Saturday, January 26, 2008

Live-blogging SC poll results
Obama wins plurality of young white SC voters

In the three-way contest between John Edwards, Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, the O-man won 49 percent of white voters in the 18-29 age group. This is good news because it shows the limits of racializing the campaign.

Another interesting stat: Obama and Clinton won virtually equal numbers of white, male voters. Will provide those numbers as they become available.

And although the two white candidates won greater percentages of the white vote than did Obama, he won a good 15 percent more of the white vote than the 10 percent the polls had suggested he would won. And Obama's 24 percent total of the white vote come close to Edwards' 29 percent. Hillary Clinton won 36 percent of the white vote, mostly from older white women.

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1 comment:

nrglaw said...

There was a lot of focus on one statistic leading up to the SC primary, namely that Black Democrats represented 52% of the state's democrats. That statistic seems have gotten forgotten since the Obama victory. Its clearly still very relevant, however.

I understand that Obama won 80% (my son says 82)of black democratic voters, which would account for 40% out of the total of 55% he polled. In the 18-29 year old group, he took 49--a push at best. Overall, he polled only 25% of the white vote. Apparently, the Latino vote was not very significant, because it isn't even mentioned in any of the MSM coverage of the results. This is a group where Hillary has done well.

So I have two points. First, the racial demographic in SC is unusual--other than the District of Columbia (at 60%), only two states have higher black populations by percentage--MS and LA. The largest state to come close to the SC percentage is MD. Generally, other states don't even come close. Of these demographics, presidential victories are not made. I am not echoing Bill Clinton's Jesse Jackson remark, but these are simple numbers that suggest that the SC racial demographic is much more different from other states than most folks realize. The numbers spell problems for Obama in the General Election if he is not pulling much better from white voters overall, even he is taking 50-60% of the non-black 18-29 year old group.

Four examples make the point more clearly: in CA, pulling 80% of the total statewide black population would only add 5.6% to Obama's vote total, assuming equal turnout across the board; in NY, it adds 12.1%; in Ohio, 8%; and in MI, 11.2%. This is miles away from the 40% figure in SC.

My second point is only that the SC news will really not have much meaning until the FL primary, because there is a very good chance that Obama will suffer the same kind of crushing defeat there that he administered to Hillary in SC. A big defeat in FL (which is what the polls are predicting) will likely overshadow a big win in SC.

I am skeptical that he will get much of a pop in FL from his win in SC.