Thursday, November 20, 2008

What Happened - 2

[not Obama voters]

It is considered a truism that the election of Barack Obama as President of the United States is a big political and social change.

It isn't.

I saw a statistic that white people voted for McCain by 55% to 45%, white men 56% to 44%. Even more tellingly white Protestants voted for McCain 65% to 35%. We can assume that white Protestant men voted for McCain 66% to 34% -- two to one.

A hundred years ago white Protestant men were the only people in the country who voted. The enfranchisement of women, of blacks, and the arrival of Jews, Catholics, and Asians has changed greatly who votes in the United States. The election of Barack Obama is not the change. It reflects the changes that have been accumulating for a century. The election of Obama is not the change -- it is the result of the changes.

There are places where the whole population is white and Protestant -- Utah, Idaho, the Dakotas, Wyoming, Oklahoma, Alaska. Western Colorado. Those places all voted for McCain roughly two to one.

Curiously there are other places that are also white and Protestant -- Maine, Oregon, Iowa, New Hampshire -- that voted for Obama. So even that reasoning doesn't work.

Another argument is that states with big cities voted for Obama, rural states did not. That works for Oregon and Nevada but not for Maine or Utah.


  1. Anonymous10:44 PM

    Another change was that black folk actually got out and voted!
    They overwhelmingly voted skin color and not issues. 96% blacks voted for Obama and 4% for McCain.
    But then again, it wasn't about race now, was it!

  2. Anonymous is right. Obama's strategy was to run on race to blacks and be outraged if anybody mentioned race to whites. And he got away with it! Because the press were complete toadies about it. Remember last spring when Bill Clinton had the temerity to mention that Jesse Jackson had also won the South Carolina primary? The press lit into him as a racist for so much as mentioning even by implication that blacks were voting for Obama in excess of 90%.

    Obama wound up being black if you were black, and 'how dare you mention it' if you were white.