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Election 2008 postmortem

  1. Dec 2, 2008 #1

    Ivan Seeking

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    http://www.officialwire.com/main.php?action=print_page&rid=81755

    For me it was both, Bush, and the Republicans because they supported him. At this point I might vote for Donald Duck before I would support another Republican adminstration. If a Republican had emerged as a maverick, that might have been different, but when I see a candidate who calls Nixon's two-bit thug, G Gordon Liddy, a "great American"... The Palin appointment was the nail in the coffin.

    That said, I think Obama would stand out in any election. But at the same time, I think things had to get this bad before someone like Obama was possible. And were he just another ordinary candidate who happened to be black, then he would have had no chance at all.
     
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  3. Dec 2, 2008 #2

    LowlyPion

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    Poor GW. Born with a silver spoon in his mouth (Ann Richards had that right) and skated through college and National Guard duty with the help of daddy and now clueless and unable to see how totally inept he was as the CEO of America?

    If he thinks people will be lined up to seek wisdom from the Oracle of Crawford after January 20, he is living in a totally isolated world where he can only get one channel on his cable - FOX.

    Now with his ventriloquist in chief slinking off to obscurity himself in Wyoming ... all he's got is Laura to cushion the world at his door and some vacuous planning for a Library at SMU, like any will want to be going there for anything more than a bet.
     
  4. Dec 2, 2008 #3

    Ivan Seeking

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    ...silver foot... :biggrin:
     
  5. Dec 2, 2008 #4

    D H

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    You think too little of poor GW. Look at these statistics:

    [​IMG]
    Nobel laureate Richard Feynman's IQ = 124



    [​IMG]
    IQ = 125

    Hmm. On second thought, that might just be a sign that IQ scores above 90 are more-or-less meaningless.
     
  6. Dec 2, 2008 #5

    Ivan Seeking

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    Please don't degenerate to a lock.
     
  7. Dec 2, 2008 #6

    russ_watters

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    I thought I had started a thread on this (maybe I started to write the post and never finished, but I know I wrote something), but in any case, here are the exit polls of the last three elections:
    http://www.cnn.com/ELECTION/2008/results/polls/#USP00p1
    http://www.cnn.com/ELECTION/2004/pages/results/states/US/P/00/epolls.0.html
    http://www.cnn.com/ELECTION/2000/results/index.epolls.html

    I do tend to agree that the primary motivation here was a rejection of Bush. Even Bush seems to acknowledge it, though his ego prevents him from going quite the whole way with it. The other factor would be the Obama buzz that motivated his constituents. The exit poll data shows a small (~2% of the electorate) across-the-board shift in leanings from the republican to the democratic candidate combined with a demographic shift that favored Obama (ie, better voter turnout due to the excitement factor). This supports both.

    Now what does this tell us about Obama and the current position of the US? Obama won by 53-46% in popular and 68-32% in electoral votes. The press calls it an "electoral vote landslide", though that judgement covers about a third of the presidential elections we've had, and this would be the closest "landslide" in about the last 100 years (I'm not going to calculate it further back than that). No doubt, with the economy where it is today, Obama is likely to have an easy time in the next election, but this is hardly a resounding victory for Democrats or Democratic ideals. I think that given the circumstances, it shows the US is still a center-right country. The democrats put up a candidate who they considered a superstar (and they certainly gave him the $ and turnout support of one) and the best possible economic and global political situation for an election and were able to garner only a small majority of the votes.
     
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2008
  8. Dec 2, 2008 #7

    Ivan Seeking

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    Yes, "landslide" becomes a matter of definition. However, a two to one margin is impressive, and there are two landslides that are referred to here. One was the Presidential electoral map, and the other was the head count in Congress.

    I recently heard one Republican [I think a Congressman] state that the Republican party is now irrelevant.

    Did Obama's color, name, and unusual history, become irrelevant? In the end, did Obama gain more through black voters than he lost with whites, due to his color? Most estimates put racial bias against Obama at around 5 or 6%, but I don't know if exit polls are available to check this number. Also, historically, blacks overwhelmingly support the Democrats, but what was the rate of participation? Did we see significant numbers beyond those seen in previous years, for black voters? And if so, where did it matter?
     
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2008
  9. Dec 2, 2008 #8

    D H

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    To answer your question, Ivan: from http://projectvote.org/fileadmin/P...mographics_of_Voters_in_the_2008_Election.pdf,
    In this memorandum, we assess demographic shifts that took place in the 2008 general election compared to the 2004 general election. While analysis to date has largely commented on the relatively unremarkable increase in the overall number of votes cast, the data presented below suggest that the voting population on Election Day was significantly different—if not significantly larger—than in the last presidential election.

    While it should be noted that the data available at this point, so soon after the election, allow for only a preliminary assessment, we find that votes cast by Americans of color in 2008 increased by 21 percent from 2004, based on a review of exit polling and preliminary administrative data. Votes cast by Americans ages 18-29 increased by 9 percent. Votes cast by whites in 2008 declined slightly compared to 2004.

    Overall, the available data indicate that the composition of the 2008 voting population was markedly different from 2004, even though the overall numbers of voters who cast ballots did not increase significantly.​
     
  10. Dec 3, 2008 #9

    BobG

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    This one goes one step further to include exit polling on how latinos voted in 2008: Preliminary Analysis of Hispanic Vote

    Obama is one candidate. How his race affected 2008 isn't a long term story.

    Tom Tancredo riling up Republicans on anti-immigration does have long term consequences. Colorado, New Mexico, Nevada, and Florida flipped from Red to Blue mainly because of the Hispanic vote. McCain held his own home state of Arizona, but you can chalk that up as a loss for Republicans in 2012, as well. Texas won't be a solid red state in the future, either.

    By time this economic crisis ends, Democrats might not be so popular with unions either, which might give a chance for Republicans in the Rust Belt. The bad news is that, even if that happens, they're trading a growing part of the country for a dying part of the country.

    There's a real possibility that the Republican Party will become the Bible Belt party without some serious evaluations of their priorities.
     
  11. Dec 3, 2008 #10

    russ_watters

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    Could you cite a source for the racial bias? I can't see how it would be possible to separate out a loss in the net gain he got. Pre-election stories discussing the Bradley effect talked almost as much about the possibility of a reverse Bradley effect. The final Gallup poll was Obama 53%, McCain 42%, among likely voters and the actual was 53%-46%. Late undecideds voted for McCain, but I don't know how it can be justified that that 4% he picked up was all about (or even partly about) racism.

    In any case, the exit polls answer the other questions: Obama had more whites vote for him than Bush did, so there is no (net) loss there. Blacks vote heavily democratic and votor turnout was not up more than other factors. Obama gained more white and latino votes (over Kerry) than he did black votes.

    [edit: data below]
     
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2008
  12. Dec 3, 2008 #11

    russ_watters

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    Vote by race:

    2008
    White (74%): 55% McCain, 43% Obama
    Black (13%): 95% Obama, 4% McCain
    Latino (9%): 67% Obama, 31% McCain

    2004
    White (77%): 58% Bush, 41% Kerry
    Black (11%): 88% Kerry, 11% Bush
    Latino (8%): 53% Kerry, 44% Bush

    2000
    White (81%): 54% Bush, 42% Gore
    Black (10%): 90% Gore, 9% Bush
    Latino (7%): 62% Gore, 35% Bush

    Going back one more: http://www.cnn.com/ALLPOLITICS/1996/elections/natl.exit.poll/index1.html
    1996:
    White (83%): 43% Clinton, 46% Dole
    Black (10%): 84% Clinton, 12% Dole
    Latino (5%): 72% Clinton, 21% Dole
    (Note: these are tougher to interpret because of the strong 3rd party candidate, Perot. Perot probably took more votes from Dole than Clinton, though.)

    This data does show a steady general trend of an increasing percentage of blacks in the electorate. And Obama was certainly helped by the 95% of the black vote he got, but the extra 2% of white voters he got (vs Kerry) and extra 14% of Latino voters he got each represents more total votes than the extra 7% of black voters he got.

    FYI, the US is 80% white, 13% black, 14% latino.
     
  13. Dec 3, 2008 #12

    russ_watters

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    The party elite may be losing sight of the standard Republican priorities, but a typical Republican (closer to the center) still isn't going to vote for a Democrat who'se priorities are diametrically opposed. The problem is that while Obama was energizing Democrats to turn out in bigger numbers (than in 2004), McCain did not succeed in getting Republicans to turn out evan as much as in 2004.
     
  14. Dec 3, 2008 #13

    lisab

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    Yes, the stars were aligned just right...and it's about freakin' time. Damn stars!!! Where've you been?

    I just want to feel proud again. It's been so, so long....
     
  15. Dec 3, 2008 #14

    Ivan Seeking

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    I meant that the state of desperation would allow for his message of change, and his natural talents, to supercede his inbuilt negatives - inexperienced, radical, black, Christian-Muslim terrorist, socialist, Marxist, Communist, and Chicago thug foreigner.

    I do now. Don't you? For the first time since 2004, I'm glad that we couldn't leave. I didn't think this kind of turn around was possible.
     
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2008
  16. Dec 3, 2008 #15

    lisab

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    Yes. Yes, we're on the right path. I feel like we're waking after having a bad fever, still bleary-eyed but finally thinking clearly...but finding we have to run a marathon before we can have a drink of water. Time to bear down, folks.
     
  17. Dec 3, 2008 #16

    Ivan Seeking

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    The Bradley Effect is another issue altogether. Polls were taken in which people admitted to racial bias. The Bradley Effect refers to people that are racially biased, but who lie about it when polled.

    http://www.cnn.com/2008/POLITICS/10/13/obama.bradley.effect/

    We also had a number of discussions about this here.
     
  18. Dec 3, 2008 #17

    Ivan Seeking

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  19. Dec 5, 2008 #18

    Evo

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  20. Dec 5, 2008 #19

    Gokul43201

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    Perot wasn't even on the ballots in 1996. There was no 3rd party candidate in 96. Perot was in 92; he took votes away from Bush.

    In 2004, Bush and Kerry were essentially tied for the Independent vote, but Obama beat McCain by 8% among Independents. That suggests that either McCain is farther to the right than Bush or ... (since we know that's nonsense) ... Obama appealed more to moderates despite McCain having a long centrist history. And one reason that was possible was that while Obama was becoming more and more centrist over the last couple years, McCain was heading farther and farther to the right to appeal to the Conservative base. What's worse, he (McCain) didn't stop when the Primaries ended. Note, also, that Obama won more of the Republican vote than Kerry did.

    And if you prefer to look at ideology, Obama doubled Kerry's lead among "moderates" and did 30% better among "conservatives".

    Source: CNN exit polls - scroll down to "Vote by Party ID" & "Vote by ideology"
    http://edition.cnn.com/ELECTION/2008/results/polls/#USP00p1
    http://www.cnn.com/ELECTION/2004/pages/results/states/US/P/00/epolls.0.html
     
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2008
  21. Dec 5, 2008 #20

    Gokul43201

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