Saturday, 8 March 2008

Barack Obama can't win in Democrat strongholds?

A current line of attack coming from the Clinton campaign is Barack Obama's alleged limited appeal in states that are traditionally Democratic, i.e . the base. An article in the Washington Post today elucidates this argument. I have done an analysis on whether this is, in fact, true. Looking at the results from 2004 and the results so far in terms of delegate count, it is possible to calculate how each candidate has performed up to this point. It is pointless looking at popular vote when some states have primaries and some caucuses- I'm afraid it's apples and oranges whatever the Clinton campaign may say.

In the 17 states won by the Democrats in 2004 (where there have been primaries or caucuses so far), the results are:

Barack Obama 11
Hillary Clinton 5
Tie 1

In terms of total pledged delegates the results are as follows:

Barack Obama 737
Hillary Clinton 688

Obama ahead by 49.

So the Clinton argument is a nonsense it would seem. Barack Obama performs better than Clinton in states that were Democrat in 2004. Her campaign makes the point about how she has more appeal overall amongst white, low income, middle class, Democrats, women and Latinos. But why are these groups considered the Democrat base while African Americans, educated, middle class voters etc not considered part of the base? The reality is that both candidates have different appeals to different groups. But Obama has greater appeal with independent or Republican voters. My view is that Obama's case is stronger in this particular fracas.

So when Rep Frank Pallone Jr says, "A lot of states [Obama's] winning are states that we are not going to win in November," he is presenting a very distorted picture. Obama is also winning more states that are the Democratic firewall. Oh, and he's also winning swing states such as Virginia and Missouri.

No comments:

Post a Comment