Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Obama Making Progress in all Demographics

It is looking as if momentum is once again building for Barack Obama in this stretch drive to the Democratic nomination. Not only have there been daily endorsements of superdelegates, a record crowd of 75,000 at a Portland rally, but the latest Gallup poll suggests almost all demographic groups are beginning to come to the realization that he is to be the presidential nominee for Dems. Quoting from the CNN article:

"Sen. Barack Obama’s 16-point lead over Clinton in the latest Gallup daily tracking poll of Democrats and Democratic-leaning voters comes from even higher support among groups that have been supporting him throughout the primary race, and from newfound support among several groups that have backed Clinton.

Obama leads or ties Clinton among women, Easterners, whites, adults with no college education, and Hispanics, with the New York senator’s support now below 50 percent in each group, according to Gallup. Both are backed by 47 percent of white voters surveyed, and Obama is essentially tied with Clinton – 47 percent to 46 percent – among Democrats whose education level is a high school diploma or less.

Clinton’s advantage among women overall seems to have evaporated, with Obama now holding a lead within the survey’s three point margin of error, 49 percent to 46 percent. Hispanics favor Obama over Clinton by 7 percentage points, 51 percent to 44 percent. And Obama now leads among voters in Eastern states by 9 percentage points over Clinton – 52 percent to 43 percent.

Clinton’s standing with whites has fallen by five percentage points during the month of May. With Hispanics, Clinton has lost eight percentage points in the same time period. Clinton’s support with Easterners has fallen by seven percentage points and with women, Clinton has last four percentage points in May. Women age 50 or older is the only major demographic group where a majority, 52 percent, still support the New York senator.

Obama’s support among voters with postgraduate education, voters with monthly incomes of at least $5000, and men – has grown to the point that, he now leads Clinton by a margin of 2-to-1. Among voters 29 or younger, Obama leads Clinton by a margin of nearly 3-to-1."

The expectation tonight is that Sen. Clinton will easily win Kentucky and Sen. Obama will easily win Oregon, meaning a virtual split in delegates once again. Next on the Obama agenda will likely be the continued fight against the endless barrage of complaints and accusations of 'poor foreign policy experience' from the McCain campaign, including the latest that hits Obama for suggesting he would be open to talks with the Cuban government, rather than continue the status quo embargo. I think a difference in this case is worth pointing out - is it good for progress and national security to continue a policy that has been an utter failure for 50 years? Or is it good for progress and national security to try and actually resolve a 50-year dispute with a country that sits tens of miles from the U.S. coastline? It will be interesting to see how the foreign policy debate plays put with the American public, since this is McCain's self-proclaimed strength and top reason for having him serve as President. I like Obama's chances of connecting with the public because of his ability and willingness to think outside the status quo box built by some of the most experienced officials in government, and point out the terrible flaws and failures that have resulted during the Bush years. Much more to come in the next couple of months, to be sure...

Friday, May 16, 2008

Is this the best a GOP leader can do?

Some unusual comments are made during the "silly season" of presidential politicking, but this one is simply poor taste. Baptist preacher and former presidential candidate Mike Huckabee was giving a speech at an NRA convention. Hearing a loud noise and interrupting his speech, Huckabee said: "That was Barack Obama. He just tripped off a chair. He's getting ready to speak and somebody aimed a gun at him and he — he dove for the floor."

Fortunately, it appears almost no one laughed. At least law abiding gun owners don't have the same sense of humor as certain politicians. Assuming Obama is going to win the Democratic nomination, I can only begin to imagine some of the vulgar, off-the-wall comments some in the GOP are going to be using. There are some, both on the left and right (and I suspect more on the right), who are not ready for the first African American president, so perhaps all of us will need to have thick skin as the commentary, jokes, and blatantly stupid accusations (such as Obama being a Muslim, unpatriotic, un-American, elitist man) begin to fly at a more rapid pace.