Wednesday, May 07, 2008

The Wright Situation

One of the important things that came out of last night's primaries is the knowledge that, apparently, Obama would have won with a LANDSLIDE in Indiana, if only the problem with Wright hadn't come up.

Because exit polls show that a strong majority of the people there who voted for Hillary thought the Wright thing was important. And the main people willing to vote for Obama were those who didn't think it was important. And that can mean only one thing: Almost all of them were going to vote for Obama, but it just so happened that this one issue arose and made them vote the way people in their demographic have voted in previous primaries. How unfortunate for him that this controversy arose when it did, huh. He was just about to win these people over.

And what's odd about that is that these happened to be the same people who always vote for Hillary. In fact, a cynic might say that people's opinion of Wright's importance was based upon their decision of who to vote for, and not vice versa. And that people were only "influenced" by the Wright controversy if they already disliked Obama or favored Clinton, and that it was their choice of candidates that prejudiced their thinking on the issue. Or that perhaps it was the reverse, and that the people who liked Obama were prejudiced to ignore the issue. And that perhaps this is how many "controversies" and "big issues" actually play out in the real world, and that the things voters report to pollsters as the "reason" they voted for something is, in actuality, just a rationalization of their beliefs, which are far more abstract than even they realize.

But there's no way this is the case. After all, Beth Fouhy writes for the AP, and she wrote that "Exit polls showed the Wright imbroglio did influence about half the voters in both states as they weighed which candidate to choose." Oddly, the only number which would constitute the "half" she speaks of is the number of people who said the situation with Wright was "important." Yet 30% of Indianians and 41% of North Carolinaians who thought the situation was "important" voted for Obama.

Does this mean that the situation influenced them to vote for Obama, and they liked the controversy? Who knows? Fouhy didn't deign to explain this logic to us and I'm obviously too dumb to understand how that works. But they said it was important, so it's obvious their opinions were influenced in some manner.

Conservatives Heart Hillary

And in case you don't think Fouhy's one sentence on this is convincing enough, I'll cite another unbiased source: Conservative nutjob and Biobrain-stalker Donald Douglas, of the famed American Power blog, who writes "Not only that, Clinton's benefiting from further electoral fallout to Barack Obama from the toxic Jeremiah Wright controversy."

As evidence of this, he cites ABC News, which said that of the 46% of Indianians who thought the Wright issue was important, 70% voted for Hillary. And that means that a full 32% may have been influenced by this issue! Same with North Carolina, where 27% of voters thought it was important and voted for Hillary! How toxic!!

Douglas, in his infinite wisdom, offers advice to Hillary to continue to push negative personal attacks on Obama and his wife as the best course of action. And that makes sense, seeing as how that ABC story he cites said that 65% of people polled thought Hillary's attacks were "unfair," including 40% of the people who voted for her. So let's see, 32% of voters supported Hillary and thought the Wright thing was important, while 26% of voters supported Hillary yet still thought her attacks were unfair. And what's Douglas' sage advice? More personal attacks. Brilliant.

Dishonest, Untrustworthy

Did I mention that Hillary's numbers on being "honest and trustworthy" were low, even in the state she "won", and was at 49% in North Carolina? When near majorities of the people in your own party can't trust you...it's time for more personal attacks on your more popular and trustworthy adversary. Right. What's sad is that if Hillary continues with her quixotic campaign, this is probably the strategy she will take. But that just makes sense, seeing as how she's surrounded herself with Republican-minded advisers who haven't a clue how to run an honest campaign.

But again, the point here is obvious: Wright matters. And we know this because a minority of those polled said it was "important" and voted for Hillary, and those happened to be the same people who always support Hillary over Obama. Sure, some would say that because traditional Obama voters continued to support him that this would indicate that the Wright thing wasn't influential at all, but what would they know?

Sure, that's how the numbers look, but what's the fun in that? The media and conservatives want to continue hammering on this point that seems to have no impact on the election, and by god, they're going to get their impact whether it's real or not!

1 comment:

John of the Dead said...

Plus, 73% of statistics are made up on the spot, and an astonishing 94% of statistics and be twisted in such a way to prove what ever point you want. It's kinda like Bible quotes for math majors.