohio goes the election will go as Ohio has only gone for the wrong candidate once (Nixon over Kennedy)

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QUOTE(Soxbadger @ Mar 7, 2008 -> 02:21 PM)
And you can act like its common knowledge but most people do not realize that states generally vote by historical trends.

 

No one has really brought up some names of states likely to flip, which is what this discussion should be about. Which states will the Democrats win that they lost before?

 

I just dont really see that many states where its likely to flip, thus my belief.

 

/shrugs

 

I could have also said that whatever way Ohio goes the election will go as Ohio has only gone for the wrong candidate once (Nixon over Kennedy)

 

I don't know where you get this. It's generally accepted that states like Illinois, California, and New York will always go blue, while places like Texas will always go red. Then you hear the phrase "battleground states" constantly in the media. The two big ones usually are Ohio and Florida. There are several others as well. I think most people realize this.

 

Just look at this map from wikipedia:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:2008-US...-Map_vector.svg

 

Here's the page on common "Swing States"

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Swing_state

Edited by StrangeSox

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QUOTE(Soxbadger @ Mar 7, 2008 -> 12:21 PM)
No one has really brought up some names of states likely to flip, which is what this discussion should be about. Which states will the Democrats win that they lost before?

 

I just dont really see that many states where its likely to flip, thus my belief.)

If you go by the Survey USA Polling, here's your flipping list from 04-08.

 

Obama pickups:

New Mexico

Colorado

Nevada

North Dakota

Iowa

Ohio

Virginia

 

Obama Losses:

Pennsylvania

New Jersey

 

Hillary Pickups:

New Mexico

Arkansas

Florida

West Virginia

Ohio

 

Hillary Losses:

Washington

Oregon

New Hampshire

 

According to their polling, Obama loses some of the more recent Swing states (Florida, PA) but makes up for it with major inroads in the Midwest and in the West. Hillary takes a more normal path, picking up Arkansas and sweeping the 3 recent swing states of Ohio, Florida, and PA. The idea in their polling seems to be that an Obama/McCain race puts a lot of surprising states out west in play, while Hillary has a shot at winning by taking Ohio and Florida.

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GP, I generally agree about these geographical divisions. But I think you underestimate a couple things. (And most of this is just 'by feel' -- I can't back this up with poll data.) First, I think Obama's support will be stronger in the midwest than you might figure by past results. Not only because he is a midwestern candidate (although that's part of it), but also because I think there is a deeper mistrust of Bush's Iraq war there than in other places. In large part, I glean this off my relatives. Some who are very conservative, and live in very conservative (rural) areas, have a deep animus against Bush because of the war. (When I first heard the comments I was very surprised.) McCain is completely in bed with Bush on this issue, inescapably. Clinton's voting past makes it more difficult for her to bludgeon him with it, of course, so I really only give Obama a significant edge in that area. Second, I think you underestimate the anger the far right has against McCain. I'm not saying they will be so disaffected with McCain as to jump to the Dems -- but they won't be eager to work on his campaign, either. While Bill Clinton certainly was an appealing candidate in some ways, personable, smooth, etc, there was also a huge conservative disgust with Bush I after he broke his tax pledge. That sort of mutinous indifference could be crucial in close races. The far right wants an ultra-conservative who can look pleasant enough for a general election -- something they got in Bush II. They don't have that in McCain, they don't even like the guy, and I don't think they'll work as hard for him as they would for their guy.

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QUOTE(Soxbadger @ Mar 7, 2008 -> 08:21 PM)
And you can act like its common knowledge but most people do not realize that states generally vote by historical trends.

 

No one has really brought up some names of states likely to flip, which is what this discussion should be about. Which states will the Democrats win that they lost before?

 

I just dont really see that many states where its likely to flip, thus my belief.

 

/shrugs

 

I could have also said that whatever way Ohio goes the election will go as Ohio has only gone for the wrong candidate once (Nixon over Kennedy)

 

well, yes. But there will still be swing states. Even bush didn't win the exact states he won in 04 as in 00 but it looked pretty much the same.

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I don't believe that survey at all. Obama wins north dakota, iowa, minnesota, washington, oregon, arkansas, colorado, and north dakota? Not likely.

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QUOTE(max power @ Mar 8, 2008 -> 05:25 PM)
I don't believe that survey at all. Obama wins north dakota, iowa, minnesota, washington, oregon, arkansas, colorado, and north dakota? Not likely.

Well, couple points. First, Survey USA has been as reliable as any pollster out there this season. Second, Obama doesn't win Arkansas, Hillary does though. Third, Obama only wins North Dakota once, not twice. Fourth...this is your baseline. There's a small matter of a campaign to run through first. Obama is unlikely to lose, New Jersey, for example.

Edited by Balta1701

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I interject only to note that I do not pay much attention to most polls right now about "Hillary or Obama vs. McCain" because the Republican Attack Machine has not gotten a thorough hold of them in one case or a hold of them at all in another and it is too far away from the election to gauge anything precisely, with the numbers. No true contrasts have been drawn, and these sorts of races narrow as we get closer and after the convention. I will say that I believe the recent continuation and escalation of Clinton v. Obama is good for the Republicans.

Edited by Gregory Pratt

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I mentioned that the far right is unlikely to work for McCain. Here's an editorial (by Brent Bozell, liberal media grumble grumble) in yesterday's WaPost that explicitly threatens that:

 

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/conte...8030702845.html

 

Conservative leaders, particularly those in talk radio, cannot and will not be silent. They will not betray their principles and their audiences. Tens of millions of activists turn to them for guidance. These activists could be, and need to be, McCain's ground troops, but unless and until conservatives believe him -- and believe in him -- they will not work for his election.

 

His list of demands is, predictably, extreme and silly.

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http://www.cnn.com/2008/POLITICS/03/26/dem...poll/index.html

 

New polls show many Democratic voters could swing their support to Sen. John McCain in the general election if their candidate isn’t nominated. […] The poll suggests if Obama wins, a majority of Clinton supporters — 51 percent — would be dissatisfied or upset. The number was 35 percent in January. The poll had a sampling error of plus or minus 7.5 percentage points. […] According to a Gallup Poll taken March 7-22, about one in five Obama supporters — or 19 percent — said they will vote for McCain if Clinton is the Democratic nominee. If Obama’s the nominee, more than one in four Clinton supporters — or 28 percent — said they’d vote for McCain.

 

The last time many Democrats were willing to vote for a Republican was during the Reagan years: 26 percent in 1980, and 25 percent in 1984.

 

The bitterness of the Democratic division is not the only reason so many Democrats are considering voting for McCain. A CNN/Opinion Research Corp. Poll taken February 1-3 suggests many Democrats like McCain. The poll showed Democrats were split over McCain: 44 percent said they like him, 42 percent disliked him.

 

The bolded is what stands up to me. I firmly believe that Clinton and Obama are weak middle-class candidates while John McCain should be able to trounce either in a Nixonian, Reaganesque or beat soundly (though not overwhelmingly) in a Bushian-88 way. We'll see, obviously there's half a year left, but I look at Obama and Clinton and I do not see, or hear, candidates that will work.

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