Thursday, November 13, 2008

Re: Seven Days Later

From one of our Montana Correspondents:

I keep wondering why the election vote was so close since McCain had to run against Bush, the war, the collapse of the economy, etc. "The Economist" issue of 8 Nov 2008 has some interesting stats that might help explain.

Obama won the popular vote 52% to 46% and vote the electoral vote by 190 (364 to 174). He owes his victory to blacks, Hispanics, the young, women of all races, the poor and the very rich. They provided the huge margins for his win.

He won 95% of blacks, 66% of people aged 18-29 and 68% of first-time voters, 66% of the Latino vote (the GOP natives rejection of immigration reform has cost it dearly) and 17% of white voters who made over $200,000 per year. He won independents by 8% and 54% of the catholic votes, a vital swing group in the industrial states of Pennsylvania and Ohio.

He lost to McCain by 18% of all white voters without a college education. That's the largest group of those voting and I think that was the main reason the popular vote was as close as it was.

"John McCain got 5 million fewer votes than George Bush got in 2004. Around 53% of the over-65 group voted for John McCain, but around 10 million elderly have died in the U.S. since 2004. For voters under age 30, 66% voted for Barack Obama. If this trend continues, the Republican Party may simply die out." (LBOTC)

In my opinion, the GOP has to address issues of the younger voters or they will continue to lose future elections. The times "they are a'changing." For better or for worse. But they are a'changing.

Reply: I think it felt closer than it actually was. This is only the 3rd time since World War II that the Democrats got more than 50% of the vote (1964 and 1976 were the other two). That compares to 7 times for the Republican Party, and 6 times neither party broke 50%.

By running as “mavericks” McCain and Palin were appealing to the 5% to 10% to 20% of the American electorate that is ready to vote for third party candidates. I don’t think the Republican Party can count on those voters in 2012, particularly if Obama does well.

Obama had things to run against too: disappointment with the Pelosi Congress, skepticism that Democrats will end the war, concerns about his experience in the face of the war and the collapsing economy, etc.

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