Saturday, September 20, 2008

Race Matters.

What happens when the party that has portrayed itself as a champion for civil rights, diversity and other issues of import to African-Americans, does not close the deal for Barack Obama? This is a storyline yet to be explored in the general election scenario.

What happens if rust-belt and rural democratic strongholds perform considerably poorer than the past two elections? I predict a disastrous post-election backlash from people of color, young people and the left wing of the party. What began as a slam dunk for the democrats could very well turn into the worst implosion down the stretch since the 2007 NY Mets.

Today, a poll came out suggesting that up to 1 in 3 White Democrats may not vote for Obama based on racial bias. Here is a sample of the results:

"Racial views steer some white Dems away from Obama,” By Ron Fournier and Trevor Tompson: “Deep-seated racial misgivings could cost Barack Obama the White House if the election is close, according to an AP-Yahoo! News poll that found one-third of white Democrats harbor negative views toward blacks … The poll suggests that the percentage of voters who may turn away from Obama because of his race could easily be larger than the final difference between the candidates in 2004 — about two and one-half percentage points. …

“More than a third of all white Democrats and independents — voters Obama can't win the White House without — agreed with at least one negative adjective about blacks, according to the survey, and they are significantly less likely to vote for Obama than those who don't have such views."

For many people this is not a revelation, but a validation of their concerns, fears and frustrations about race in America. We'll see how far this country has come on November 4th.

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