FL, OH, PA Polls

The new Quinnipiac polls for Florida, Ohio and Pennsylvania are mostly encouraging for John McCain. How can that be? you might ask. McCain trails in all 3 states according to Q. Here's why - Barack Obama has lost ground in these 3 states.

First of all, I do not believe Obama is leading in Florida. In fact, since he is not going to pick Hillary Clinton, I do not think he has a chance in Florida. The crosstabs tell the tale in my opinion. Two key numbers - Obama leads with women NOW 47-42 (not enough, McCain will win men by more than the 47-45 the Q poll is showing.) He will lose women, especially in South Florida, when he does not pick Hillary. McCain leads with white voters 53-39. He will lead by more than that come November, especially if he does not pick Hillary. Obama will not win Florida. More . . .

In Ohio, Q has had Obama ahead always, running counter to many other Ohio polls. But again the crosstabs tell the tale:

Obama gets 47 percent of Ohio women likely voters, to McCain's 44 percent. Men split with 46 percent for Obama and 45 percent for McCain. White voters back McCain 49 - 42 percent, but Obama sweeps black voters 89 - 2 percent. The Democrat also leads 57 - 35 percent among voters 18 to 34 and 48 - 44 percent among voters 35 to 54, while McCain leads 48 - 41 percent among voters over 55.

When Obama does not pick Hillary, he will lose support among women and white voters. He will NOT beat McCain among men in my opinion. Obama will not win Ohio because he will not choose Hillary.

Pennsylvania looks solid for Obama. McCain can not overcome what George Bush has wrought.

Obama still wins the election because he will flip Iowa, New Mexico and Colorado for sure. But there is no reason why it should be this close. His stubborn refusal to pick Hillary Clinton, his insistence in causing political trouble for himself with the VP pick, will make this a closer election than it should be. The political obtuseness on this critical decision is amazing to me.

By Big Tent Democrat, speaking for me only

< Thursday Morning Open Thread | Veepstakes: Obama and Sebelius, Part II >
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    I disagree that PA looks solid for Obama (5.00 / 4) (#5)
    by kempis on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 09:47:13 AM EST
    I live here. Outside of the African-American communities and the academic liberal ones, Obama is a disturbing question mark.

    Don't forget that PA has a tradition of supporting moderate Republicans like Specter and Ridge, and McCain fits that mold in most people's minds. Also many of the affluent suburbs in PA are actually quite conservative. Those suburbs combined forces with the rural areas to send people like Melissa Hart and Rick Santorum to DC....

    I look for the race to be neck-and-neck in PA. McCain has an excellent chance to win this state--if his inept campaign doesn't blow it.

    i think you are closer to right. (5.00 / 4) (#10)
    by TimNCGuy on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 09:54:03 AM EST
    Obama only stayed as close to Clinton in the PA primary as he did because of the weird way the dems allocate their delegates to different districts based on previous performance.  This gave Obama's strong areas of PA greater value than they will have in a general election where 1 vote counts as 1 vote no matter where the vote comes from.

    PA was also post OH (5.00 / 3) (#45)
    by Fabian on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:30:13 AM EST
    so I think the Obama campaign tried harder than they did in the Buckeye state.  Still, even with all that advertising....

    and Obama had (5.00 / 4) (#54)
    by TimNCGuy on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:41:00 AM EST
    a full 6 or 7 weeks for campaigning in PA when nothing else was happening.

    Uh-huh. That too. (5.00 / 3) (#65)
    by Fabian on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:52:25 AM EST
    That's why his performance in PA was less than inspiring.  He had a lot of advantages going into that primary but they weren't enough.

    well to be fair (5.00 / 3) (#69)
    by TimNCGuy on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:56:20 AM EST
    that's when his San Fran comment about gun-toting, bible-beating bigots came out too

    Still 6+ weeks to wow PA (5.00 / 1) (#77)
    by Fabian on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:05:20 AM EST
    and show those rural, working class voters what he could do for them?  Or not.

    As a Dem (5.00 / 3) (#115)
    by RedSox04 on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 12:24:03 PM EST
    I sure am glad that Obama's spending so many of his resources in states like Mississippi and Alabama.  Winning those states will make up for potentialy losing Pennsylvania, Ohio, Florida, Michigan, and Missouri.

    Agreed (5.00 / 1) (#138)
    by BackFromOhio on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 02:26:30 PM EST
    And I believe Hillary won the suburbs.  I lived and worked in Western Philly suburbs for 4 years -- very conservative. In addition, the ardor of the backing Obama had in the primaries among student progressives has diminished.  

    The Philly suburbs are not very conservative (none / 0) (#141)
    by andgarden on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 02:31:07 PM EST
    by the overall standards of the State.

    But in my experience (5.00 / 1) (#143)
    by BackFromOhio on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 02:32:36 PM EST
    the Philly suburbs are far more conservative than, say, NYC suburbs, and often vote Republican.

    Difference between Conservative and Republican (5.00 / 2) (#144)
    by andgarden on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 02:36:16 PM EST
    The collar counties (Montco, Bucks, Delaware) were the epicenter of Pennsylvania's liberal Republicans. Bill Clinton and Ed Rendell mostly won them over, but Arlen Specter can count on them still.

    In 2006 (none / 0) (#186)
    by BackFromOhio on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 05:25:25 PM EST
    they did not vote uniformly Dem

    PA looks OK but not Ohio (none / 0) (#46)
    by ChuckieTomato on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:31:16 AM EST
    according to electoral-vote

    I did two political calls this week. (5.00 / 2) (#51)
    by Fabian on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:38:47 AM EST
    Both the Obama call and the quickie political survey didn't blink when I declared my indifference to the Dem and GOP presidential presumptive nominees.  Like they'd heard it more than once before.

    Just a few?  Sure, a few here, a few there - what matters is the total sum.


    I'll be surprised if Obama wins OH and PA (5.00 / 3) (#61)
    by kempis on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:47:55 AM EST
    I just don't think the cultures and demographics of either state has changed so drastically since 2004, when Bush won Ohio (or kept it close enough for Blackwell's elves to steal it for him) and Kerry just barely won PA.

    I'm not hearing a lot of encouraging words for Obama here on the ground in Western PA. Of course, that's just an anecdotal observation. But my gut and my experience as a resident here for 20+ years tells me that McCain has a better chance of carrying PA (and OH) than Obama does.


    I'd add Michigan to that list (5.00 / 0) (#64)
    by ChuckieTomato on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:49:59 AM EST
    I think McCain has a great chance at winning Michigan

    C-tomato.....hello there...where ya been? (5.00 / 1) (#89)
    by PssttCmere08 on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:19:05 AM EST
    Still following politics I see....nice to see you!

    I knew there was a reason why I missed this board (5.00 / 0) (#102)
    by ChuckieTomato on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:44:45 AM EST
    now I remember. Nice to hear from ya

    huh? talking to me? just kidding! smile! (5.00 / 0) (#150)
    by hellothere on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 02:54:32 PM EST
    I agree (5.00 / 1) (#75)
    by MichaelGale on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:04:36 AM EST
    I do not think Obama will win PA, OH, FL, IN and NC.

    MO might be another (5.00 / 2) (#81)
    by mmc9431 on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:09:31 AM EST
    pipe dream for the Obama camp. McCaskill is lucky her reelection isn't due any time soon. She'd have enough trouble carrying herself let alone delivering MO for Obama.

    i don't see coat tails in these polls. (none / 0) (#151)
    by hellothere on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 02:55:20 PM EST
    Gah! "HAVE" not "HAS"--sorry (none / 0) (#63)
    by kempis on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:48:46 AM EST
    What will be interesting (5.00 / 0) (#7)
    by athyrio on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 09:49:01 AM EST
    is the polls after the Republican 527's wrought their damage after the convention. I agree that Colorado is a long shot as he has been tanking steadily in the polls there.

    The flaw in this logic. . . (5.00 / 0) (#11)
    by LarryInNYC on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 09:56:44 AM EST
    is the belief that Obama will alienate voters by not selecting Clinton as his running mate.  

    In general, I don't think VP choices make a whole heck of a lot of difference.  And I don't think the wider electorate can be judged by the hot house standards of the blogosphere.  Furthermore, if you want to argue about the effect of a Clinton pick / non-pick on the electorate, you can as easily make the argument that Clinton would alienate both independents with whom she still has baggage and lefties who would see a Clinton pick as the last straw in Obama's move to the center.

    If you forecast that McCain will improve his standing among men in Florida it's at least as reasonable that Obama will improve his among women to more closely look like his national polling.

    I remind you that you forecast that the Clinton / Obama split of women and hispanics in the primaries indicated that Obama would have a problem with those voter groups in the general -- a forecast not borne out by the current polling.

    BTW (5.00 / 2) (#17)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:03:21 AM EST
    I did not say Obama could not win women and Latinos and white working class voters because of the primary results _ I said it showed a vulnerability. I think the vulnerability STILL exists.

    Here's a simple thought experiment for you - how would Hillary be doing in FL, OH and PA? Better than Obama?

    THAT was my point.


    You forget (5.00 / 2) (#137)
    by cmugirl on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 02:25:09 PM EST
    Hillary would not be prancing around Europe and would actually be here connecting with voters and she could take anything McCain and the Republicans could dish out (she already has, remember?)

    Besides, McCain already has experience smacking down Obama once before.


    Is that why his Gallup lead (5.00 / 1) (#168)
    by nycstray on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 03:49:27 PM EST
    dropped to 1 today?

    No One Can Know Where Hillary Would Be 'Prancing' (5.00 / 1) (#171)
    by daring grace on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 04:00:37 PM EST
    right now as nominee, but I'm sure she would be running an effective campaign as is Obama who IS (and has been) 'here' connecting with the voters.

    It's McCain who is fumbling.


    blah blah blah (5.00 / 5) (#174)
    by Valhalla on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 04:06:02 PM EST
    more of the loyalty test rhetoric:  "if you cared about the __"  (fill in the blank with puppies/environment/children/kittens).

    I won't vote for Obama because he is below the minimum of what I can support in a candidate.  I don't have very high standards (obviously, since I've voted Dem in every single election for over two decades).  But he doesn't make the cut.

    I won't vote for him, more importantly, because I cannot support the whole laundry list of very undemocratic actions by the DNC and the 'new direction' they are headed in which does not include caring about or representing the base, or democracy, or rules, or really any issue that is important to me.

    The false dichotomy in your argument, which makes it very poor reasoning, is that every person must vote for Obama or McCain.  I can vote for neither.  I will, as Obama has done so  many times on issues important to me, vote 'present'.

    Half the potential electorate stays home on election day every 4 years.  Go pester some of them.


    My parents, who are in their middle 90's and (none / 0) (#206)
    by suzieg on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 06:16:35 AM EST
    die hard, lifelong democrats, are voting for McCain! They are furious at Obama for pitting one generation against another but mostly they believe the country would be better off with the devil they know, McCain, while we are fighting in 2 wars.

    They are put off by all the Obama adulation. They believe their votes should be sought after not taken for granted!  


    Actually (5.00 / 3) (#175)
    by cmugirl on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 04:10:41 PM EST
    I think telling people who have done their homework to vote for Obama, even though it would go against their conscience, is wrong - especially when the only argument is that he's better than McCain.

    This reminds me of votes they have in countries led by dictators who win with 95% of the vote - you must vote for him because you have no choice.


    No One Can Know Where Hillary Would Be 'Prancing' (none / 0) (#172)
    by daring grace on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 04:00:56 PM EST
    right now as nominee, but I'm sure she would be running an effective campaign as is Obama who IS (and has been) 'here' connecting with the voters.

    It's McCain who is fumbling.


    I still think Hillary's concession speech (none / 0) (#19)
    by andgarden on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:05:10 AM EST
    belongs in an Obama ad. Perhaps a closing ad.

    It seems like a bounce on demand for me.


    I disagree with Clinton downsides. (5.00 / 4) (#24)
    by ajain on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:07:34 AM EST
    The idea that Clinton is the monster who will drive both Independants and lefties away is silly. I think compared with all the other choices that are on the table for VP she is among the strongest picks for the left voters. As for independants, I have no clue how big of a problem she has there but she is so strong with the Dem base that it off-sets any loss with independants, plus she is a huge attraction in Arkansas, WV and Kentucky. I think people keep underestamting Hillary's strength. There really is no stronger VP pick. (not that this matters, but I'll bet anything McCain would really far behind if she was the nominee, especially in the Electoral College vote).

    To be clear. . . (5.00 / 0) (#29)
    by LarryInNYC on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:11:31 AM EST
    The idea that Clinton is the monster who will drive both Independants and lefties away is silly.

    I don't think that either argument is true -- that she will draw or repulse a significant number of voters if either chosen or not chosen.

    However, if you want to argue one side of the issue I can make an equally compelling (that is, baseless) argument for the other side.


    Re your last paragraph: (none / 0) (#97)
    by oculus on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:39:18 AM EST
    tell us something we don't know!

    Anecdotal evidence from my opposing AA male counsel:  If Obama picks Clinton as VP, many who still despise "the Clintons" will vote for McCain.  He did acknowledge Hillary Clinton is smarter than Barack Obama, so that's something.


    especially as they (5.00 / 3) (#32)
    by ccpup on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:14:37 AM EST
    have McCain on video saying quite clearly that Hillary would make a wonderful President.

    That would have been a wonderful ad to run during Crunch Time the week before the Election had the DNC actually listened to the Voters and not foisted this Hopey, Changey neophyte on us.


    The polls don't bear out the idea that Clinton (5.00 / 4) (#37)
    by Valhalla on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:21:32 AM EST
    loses him any support -- quite the opposite.  Even with independents, although the effect is less (unsurprisingly) than with Democrats.

    And you missed moderate Repub women (5.00 / 7) (#55)
    by Cream City on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:41:36 AM EST
    who would vote for Clinton.  I know a lot of them, and they liked her a lot.   Repub women were not shunted to an auxiliary in their party from the start, as was done to Dem women in 1920.  And it shows, ever since, as Repub women most often have won the "firsts."  And the moderates often are pro-choice, pro-stem cell research, pro-much more that has left them uncomfortable with the current party.

    Clinton would have brought over a lot of moderates for Obama -- many who won't be as excited by a Kaine, a Sibelius, etc.  But now, we'll never know.


    you keep the lefties in line (5.00 / 1) (#26)
    by TimNCGuy on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:09:08 AM EST
    by threatening them with the supreme court just like they have been trying to do with Clinton supporters.  But, tey wouldn't be able to argue against it since they themselves have been promoting it as the reason to get on board.

    You pick Kaine as VP (5.00 / 4) (#53)
    by ruffian on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:40:24 AM EST
    And the lefties are not so confident that you will pick unambigiously pro-choice judges. It would be a lot harder to keep lefties and Hillary supporters in line with a Kaine opick.

    Yep (none / 0) (#70)
    by kempis on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:56:57 AM EST
    You'd be absolutely astounded how many say they (5.00 / 1) (#72)
    by cawaltz on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:01:54 AM EST
    are waiting on VP choices outside of the political forums.

    How do you know? (none / 0) (#76)
    by Emma on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:04:47 AM EST
    Where do you get info from about this?  Anecedote? Polls?  Just curious.

    I belong to various forums outside of political (5.00 / 2) (#87)
    by cawaltz on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:17:01 AM EST
    ones. This thread on the mommysavers board should prove illuminating.

    It's just an example of what conversations I'm hearing(and participating in).


    Thanks for the reply. (5.00 / 1) (#135)
    by Emma on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 02:19:33 PM EST
    I appreciate it!

    My dad and brother (independents) (5.00 / 2) (#147)
    by nell on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 02:48:52 PM EST
    are in this camp...

    They don't like Obama or McCain. My brother still hasn't decided what to do at all and is waiting for VP choices and my dad and is planning to vote for McCain (experience and all that...), but will still make the final decision depending on who the VP is. If McCain picks a right wing crazy like Jindal or Huckabee, he doesn't know what he will do. By contrast, if Obama picks someone he really likes, such as Hillary or Bayh (don't ask), he also doesn't know what he will do. But if the VP pick isn't someone that he perceives as exceptional in one direction or the other, McCain has his vote.


    Flaw? (none / 0) (#14)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:01:11 AM EST
    It is not a flaw in my logic - rather it is a flaw in my "data." If my "data" is correct, my logic follows.

    You disagree with me on the effect of not picking Hillary. You agree with Kos. Not for the first time, you and Kos are wrong.


    That was needlessly harsh (5.00 / 1) (#31)
    by Jim J on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:13:22 AM EST
    Those are fighting words, comparing someone to Kos. I'd be sparing with them if I were you.

    Hey, no insults! (none / 0) (#21)
    by LarryInNYC on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:05:40 AM EST
    You agree with Kos.

    Your own rules -- no insults!

    The flaw is in your assumption, which I classify as part of the logic of your argument.  I don't disagree with your data.


    If there is a flaw it's in the polls (none / 0) (#56)
    by ChuckieTomato on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:43:31 AM EST
    There is usually a hidden racial element in the voting that doesn't surface in polling. The only question is how large is the percentage.

    Yep. That's why the Obama camp is doing what (none / 0) (#66)
    by CaptainAmerica08 on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:54:17 AM EST
    they are doing with respect to registration. Obama-haters just love to assert the high AA support. But I find it incredible they haven't figured out yet that it's hispanics that they are targeting, and it WILL work because of they have been treated like garbage by the GOP. The O camp also knows that hispanics and latinos have a wide range of different attitudes in background and culture. This is one reason why they will not spend time in FL but will hope for the best there and focus on NV, NM, etc.

    Hispanics not enthusiastic for Obama (5.00 / 1) (#114)
    by catfish on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 12:09:01 PM EST
    They may favor him over McCain (and of course, I speak for all hispanics because I asked one what she thought.)

    One acquaintance noticed at a La Raza appearance Obama took no questions. And McCain took questions but they didn't like McCain anyway.

    With no Hillary as veep, especially someone cool and calm like Sebelius, they may not turn out in higher than average numbers.


    I predict historic AA and white turnout (none / 0) (#74)
    by ChuckieTomato on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:03:10 AM EST
    How do hispanic voters help in MI, PA and Ohio. I think McCain has a pretty good chance of winning all three of those states



    They don't. Well, not as much as they do (5.00 / 1) (#92)
    by CaptainAmerica08 on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:26:57 AM EST
    in NM,NV,and yes, some southern states. That's also what I'm saying too is that hispanics are growing here in the south. Remember those reports of O's "southern strategy"? Well everyone just made the assumption they were talkin about AAs and a small group of whites. The O camp knows that alone isn't gonna win any states in the south. You have to look at which states they are talking about (NC,GA,FL, and you can throw in VA). I'm telling yall and I'll say it again: they are running a stealth campaign. If it doesn't work, it will be because the candidate screws up big time, not the strategy they are executing.

    I hear what you're saying but (none / 0) (#95)
    by ChuckieTomato on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:38:25 AM EST
    Just an example, NC Hispanic population is around 4-5 percent. That translates to around 400k thousand hispanics, most of which are not eligible to vote b/c they are not citizens.

    Bush won NC by 12 and 13 points, or around 400,000 votes.

    Even with a dramatic AA increase, thousands of whites must change their vote or McCain is going to win NC and the rest of the southern states.


    Yep. Just to be clear though I wasn't trying to (5.00 / 0) (#99)
    by CaptainAmerica08 on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:43:27 AM EST
    say your opinion was incorrect, I'm just trying to get across that O is not running on the traditional map and that there seem to be more reasons for that than are given by the MSM. Racial demographics are just ONE piece of the puzzle.

    Yes. Jeralyn posted (none / 0) (#183)
    by derridog on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 05:07:50 PM EST
    NC registration numbers in April. Hispanics and Native Americans together constituted less than 2% of the vote.  AAs were about 20%, and that was with 65,000 new registered AA voters.

    There are lots of colleges in NC but liberal voters are usually outnumbered by Jesse Helms' fans.   Racism would be a factor here. There's no question that many whites won't vote for a black man.  It won't be like the primary, where AAs made up close to 45% of the Democratic voters.  If you have 90% of 45%, you have 40% of the vote going into the election and you only need eleven percent of whites voting for you to win. That's why making such a big deal out of Obama's win in NC was ridiculous. Of course, he was going to win. The only question was by how much. In the general, you will have all those pesky Republicans voting with their conservative Democratic brethren.

    I don't think NC is going to go for Obama.  We'll see.


    I am not predicting anything (5.00 / 2) (#22)
    by catfish on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:06:46 AM EST
    I broke that pledge briefly yesterday, must find a way to undo it.

    Either candidate could win. It's clearly pandering on his part, but McCain has blasted CEO pay, blasted corn subsidies and said we should relax restrictions on sugar ethonol, and this campaign at least, he's been pretty good with women, having more women in high-profile positions in his campaign, even deferring to some as experts in their fields. And yesterday he said Al Gore's renewable energy goals were achievable.

    The Obama campaign is cocky beyond belief, says Blackwater is getting a bad rap, is too trusting of corporations, but that hasn't stopped American voters before. He's been pretty lackluster placing women as high-profile surrogates. But if he picks Sebelius, while I will be disappointed (I see her as Hillary-lite,) regular voters who tune in later might find her likeable.

    New england farmer hate the midwestern (5.00 / 1) (#35)
    by Salo on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:19:42 AM EST
    ethanol subsidy stuff.  The anti ethanol stuff plays well in dairy farm areas.

    Corn or sugar (5.00 / 1) (#60)
    by catfish on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:46:12 AM EST
    I am not advocating Repub McCain, but I was pretty excited to hear him blast corn subsidies (for corn ethanol.) Recall that Obama had big ethanol guys on his staff (Tom Daschle, who is technically NOT a lobbyist somehow) and Obama won Iowa. McCain lost Iowa.

    "Blackwater is getting a bad rap?" (4.00 / 1) (#160)
    by allimom99 on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 03:18:49 PM EST
    They actually said that? I thought I'd heard everything already - just how far to the right does Obama think he can go without losing the REST of the Demoocratic party? Oh wait, it's not about winning for the party, is it?

    He's said before that he sees nothing wrong (1.00 / 0) (#178)
    by derridog on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 04:40:44 PM EST
    with Blackwater.

    The guy is the corporate candidate and the candidate of people like Nadhmi Auchi, the former Saddam moneyman, bazillionaire, criminal (can't set foot in France or he'd be arrested) who lives in London and who sent money to Rezko just before Rezko's wife came up with the cash to help Obama buy his house.  Auchi and his pals are up to their necks in profiteering in Iraq.

    See Evelyn Pringle's writing on this (Opednews.com) .  She says Obama is the guy of these corporate/mob-related crooks and they put him forward because Governor Blagojevich, whom they were going to run for President,  is too tainted by association with Rezko.  She says it's all about money, not party. Both parties want to keep the money spigots open.

    After what has happened in this primary, I'm prepared to believe her.


    If he picks Sebellius, he's going to further piss (4.00 / 1) (#176)
    by derridog on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 04:29:59 PM EST
    off Hillary voters. It will be seen as another shoulder dustoff and imply that all women are interchangeable.

    He will also drive the male voters away who won't vote for a woman. God forbid something should happen to Obama and a "girl" becomes President.

    The rest of the people probably won't care one way or the other, unless she's a really bad candidate. I heard she was sort of boring, but I have nothing to back that up with.


    McCain's ad (3.50 / 2) (#78)
    by Josey on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:07:04 AM EST
    conflating Obama with Britney and Paris is brilliant - leading up to the last night of the Dem Convention that Obama changed at the last minute to accommodate THE ONE's adoring fans.

    Who said this?  "Inflating our tires will help with gas mileage."  You'd think Britney or Paris - right? Look for McCain's next ad to include that Obama goof.

    Watch it here -


    I am not sure why that's funny (5.00 / 1) (#80)
    by CST on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:09:24 AM EST
    You know that inflating tires does help with Gas mileage...

    I would be very surprised if Britney or Paris knew that, or frankly, cared.


    did you watch the clip? (none / 0) (#100)
    by Josey on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:44:03 AM EST
    Obama basically says we won't have to drill for oil if only we inflate our tires and get tune ups.
    Do you believe that?

    More dynamic (5.00 / 3) (#107)
    by mmc9431 on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:54:07 AM EST
    I wish Obama would really grab a hold on the energy issue and run with it. Right now the country is desparate for leadership on this issue. I think the candidate that offers the most feasable plan could win this November. But the public wants a concrete plan of action, not vague generalities.

    He also needs to continually  slam the Republican's and their handling of the Middle East which has more than tripled oil prices.


    Uh oh (5.00 / 8) (#110)
    by cawaltz on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 12:00:43 PM EST
    Vague generalities are the Obama campaign's specialty. Policy positions, not so much. Putting hope and change in the gas tanks just ain't gonna cut it.

    Hope in gas tank (5.00 / 5) (#126)
    by Grace on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 01:19:26 PM EST
    = 0 gallons.

    Change in gas tank (providing you have just under a $1 in change) = 1/4 gallon.  

    Obama energy plan:  "Sputtering our way to energy independence."  


    Go read his website! (5.00 / 5) (#161)
    by Fabian on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 03:19:37 PM EST
    Um, in case you weren't aware - that line is considered a standing joke because so many Obama supporters didn't know policy and couldn't talk policy and were questioned about policy would always refer people to The Website.  So "See the website" is code for "Ignorant Obama supporters".

    LOL (5.00 / 7) (#169)
    by Valhalla on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 03:53:36 PM EST
    I can barely breathe I'm laughing so hard.  This line explains everything we need to know:

    but to hear one policy after the other at a campaign rally is a HUGE bore.

    Dude/Dudette, you are seriously in the wrong place.  This board is all about the policy, all not about the hype.


    Plus the stadium costs a lot (5.00 / 3) (#120)
    by catfish on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 12:51:08 PM EST
    in a time when the DNC is behind in fund raising, they're doing organic food and a green convention. And it's costing extra money for secret service (is that taxpayer money?)

    SS = DHS (5.00 / 2) (#129)
    by Fabian on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 01:44:04 PM EST
    Secret Service is now under the Dept of Homeland Security.  So unless the SS is billing the campaigns for their hours and associated costs, I'd say it's our taxes at work.

    But (none / 0) (#173)
    by tek on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 04:04:33 PM EST
    but, but..."

    It's an Obama whiner!


    Normally (5.00 / 5) (#27)
    by mmc9431 on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:10:17 AM EST
    VP selection doesn't carry that much weight. But this election I think it's going to matter quite a bit to both parties.

    If Obama tries to pick up Rep and Ind and chooses a Kaine type he'll drive a wedge even deeper in the party. At this point I think he needs a true Democrat on the ticket. (No blue dogs allowed)!

    If McCain wants to give Obama a real run for it, he'll go with a moderate and bring back all the Republican's that have turned away from the party because of the neo cons and religous right. This would also give him a stronger footing with Ind.

    Both in the middle (5.00 / 1) (#119)
    by waldenpond on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 12:50:41 PM EST
    Both candidates have moved to the middle.  I expect their VPs to have positions that are to the middle of the stereotypes of their parties.  It will be like a log rolling contest..... they will try to stay on balance in the middle and the other will be trying to knock them off with attacks.  Who falls off and gets dunked is what I am waiting for.

    Well and good (4.66 / 3) (#127)
    by mmc9431 on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 01:20:50 PM EST
    But whose "middle" are we talking about! It seems that the Dem's continually allow the Rep's to define the middle. I would say many of the comments and shifts out of the Obama camp are definitely right of center.

    Couldn't agree more, BTD (5.00 / 8) (#34)
    by progressiveinvolvement on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:17:50 AM EST
    I'll be quoting you on this.  Supposedly, they're spooked by Bill, but I don't buy that.  I also don't think that Hillary conflicts with the message of "change."  Good night, the first serious female candidate for VP is all about change, and in a big way.  (They say these nonsensical things, and some people actually buy it.)

    I think it comes down to this:  They don't want the VP candidate to upstage the candidate.  

    It conflicts with the cult of personality thing.

    Cult of personality (5.00 / 6) (#43)
    by Coral on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:27:18 AM EST
    In my opinion, that is one of Obama's most vulnerable points, and one that the Republicans will exploit effectively.

    I think so too (5.00 / 7) (#49)
    by ruffian on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:37:43 AM EST
    they always go to personality related attacks.  God knows they can't win on the issues.

    but, but, but (5.00 / 8) (#59)
    by TimNCGuy on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:45:55 AM EST
    If Obama is the "Worlds gift to the US" per Chris Matthews and able to restore the rest of the world's confidence in the US per Obama himself, how could Hillary possibly upstage him?

    It must be powerful Kool-Aid when they can hold those two opposing views in their heads at the same time.

    Or, is it that behind the scenes his camp does actually believe that Clinton is the better candidate and would therefore be able to "upstage" him?


    It's about policy specifics not charisma (5.00 / 7) (#73)
    by Emma on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:03:09 AM EST
    Clinton is far too policy specific and wonkish for an Obama/DNC campaign.  Clinton doesn't do hope, she does wonk -- those things are incompatible in an Obama campaign.

    It's why The Nation begging letter is extra laughable.  Bwahahahahahaha.  And they think they're the leaders of the "progressive movement".  They're dumb as dirt.


    well, if it's about (5.00 / 3) (#86)
    by TimNCGuy on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:16:51 AM EST
    policy, Obama should be able to take advantage of her strength there.  throughout the campaign, when asked about policy, he wouldn't have to tell people to go read his web site anymore.  He could just say, go talk to my girl Hillary, she'll explain it for you.

    He could (5.00 / 2) (#136)
    by Emma on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 02:23:09 PM EST
    If he wanted to be about policy.  

    Policy and hope cannot exist together in his campaign.  He's proven it more than once.  Why is that?  Your guess is as good as mine.  


    On the upside (5.00 / 0) (#48)
    by CoralGables on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:35:29 AM EST
    When Dems are resorting to discussing their worries about an election when they are "leading" in Florida, Ohio, and Pennsylvania, it's safe to say it's looking to be a very good year for the Dems across the board.

    As a native Virginian (5.00 / 4) (#52)
    by HenryFTP on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:39:54 AM EST
    I do not understand the Obama campaign's seeming near-obsession with the Old Dominion.

    I am delighted that Virginia has gone purple after so many years of being stubbornly red, particularly in presidential politics. For any of you interested in how Virginia went so red, Garrett Epps' Shad Treatment, one of the best American political roman à clef ever written, explains it all with humor.


    The two key Democratic strongholds in the state are the Northern Virginia suburbs of Washington and the Tidewater region around Hampton Roads. The City of Richmond is a blue island surrounded by a red sea.

    The fact that two prominent Republican members of the House of Representatives, Tom Davis and Frank Wolf, represent Northern Virginia should be a tip-off that even the most reliably blue part of the state isn't all that reliably blue.

    Tidewater is dominated by the Navy, the Armed Forces and the defense industry. It will be a tall order to persuade Tidewater independents to ditch John McCain.

    Mark Warner might have overcome some of these obstacles as Obama's running mate, and would fit the "new politics" theme very well. Tim Kaine is perfectly respectable, but he does not light up an audience (big or small) the way Mark Warner does.

    I think it's pretty wilfully stubborn of the Obama campaign to be so intensely focused on a state where he has inherent weaknesses (the western half of the state is Appalachia) and where the Republicans nominated the one guy (McCain) who could cut the Democratic majorities in Northern Virginia and Tidewater. By contrast, as a Senator from Illinois he should find much easier going in Ohio than would a nominee from the East Coast or the South. The elections of Strickland and Brown suggest just as compelling a blue trend in Ohio as the election of Kaine and Webb in Virginia (particularly since Strickland and Brown are much more mainstream Democrats than Kaine or Webb).

    The Obama team may be arrogant, but they aren't dumb, so there must be something they're seeing in Virginia and Ohio that I'm missing.

    Interesting post. Thank you. :) (5.00 / 0) (#79)
    by kempis on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:08:20 AM EST
    What you say about VA squares with what I've read, which indicates that the confidence that some have regarding Obama's chances there is overblown. I just know that the Webb-"Macaca" contest was a squeaker in 06, which alarmed me. I remember thinking then that VA's purple was still more reddish-purple.

    Regarding Ohio, I think much of the state is still reliably red. The Democrats have made gains there since 2004 largely as a backlash to rampant Republican corruption in the state government--and intense guilt and resentment at being Bush's tipping point in 04.

    But backlashes don't always indicate substantial changes in the electorate's fundamental viewpoint. Ohio is still largely conservative, and McCain is a better "cultural" fit than Obama is outside the large cities. Like PA, it's going to come down to the 'burbs, and that's where Obama's "affluent white" advantage breaks down: the 'burbs may be affluent and white, but they're also fairly conservative.


    Much of the areas Clinton won (5.00 / 0) (#85)
    by MichaelGale on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:14:47 AM EST
    are very patriotic also. Fiercely so.

    And your post proves that you aren't dumb (5.00 / 1) (#82)
    by CaptainAmerica08 on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:10:40 AM EST
    either HenryFTP. I think VA's prospects for Obama are dubious too, but it is becoming clear that Obama is running a stealth campaign. I think they are head-faking, hedging and being coy overall. I also think this about the VP slot (I agree with Jeralyn) Don't get me wrong, they will compete for every vote they can get, but keep in mind I think they are putting info out there to intimidate the McCain camp into making mistakes (like spending more in GOP strongholds).

    Groung game (5.00 / 1) (#145)
    by nell on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 02:41:23 PM EST
    I think the one place where the Obama campaign is really strong is ground game. If places turn into squeakers, like PA and OH were in 2004, their ground game could save them the day...I hear NOTHING about McCain's ground troops...

    I don't know what they are seeing (5.00 / 1) (#83)
    by MichaelGale on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:11:37 AM EST
    but remember, they saw something in GA and MS too.  That disappeared.  Nothing to see there now.

    nice to hear from another VA native (none / 0) (#134)
    by DandyTIger on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 02:18:52 PM EST
    and don't forget when you discuss demo's here, that Charlottesville votes 80% dem and even the surrounding Albemarle votes 60% dem. Truly a blue island in a sea of red. But I agree with you, VA is out of reach for Obama. Hillary definitely could have won VA, but not Obama. Even with Kaine it's not possible. I think the head fake idea mentioned is probably right. It's perhaps more about psyching out the McCain camp than anything. Same for a few other unlikely states.

    And I agree with a few posters above, I think McCain actually is favored to win PA and OH despite some of the polling.


    Weren't other Democratic candidates well (5.00 / 0) (#58)
    by athyrio on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:45:51 AM EST
    ahead in the polls at this point?? There is precious little room now for the effect of any negative campaigning in the future against Obama IMO...and if he really choses Kaine who is anti choice that would be a stake in the heart of female support IMO...

    Kaine is pro-choice (5.00 / 1) (#90)
    by Rashomon66 on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:21:34 AM EST
    Kaine is not anti-choice. Please research this. He is for keeping abortion legal, safe and rare. He personally does not like abortion - but who does? You can be pro-choice and opposed to abortion. Many people are.

    You can put lipstick on a pig (5.00 / 3) (#94)
    by cawaltz on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:34:44 AM EST
    but it is still a pig. He's done nothing to make or encourage abortion to be safe, legal and rare(as of right now there is a challenge on Virginia's particular partial birth law in the courts and news. I won't be voting for him. Women's reproductive rights have been set back enough due to men's personal opinions on abortion.

    Not Entirely (5.00 / 3) (#96)
    by BDB on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:38:38 AM EST
    He's not against restricting abortion, as I understand it, he's just for not overturning Roe v. Wade.  He's yet another Democrat perfectly happy to see it gutted.

    So he's wishy-washy at best on choice.  But, on the up side, he's very good at gay baiting and who doesn't love that?


    Yesterday a Virginian here stated (none / 0) (#105)
    by oculus on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:48:20 AM EST
    Kaine is for parental notification and against "partial-birth" abortion.  Also against embryonic stem cell research.

    I Love This Election! (5.00 / 10) (#112)
    by BDB on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 12:05:11 PM EST
    Nothing like watching "progressives" define the definition of "pro-choice" down.  Pretty soon we'll be left with the right to go to Canada to have an abortion.  Hey, that's still a choice, you should thank the Democrats for protecting that.  Be sure to vote in November!

    I'm sorry, but given that a recent poll showed that 77% of Americans believe abortion should be legal, I'm not very sympathetic to the forces within the party looking to go all "bipartisan" on this issue.  


    I'm with you. Solidly. (none / 0) (#113)
    by oculus on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 12:06:13 PM EST
    That's true ... (5.00 / 1) (#142)
    by Robot Porter on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 02:31:22 PM EST
    he restated his support of parental notification and being against "partial birth" abortion on Charlie Rose last night.

    Can't remember if he said anything about embryonic stem cell research.  But he's spoken against it in the past.

    And he not only opposes gay marriage, but also the right of gay couples to adopt children.


    Perfect VP on McCain's ticket. (none / 0) (#195)
    by oculus on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:55:34 PM EST
    wasn't Dukakis up by (none / 0) (#67)
    by TimNCGuy on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:54:24 AM EST
    about 17 points in the summer?  Or was that immediately after the dem convention?

    How about Salazar (Latino. Colorado) as VP? (5.00 / 0) (#84)
    by laurie on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:12:07 AM EST

    ugh (none / 0) (#152)
    by sj on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 03:01:40 PM EST
    --sj (Colorado, Latino)

    Hillary not considered (5.00 / 1) (#88)
    by Rashomon66 on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:17:59 AM EST
    Obama will not pick Hillary. And his position is not stubborn. Why must he bend to the wishes of [some] Hillary supporters? It is his campaign. And does anyone except Hillary know for certain that she even wants to give up a Senate seat to become VP? Is she interested?

    I agree (5.00 / 1) (#98)
    by TeresaInSnow2 on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:42:56 AM EST
    It's not stubbornness.

    I hope you, in exchange, agree that life-long Democrats who won't vote for Obama aren't voting based on stubbornness either.


    Okay but... (1.00 / 0) (#108)
    by Rashomon66 on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:56:37 AM EST
    If you are a Democrat what is not voting for Obama based on then?
    I would hope they wouldn't then vote for McCain because if they were that really would be stubborn and not really sensible either. That leaves third party candidates who won't win and who we know even less about than Obama. And why would someone take a chance on another Republican Executive branch? How could any Democrat support that?

    Obama doesn't have enough (5.00 / 1) (#133)
    by Grace on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 02:03:51 PM EST
    experience in leadership positions.  

    Obama is a fraud who will sell (1.00 / 0) (#181)
    by derridog on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 04:54:27 PM EST
    all progressive ideals down the river.  I will not vote for him.  If it looks close in NC, I'll vote for McCain. Otherwise, I'll vote for Cynthia McKinney.  If the Green Party gets 5% of the vote, they will be considered a major party.  Maybe the Democrats will sit up and take notice if that happens. No more stolen primaries and no more pushing some unqualified guy down our throats because he and his corporate/mob backers are paying you off.

    His vote on Fisa, faith base initatives, hint on (none / 0) (#205)
    by suzieg on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 06:06:18 AM EST
    abortion restrictions due to mental distress, against public campaign financing, pro death penalty without murder charge, pro gun, hinting at additional wars in Afghanistan/Pakistan/Iran, pro bank and credit card usury, against universal/mandated health care, etc....

    I'm voting for the true progressive, Ralph Nader, if he's on my state ballott, if not, I'm staying home!


    Since we largely vote... (5.00 / 3) (#91)
    by Dadler on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:24:04 AM EST
    ...on utterly insecure, easily hackable equipment, I'd say there's a solid chance cretain states have already been decided, if you get my drift. The right sees this election as between good and evil, period (no mattter how many doubts they have about McCain, Obama is Hussein), and if there has been an election to fix in the past...this one tops it by far.

    We live in complete denial about the security and integrity of our voting equipment and process, and this site, strangely, doesn't discuss it at all.  Odd.

    Meanwhile, over at the offices of Patti (5.00 / 2) (#104)
    by lilburro on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:47:45 AM EST
    Solis Doyle...

    god knows what is going on.

    Well, I'll bet (5.00 / 1) (#191)
    by oldpro on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 09:26:21 PM EST
    Patti doesn't...and she'll be one of the last to know.  Probably hear about the VP selection on the 6 o'clock news along with the rest of us...

    Just look at Rasmussen polls (5.00 / 1) (#125)
    by Prabhata on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 01:12:29 PM EST
    and the story is clear.  The number of undecideds are extremely high, most of them Democrats.  Confirming Gallup, about 6 percent say they will vote for a third party.  Count me in those numbers.  I will never vote Obama.

    More important... (4.75 / 4) (#170)
    by Dawn Davenport on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 03:56:17 PM EST
    ...the number of undecideds has GROWN over the past month--even doubling in some of the state polls. I don't recall this happening in prior elections; once the nominees are chosen, voters usually take sides.

    Voters are facing new doubts about the candidates, or waiting to see the v.p. picks, or both.


    OK! (5.00 / 1) (#130)
    by pmj6 on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 01:47:39 PM EST
    So I guess he's not a shoo-in anymore. But, as BTD noted, it should not be this close. In fact, it should not be close at all! We should be looking at a McGovernesque landslide blowout in reverse!

    I think the "stages of grief" paradigm Obama supporters just love to apply to us Hillary supporters, apparently in vain hope we'll eventually come around because the "stages of grief" model dictates that we do (forgetting the model was developed to describe process of accepting things that one had no power to do anything about--like death) applies to Obama supporters too, but in a different way. "Acceptance" here will mean "acceptance of the self-evident truth Obama is a disastrous nominee". The Nation article pleading with Obama presumably represents "Bargaining", so I guess they are well on their way.

    "Get Over It" (5.00 / 3) (#140)
    by Grace on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 02:30:09 PM EST
    Heh.  Shorthand for "Don't be a bitter knitter"  

    LOL, you're cracking me up n/t (5.00 / 2) (#153)
    by DandyTIger on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 03:02:59 PM EST

    For all the talk of "Get OVER it!" (5.00 / 3) (#159)
    by Fabian on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 03:13:38 PM EST
    Methinks that the people who have the biggest problem is the Obama supporters who just can't comprehend why the rest of us haven't "come to Obama" yet.

    Anchor Steam (5.00 / 1) (#156)
    by Fabian on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 03:10:06 PM EST
    If you are buying.

    Or a jug of Barley's Russian Imperial Stout.  


    me too ;-) (none / 0) (#164)
    by ruffian on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 03:42:03 PM EST
    Bourbon (none / 0) (#200)
    by oldpro on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:18:38 PM EST
    and branchwater, thanks.

    How (5.00 / 0) (#187)
    by Claw on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 06:19:09 PM EST
    In god's name would you know any of this?  I'm fine with holding Obama's feet to the fire when he moves to the right, but you don't know what Obama thinks or feels.  You don't know whether he's "an insecure, arrogant jerk."  Just save the site some bandwidth and write "I hate Obama."

    I think Florida will be closer than 2004 (3.00 / 0) (#1)
    by andgarden on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 09:36:51 AM EST
    because McCain will not win Hispanics--though he will obviously be stronger with them here than in other states. Florida is a state where black voters are not as well registered as they could be. I expect Obama to work on that as well.

    I say Florida is too close to call, and frankly more within reach than Ohio.

    Obama will do worse with white women (5.00 / 4) (#3)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 09:41:48 AM EST
    than Kerry. I think significantly worse.

    No chance for Obama in Florida, because he is ticking off Clinton voters.

    Ohio Obama can win.


    We'll see (5.00 / 0) (#4)
    by andgarden on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 09:44:44 AM EST
    Obviously I wish he would put Hillary on the ticket, but I don't think he can write off the state either way.

    My anecdote is my New York Grandma. Even she is now on board for Obama.


    Does she know Hillary won't be picked? (5.00 / 1) (#9)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 09:52:35 AM EST
    I think everyone knows that (2.00 / 1) (#23)
    by CST on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:06:55 AM EST
    Which is why I don't see those numbers among women going down.  He has shown no indication he will pick her, and plenty that he won't.  Rather, I think if he DOES pick her those numbers will go up, but not vice-versa.

    Most people do not obsessively read (5.00 / 4) (#33)
    by Valhalla on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:15:49 AM EST
    every election-related article/opinion piece and check every poll.

    To us, many things are major indicators that he won't pick Hillary.  But I doubt very much most people are studying them as closely as we.  I think a lot of people will be very surprised when he doesn't pick her.


    definitely surprised (5.00 / 5) (#39)
    by ccpup on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:23:49 AM EST
    and not in a good way.

    And if he DOES pick Sebelius, people will immediately compare her to Hillary and find Sebelius lacking.  Which will, of course, reflect poorly on the ticket, on Obama, on his much vaunted judgment and, perhaps, nip in the bud any impressive bounce he could have gotten with the news.

    When he should be riding high and enjoying the glowing reviews for his VP pick, he'll instead find himself on the defensive explaining why he picked her and not Hillary.

    Not a good place to be as we inch closer and closer to Election Day.


    While Hillary maybe outshines Sebelius (5.00 / 1) (#103)
    by magster on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:45:06 AM EST
    Sebelius has a lot of accomplishments and progressive victories on her resume.  She's better than a lot of the names being floated around.

    Exactly, and KS would (5.00 / 1) (#109)
    by brodie on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 12:00:23 PM EST
    help O in states like OH and PA and FL with her appeal to WCWs and older women.  Overall, KS would net a positive result in areas Dems need for victory, and could obviously help with moderates and WCWs in neighboring or nearby MW states like IA, MI and MO.

    Of course, in all these potential choices, O is faced with ticking off some segment of his base or the more moderate Hillary wing.  Not a single potential Veep I've seen discussed anywhere fails to bring negative criticism, including both Sebelius and Hillary.  

    It's just that, as I coldly and brutally calculate things, KS brings less overall net negatives than any other possible choice, including my primary season favorite HRC.  

    O is probably looking at a mere 5 pt PV victory with your usual White Male Suspect in the #2 slot.  Put someone like the potentially-history making Sebelius in the mix, and I'd expect the size of the victory goes up by 3 pts, maybe more.


    A friend was telling me that her mother and (5.00 / 3) (#68)
    by kempis on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:55:10 AM EST
    sisters (Pennsylvania) said the only way they could vote for Obama is if Hillary is on the ticket. I know them and I believe them. And they weren't talking idly; my friend is a Hillary supporter who is now volunteering, reluctantly, for Obama. She was trying to talk her family into voting for Obama, but they don't trust him, don't like him, feel more secure handing the keys to McCain.

    I wonder how many people will feel the same.


    No... (none / 0) (#148)
    by nell on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 02:49:41 PM EST
    my mom still thinks he will pick Hillary. She is convinced of it.

    Guess not... (none / 0) (#157)
    by CST on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 03:11:10 PM EST
    I hope your mom is right.

    I think so. (none / 0) (#13)
    by andgarden on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 09:59:59 AM EST
    She reads the Times, after all.

    It occurs to me, BTW, that an interesting dark horse VP for Obama would be Chuck Schumer. Too bad he's otherwise occupied.


    It's Tim Kaine (none / 0) (#18)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:04:52 AM EST
    They want to win Virginia as bad as anything.

    Evidently not too much (5.00 / 3) (#71)
    by cawaltz on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:58:59 AM EST
    or he'd be worrying about galvanizing voters like me. Even Webb had to win a district or two out in the boonies to get Allen's seat. I can guarantee if he picks Kaine I will not lift a finger to help their campaign. An anti choicer is a deal breaker. I've seen men erode too much as it is on reproductive rights.

    Ugh (none / 0) (#20)
    by andgarden on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:05:24 AM EST
    Kaine was on (none / 0) (#194)
    by oldpro on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:40:03 PM EST
    Charlie Rose tonight.

    media acknowleged FL was getting a raw deal. That said, it is a Rethug state and Dem operatives probably don't care what goes on there unless they pull off a miracle.

    They should care (5.00 / 1) (#8)
    by andgarden on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 09:50:21 AM EST
    Florida is set to pick up even more electoral votes.

    Florida hispanics vs. southwest hispanics (5.00 / 0) (#62)
    by catfish on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:48:02 AM EST
    I know there's a difference.

    I think (5.00 / 1) (#124)
    by Amiss on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 01:04:23 PM EST
    we have a better chance of getting snow in Florida than Obama getting a win here. When the RBC made that decision, that alienated any chance Obama had here.

    If Hillary were the nominee and chose another AA (1.00 / 0) (#190)
    by jxstorm on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 07:18:02 PM EST
    all hell would break loose!  It would be seen as a slap in the face and would be called racist by the MSM.

    No Sebelius!

    Imagine (none / 0) (#202)
    by oldpro on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:23:03 PM EST
    if she had been nominated and then chose Rahm!

    Yeah...that would fly!


    I agree with you about Florida. I think it's (none / 0) (#2)
    by tigercourse on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 09:38:04 AM EST
    unlikely he will win there. I do think he has a chance at Ohio though. It really depends on the type/quality of their campaigns (duh). I still think Colorado is unlikely. It's McCain's part of the world and Obama is steadily dropping there. The polls have gone from 5 upto 4 up to 3 up to 2 down.

    Hillary will be campaigning in OH, FL & NV (none / 0) (#12)
    by ajain on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 09:57:39 AM EST
    CNN is reporting that she will be there in the fall. I dunno how much that helps but it certainly doesn't hurt him in any of those places.

    I don't know (5.00 / 1) (#16)
    by americanincanada on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:02:18 AM EST
    how much I believe anything CNN says about the Obama campaign anymore. They are so clearly carrying his water these days it is disturbing.

    They're based in Atlanta (5.00 / 0) (#30)
    by catfish on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:11:42 AM EST
    The show "Black in America" (which IS a worthwhile show, this is a "teachable moment" for the country and Soledad OBrien is an actual reporter who does some legwork,) is on five nights a week now. But watching from the west coast, where Asians outnumber blacks by quite a margin, that whole network looks out of touch. Of course, the other two cable channels are white, white and white.

    I find McCain's attack ads to date pretty tepid compared to previous campaigns, but there was Gergen last night shaking his head saying McCain should be ashamed of himself. I think this is starting to back fire (but I suffer ODS) but it's making Obama into this pampered, high-maintenance guy.


    McCain and the Republicans (5.00 / 7) (#36)
    by ccpup on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:20:15 AM EST
    aren't going to bring out the big guns attack ad-wise until Obama is the Official Nominee.  It makes no sense to go on a full-frontal assault when people aren't yet fully tuning in to the race like they will in September, October and, of course, the first week of November.

    That's why these tepid poll numbers should be worrisome for the Dems.  If these numbers hold -- and there's no reason to think they'll drastically move one way or the other in the foreseeable future --, Obama doesn't have that far to drop before he's in the political danger zone.  

    And, when they DO bring out the big guns, Obama WILL drop.  And that will be the story blasted 24/7 by our darling Media:  how McCain staged a stunning comeback against a well-funded, immensely popular Rock Star opponent.  Classic David beats Goliath.  And a story the American Public loves to witness time and time again.


    Yeah it's like (5.00 / 4) (#42)
    by Salo on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:26:55 AM EST
    Boudicca waiting for the roman legions to hack into you in the same old way they did to the estruscans, carthaginians, Spaniards, egyptians, greeks, pontians, anatolians, judaeans, libyans,  illyrians, dacians, gauls, Mondalians, Dukakisians, Govenians and expecting that this time it'll be different because this time we are guarded by druid magic.  yes sirree, druid magic.

    Ha. (none / 0) (#101)
    by oculus on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:44:15 AM EST
    It's funny how the black "thing" (5.00 / 1) (#38)
    by Salo on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:22:33 AM EST
    is now essentially Southern and Northern Atlantic.   The West Coast and South West...utterly different Pacific rim character.

    Midwest too (5.00 / 1) (#41)
    by CST on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:25:45 AM EST
    One of the things I was most surprised by when I lived in the midwest was the lack of any other races besides black/white.

    St Louis is a case in point (5.00 / 1) (#44)
    by Salo on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:27:36 AM EST
    after living in cal I almost felt like that was a time warp into the 1950s.

    Midwest increasingly Hispanic (5.00 / 1) (#57)
    by Cream City on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:45:43 AM EST
    now.  Check the census data.  It's just that they're spread out, with as many outside big cities as in them.  But they're a strong presence in some of our big cities, like mine, and in some rural areas.

    And Asians are the fastest-growing group in parts of the Midwest -- still small but definitely a presence in parts.  Note that the three largest Hmong states are: California, Minnesota, Wisconsin. . . .


    Gergen is beginning (5.00 / 7) (#40)
    by TimNCGuy on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:24:13 AM EST
    to sound like he thinks the only valid move for McCain would be to endorse Obama and step out of the way.  Anything else and Gergen calls it unfair or childish.  It's beginning to sound like the calls for Hillary to drop out of the race or at least to stop actually campaigning AGAINST the opponent.

    Gergen is a shill (5.00 / 2) (#149)
    by nell on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 02:53:29 PM EST
    I have mentioned this here before, but shortly after Obama's FISA flip and flop, Gergen was defending him like crazy on CNN and he actually said that Obama has been "fighting" (yeah right, the only thing Obama fights for is getting his competition knocked off the ballot) for privacy rights for 30 or 40 years. Seriously, he said that with a totally straight face, and no one pointed out that his statement could not POSSIBLY be true...

    Obama has been fighting for your privacy rights since he was between the ages of 7 and 17....

    Who knew.


    I agree (5.00 / 2) (#50)
    by americanincanada on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:38:46 AM EST
    I live in the Pacific Northwest, on Vancouver Island, just 20 miles from Seattle by water. Comments from people here in our travels seem to be that CNN is out of touch because like you said, Asians greatly outnumber AAs here. After the Asian population would be east indian then others, long before AAs even factored in. From what little research I have seen the Black in America special, which I agree has been fascinating, has lower ratings here than in any other part of the country.

    Not only that but CNN seems to make more excuses for Obama than MSNBC these days. It's really embarrassing. Gergen is one of the worst.


    Umm...I live across (none / 0) (#196)
    by oldpro on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:58:45 PM EST
    the Straits from you on the Olympic Peninsula...hello neighbor!

    I watched the entire Black in America programming and didn't think it was that good overall.  Not in a league with PBS' Eyes on the Prize.  Kept wondering, as I said in another thread, what Hispanics thought about it...whether they watched any or not, they could hardly miss the endless promotions and repeat, repeat, repeat...

    When will we see a Hispanics in America, Asians in Ameria, even Native Americans in America?

    I thought it was promotional and tedious and slightly whiney (as in the story of the father who had to move because his apartment was going condo...that wasn't a 'black experience!'  That happened here in my little small town and the low-income folks all had to move (over 100 families) and not one was/is black...or even a minority).

    Anyway...could be backlash on some of this over the top favoring of the AA candidate.  It all adds up to a perception...not all good.


    Oh, he's LAME alright, which is why Obama should b (none / 0) (#165)
    by allimom99 on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 03:42:12 PM EST
    worried - this of ALL years, after 8 years of Bush and a lousy economy, the Democratic candidate should be a shoo-in! Unfortunately, the  DNC, in its infinite wisdom, has seen fit with another candidate who is perfectly happy to cave to the R position if he thinks it will help him win his next electoral prize. This is a guy who is famously more interested in running for office than actually serving the public interest. Just what we need (snark).

    I can't help feeling like many voters might be more enthusiastic about a candidate who actually stands for something consistently - I know I would. Seeing as how I have yet to see a position of Obama's that he's not willing to bargain with, I will not hold my nose and support him. I will concentrate on the downticket and seek out REAL Democrats.


    Wonder if that will even hurt (none / 0) (#25)
    by catfish on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:07:57 AM EST
    they'll see her and wonder - why didn't he pick her for veep?

    And so it continues (none / 0) (#15)
    by TheRealFrank on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:02:05 AM EST
    The bad performance of the Obama campaign since he became the presumptive nominee.

    I saw one encouraging sign: an Obama ad replying to the "Obama causes high oil prices". So maybe the Obama campaign finally got their act together.

    he has to tread carefully here (5.00 / 6) (#28)
    by ccpup on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:10:34 AM EST
    Obama did, after all, vote for Bush's Energy Bill whereas McCain (and Hillary, btw) didn't.  If Obama portrays himself as somehow innocent in all this, you can be sure McCain will respond with that vote and the repercussions (eg. tax breaks for oil companies) of that vote.

    Obama does not need a response ad from McCain detailing yet another flip-flop right now.


    If he can win without Clinton (none / 0) (#47)
    by ruffian on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:34:23 AM EST
    he doesn't care if it's closer than it needed to be. If a larger mandate means he is stuck with what he calls 'old-style Washington politics' it does not seem to be worth it to him. He'd rahter have a fresh start with a smaller mandate.

    I personally am not nearly as optimistic about picking up the states in west.  I think he needs to guarantee those victories in PA and Ohio, and Hillary as VP would do that.

    I also think many people who have not paid much attention are asusming Hillary will be on the ticket.  When they wake up after Labor Day and find Tim Kaine or Kathleen Sebelius they are going to question his judgement. Like I will.

    Futurology & elections. (none / 0) (#106)
    by wurman on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:50:52 AM EST
    The ancient Romans often slaughtered small animals & examined the entrails to prognosticate future events of importance.

    The Greeks frequently used oracles.

    The Scandinavian peoples would cast small wood chips marked with magic symbols, runes, & derive a forecast.

    Native Americans often would cast odd-shaped bones & sticks & produce a reading from the patterns.

    Modern North Americans use opinion polls.

    In my non-polled opinion, the Romans, the Scandinavians, & the Native Americans had much the better of it.

    Jeez, wurman.... (none / 0) (#197)
    by oldpro on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:04:50 PM EST
    ....talk about your old-style politics!

    Get with the program!


    Win FL but lose OH (none / 0) (#111)
    by cannondaddy on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 12:05:00 PM EST
    New voter regisitrations in FL favor Democrats over 5-1.

    that's before the repug (none / 0) (#122)
    by TimNCGuy on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 12:59:23 PM EST
    sec of state goes in and purges the rolls again.

    Disagree. The Repugs will be more than happy to (none / 0) (#167)
    by allimom99 on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 03:47:20 PM EST
    remind Floridians that Obama fought to discount their votes. However you see the result, this WILL be in the mix.

    But I do agree with you on Ohio. I'm an OSU alum from the East Coast, and Ohioans view on the photo ops and self-promotion will NOT be favorable. It's a solidly working class state which doesn't suffers fools or snobs gladly.


    Irony (none / 0) (#117)
    by fctchekr on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 12:24:25 PM EST
    With a consistent message
    GWB pulled from many disparate voting blocks as the candidate who was like us, who we could relate to..who could unite us, something BO has tried to emulate.

    In 2008 the only way to win is to make it about running against GWB. The irony is that BO's claim to change things and unite us is about as credible as GWB's promises 8 yrs ago..

    New Gallup Poll today (none / 0) (#121)
    by TimNCGuy on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 12:58:31 PM EST
    That BIG 9 point lead that Obama had on Sunday that set everyone all a "twitter" with excitement is down to 1 point today.

    It has been a steady decline everyday this week.

    The USA Today / Gallup poll from earlier this week showing McCain up by 4 doesn't look quite so unlikely after all now.

    actually I don't support either candidate (5.00 / 4) (#131)
    by TimNCGuy on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 01:51:06 PM EST
    I believe that McCain is qualified to be president.  But, I don't agree with him on many policy positions.

    I don't believe that Obama is even qualified to be president.  I would rather not see Obama win because, in addition to his lack of qualifications, I don't want to see his campaign tactics during the primary rewarded and I don't want to see the DNC rewarded for their behavior.

    If you, and many others, don't want people to hold grudges, then why aren't you and the rest of the party doing something about it?  As a party, let's finally admit that sexism did play a role in the primary and that Obama benefitted from it and participated in it and the rest of the party did nothing to address it.  As a party, let's do the same with all the charges of race-baiting.  Let's admit that there were some statements made by the Clinton camp or their supporters that could have been interpreted as racial.  But, at the same time let's also admit that many of the statements that were interpreted in that way were deliberately MIS-interpreted for the benefit of Obama and that the Obama campaign participated in that as well right from the beginning with the "fairytale" comment being used by Michelle Obama and Donna Brazile.  It is all coming back again as Obama supporters are out there now charging McCain with race-baiting via the Paris Hilton commercial when tere is nothing racial about that at all.  If people are looking so hard to find racism that all they see is white woman and black man instead of no-talent celebrity and inexperienced empty-suit, then there is something wrong with the viewer, not the commercial.

    Am I for something?  Yes, I am.  I'm for fair media coverage for all candidates no matter who I do or don't support.  When the big 9 point lead got mega coverage all over Sunday and Monday.  I was fine with that.  Well, except for the fact that on Monday they were still reporting the lead as 9 points when the new poll for Monday had come out and it had dropped to 8.  Now, where has been all the coverage of the steady decline in the lead since Sunday?  Nowhere to be found.  Where was all the coverage of the poll result showing McCain with a 4 point lead?  It was dismissed out of hand even though the 9 point lead was automatically believed.


    Yes. I was waiting to see if the (none / 0) (#184)
    by derridog on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 05:20:52 PM EST
    MSM would be still be in the tank for Obama after they knocked HIllary out of the race.  I figured there were two options:  1) the corrupt corporate creeps were either setting Obama up so that they could turn on him and elect McCain or, more likely 1) Obama is the go along to get along, stand for nothing candidate they want and the fix is in.  

    Sorry to be so cynical, but when the same people who brought us GW Bush and the Iraq war are pushing one candidate as strongly as they are pushing Obama, it's time to get worried. They will take over the Democratic Party just as they have taken over the Republican one. Obama will sell us out.

    I just hope they don't fix the voting machines again. Maybe that's why Obama is so seemingly overconfident and isn't worried about throwing us under the bus even before the primary.


    wow, quite a reaction for just pointing out polls (4.00 / 1) (#158)
    by DandyTIger on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 03:11:22 PM EST
    All he did was point out the polls and how they show some problems for Obama. No judgement there, just the polls. Your reaction to that is interesting.

    it looks very odd now (none / 0) (#182)
    by TimNCGuy on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 04:59:12 PM EST
    because his over reaction to my poll post seems to have been deleted.  lol

    I Wonder About the Gallup Effect (4.00 / 1) (#166)
    by BDB on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 03:46:27 PM EST
    During the primaries, IIRC, Obama would do very well in the Gallup tracking over the weekends, but in the week Clinton did better.  So almost every week we had the same narrative - if it was Monday, Obama was way up.  If it was Friday, Clinton had reversed things.  Rinse.  Repeat.  

    I wonder if they have the same thing for their GE polling - Obama doing better over the weekends and McCain during the week?


    Well, ummm (none / 0) (#198)
    by oldpro on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:12:04 PM EST
    when Gallup called me Sunday night I said I wouldn't vote for either one of them, so I can't take much credit for the unbump.

    BTD, what's your take... (none / 0) (#132)
    by mike in dc on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 01:58:33 PM EST
    ...on what votes Obama loses by picking Hillary Clinton as VP?  What's that tradeoff?  You must think it's less than 1:1 since you're still boosting her as VP.  I just wonder how many and which votes you think he'll lose by picking her.  

    Well, according to Lanny and the polls he (none / 0) (#180)
    by Valhalla on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 04:47:43 PM EST
    cites in his last-ditch pitch to put Clinton on the ticket, there's no effect among Republicans in putting Clinton on the ticket.  The idea that she'll bring out the (R) base seems to be a myth.  (which accords with the Ras poll 2 weeks ago showing she still outpolls Obama against McCain).

    So -- Clinton = big advantage among Dems, a smaller but still significant advantage among Indies, and no diff to the big bad ravening Repub hordes.

    I think the whole riff that Clinton would energize the Repub base was always largely mythical, but it was also a myth aggressively propagated by Obama because it fit his 'I'm Everybody's Friend!' campaign theme.  While certainly true that Clinton energizes Repub talking heads, and now the punditocracy and netrootz, seems that they're just not that in touch with the general populace after all.


    The myth is still (5.00 / 1) (#199)
    by oldpro on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:16:51 PM EST
    being propagated by the R talking heads even today.  They are determined NOT to have to run against a Clinton...and it appears Obama, in the spirit of unity, is going to accommodate them.

    That may cost him the election.


    Seriously, though...I doubt the choice is up to him.  The 'campaign' will tell him who to pick and it won't be Hillary.  Getting rid of the Clintons was the whole point in the Dem establishment drafting him, after all.  It would defeat their whole purpose to have her in the inner sanctum.


    I don't expect him (none / 0) (#139)
    by kredwyn on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 02:29:54 PM EST
    to flip CO.

    A lot of people here are going to look: (none / 0) (#177)
    by Sensatus on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 04:33:03 PM EST
    - foolish when Obama rolls a landslide over McGrouchy.

    Yeah. You just keep thinking that (5.00 / 0) (#185)
    by derridog on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 05:24:06 PM EST
    thought.  Good luck with that.

    Or vice versa. (none / 0) (#201)
    by oldpro on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 11:21:25 PM EST
    swing states (none / 0) (#192)
    by Miri on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:14:30 PM EST
    Forget the polls.

    Big swing states that went to Hillary during the primaries, Ohio, Michigan, Penn. Florida are all going to McCain.

    The polls this early are meaningless. You have to look at the trends.

    Obama lost these states during the primaries, when the media was cheering him on, declaring him a Messiah and trashing the Clintons.

    Reagan Democrats went for Hillary during the primaries. They will go for McCain in November.

    Meaningless (none / 0) (#193)
    by Miri on Thu Jul 31, 2008 at 10:26:36 PM EST
    "Hillary will be campaigning in OH, FL & NV"

    It won't make any difference.

    People don't vote for who is campaigning with who.

    They don't even vote for the VP candidate.

    Nobody can help Obama in these states. He is going to lose and lose big.

    Hillary could knock on doors personally and beg her voters to support Obama. It won't make a difference.

    At the end voters are faced with a stark choice between two candidates and they make a decision.

    It makes no difference if Hillary or Springsteen or Bush or whomever campaigned for a candidate.

    MICHIGAN (none / 0) (#203)
    by jxstorm on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 03:44:34 AM EST
    BTD, Could Obama win if he loses Ohio, Florida, and Michigan?  Strickland basically said Obama can't win Ohio!  I think taking 4 of Hillary's delegates might hurt him!

    I expect the major flop (none / 0) (#204)
    by weltec2 on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 03:56:39 AM EST
    to be the college kids. Obama wooed them and won them in the primaries by the millions. They won him places where almost no one else voted Demo. But time has passed and not all these college kids are that stupid. Word has spread that Obama is not all he professed to be. It's not loud, but it's out there. I think Obama is going to be in for a biiig surprise when it comes to the electoral college.

    College Kids??!! Don't make me laugh!!! (none / 0) (#208)
    by nclblows on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 08:34:50 AM EST
    I am in the Philly suburbs, in the county that went Red.  My husband teaches at the largest state u in PA.  There were 1000 democrats registered to vote on campus, where they had the polls.

    437 showed up.  And Obama was even on campus.....so much for hope and change.

    PA loved Bill Clinton, and without a Clinton on the ticket, they will go McCain.  Not having her is a slap in the face to the voters here.  I know, I worked for Hillary's campaign here and I know what I heard people saying.  They're still saying it.  It's just that the media and Obama's campaign aren't listening.


    One other thing (none / 0) (#209)
    by nclblows on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 08:35:39 AM EST
    About those 437 students, they were split about 50/50 for the candidates....

    PA = NIMBY (none / 0) (#207)
    by nclblows on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 08:23:56 AM EST
    I also live in PA, and if Obama doesn't pick Hillary or Biden for his VP, he won't win PA.  If Hillary were the candidate, she would win no matter who she picked for VP.

    It's a red state in blue clothes, people don't vote Party, they vote Person.  Whoever described it as Philly & Pittsburgh with Alabama in between is absolutely right.  It's no joke and it's not funny.  The racism in the rural areas is blatant and they are PROUD of their ignorance.