Skip to main content

Beginning with the Potomac primaries, a trend emerged: Hillary Clinton posted overwhelming victories across the Appalachian region.  The trend continued through the Ohio and Pennsylvania primaries.  

The media bloviators have lapped up the silliness from the Clinton campaign that Obama has a "white working class problem."  If that were true, we would see the evidence in the election results, not just in the exit polls.  I am not sanguine about racism in America; racism permeates almost every facet of life around Detroit, my home town.  There are some voters who will never vote for a black man.  But most of those people who can not get beyond a person's race are Republicans.  I don't believe Obama "transcends race," whatever that's supposed to mean.  Few people don't notice or think about his race.  But most swing voters who could succumb to veiled racial appeals are comfortable voting for this particular Black man.  

Furthermore, many of the voters currently supporting Hillary Clinton simply prefer her to Obama.  Until the campaign turned more contentious over the last few months, most Clinton voters, according to the polls, were fine with supporting Obama.  I don't think recent polls that show Clinton supporters unwilling to support Obama are a good indicator of how they will vote in November.  They won't vote for McCain, and--especially if Hillary Clinton eventually rediscovers some graciousness--they will support Obama.

I don't believe Obama has a significant "race problem."  However, I do believe that he has and will continue to have a problem with some white voters who are clustered mostly in Appalachia.  To see if there was a good visual representation, I enlisted the help of Kossack meng bomin, who's created a bunch of really excellent maps (such as this  outstanding series of maps showing the evolution of the Democratic primary vote from January through last week).

First, let's define how we'll be using "Appalachia."  In the 1960's, one out of three people in Appalachia   lived poverty, per capita income was 23% lower than the national average, and the region was rapidly losing population.  In 1963 the Appalachian Regional Commission was created by Congress and President Kennedy to address the problems in the area highlighted in the map.  Since the 1960's counties near Atlanta, Huntsville AL and Pittsburgh have become wealthier much more developed.  But much of the region remains well below national standards in most measures of economic and social well-being.

The ethnic and cultural character of this part of the country has been more static since the 19th century than anyplace in America.  Outside of some of the new growth areas north of Atlanta or Huntsville, or in some of the college towns, most of the people in Appalachia trace their heritage back to immigrants from the borderlands of Northern Britain who began settling the region over 200 years ago.  Outside of the Northern part of Appalachia—Pennsylvania in particular—relatively few Eastern or Southern Europeans from the great waves of immigration that started in the 1880's have moved in to the area.  It's the most homogeneous region in America.  The region is home to few Catholics, and is heavily Baptist and Methodist.  

In the 19th century, migrants from Appalachia moved west.  People from Appalachia settled and put their stamp on the Ozark region of Missouri and Arkansas, on Okalahoma and the southern Plains, on North Texas, and eventually they were a big part of the initial growth of Southern California.  

First, to see if Obama has a "problem" with white voters, it's worth looking at where he's performed well.  Not surprisingly, he's done well in Northern cities and southern rural areas with very large populations of African Americans.  But his appeal is not limited to African-Americans and higher-income, highly-educated whites.  

[click on maps for greater detail]

Counties where Obama won at least 55% of the vote in green:

Counties where Obama won at least 65% of the vote in green:

As we see, his appeal is not geographically limited.

But if he has a serious "problem" with white voters, we would see it in numerous regions across the country.  We do not see that.  So where do we see Clinton doing well, and where do we see her racking up big wins?

Counties where Clinton won at least 55% of the vote in purple:

Counties where Clinton won at least 65% of the vote in purple:

Clinton, like Obama, has posted solid wins (55% and up) in many different parts of the country.  But her biggest wins--the places where she beat Obama by margins of 2 to 1 or better--have come almost exclusively in Appalachia or in areas originally settled by Appalachian migrants that remain relatively homogeneous compared to the rest of the country.

How do these results track with the distribution of people based on religious affiliation?  Let me be clear: I am NOT suggesting that there are religious reasons to explain why Clinton or Obama might do better or worse with Baptists or Methodists.  Rather, religious affiliation, which is highly correlated with the denominational affiliation of one's parents, is an indicator of family background and regional heritage.  I am not making a strong causal argument, but noting the correlation between the heritage of voters in Appalachia who have been favoring Clinton by margins of better than 2 to 1 and those voting the same way in other parts of the country:

Distribution of Baptists by county:

Distribution of Methodists by county:

What does this mean going forward?  Well, first of all, there's no reason to expect that Obama will do well in West Virginia or Kentucky.  The counties surrounding both states have gone overwhelmingly for Clinton, so it would be extraordinary if Clinton didn't post big wins in both states.  

The other thing demonstrated by these maps is a strong regional distribution of white voters seemingly disinclined to vote for Obama.  I'll try to address some of the reasons for this tendency in future posts.  In the meantime, it would be great if pundits and politicos would recognize and acknowledge that race doesn't appear to have been much of a hindrance for Obama in the Democratic primaries, except, it appears, in Appalachia and in some regions where descendants of Appalachian migrants settled, such as the Ozarks, Oklahoma, and some isolated rural communities on the Plains.  Obama doesn't appear to have much of a problem with white voters.  But it seems quite likely Appalachia has a bit of an Obama problem.  

Originally posted to Daily Kos on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:30 PM PDT.

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

  •  FWIW... (22+ / 0-)

    ...Clinton won't net more than 14 delegates (at best) from WV, and it's more likely to be 10-12 when all is said and done. I examined it in my diary today.

    •  I've said it before (11+ / 0-)

      and I'll say ti again.

      To say "All Republicans are racists" is wrong.
      But to say "All racists are Republicans" is nearly irrefutable.

      Blind faith in bad leaders is not patriotism - Rocky Anderson

      by librarianman on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:35:05 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  A lot of racists... (5+ / 0-)

        ... like the hood-wearing sort, think the GOP is too liberal.

      •  I always say... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Cream City, DaNorr

        ...that anyone who says that has never lived in Dorchester, MA. Or any one of hundreds of other places like it all over the country.

      •  I wish that it were that easy. (4+ / 0-)

        But you are mistaken.

        Donate for Burma! https://secure.avaaz.org/en/burma_cyclone/77.php "All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing." (Edmund Burke)

        by resa on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:53:53 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  I'm not sure that is true (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Fixed Point Theorem, njb, Alohilani

        I am hearing a lot of Hillary supporters sounding very racist.  Anyone who supported Hillary and won't vote for Obama is either a racist or a traitor to this country (or maybe both).  Obama and Hillary's stand on issues are practically identical. Obama hasn't done anything nasty to Hillary.  The only "sin" he has committed against Hillary is to beat her.  So how is that justification for voting for McCain?

        •  It is quite confusing and complex (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Allogenes, njb, Alohilani

          Some of her supporters just want a woman President so badly too and for those people, it is not racism. They might just need time to get over being angry at Hillary 's opposition. As with these people, if Edwards were beating Hillary, they would say the same thing.

          So we have to separate out her very staunch supporters who just want Hillary or no one at this point from the racists.

          Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter. Martin Luther King Jr.

          by wishingwell on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:20:13 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  I'm so mad at Hillary Clinton & her husband right (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          janinsanfran, librarianman, BrighidG

          now that I want to spit when I hear their names.  My best friend and I have given up our weekly coffee until the nomination is settled because she's for Hillary and it's creating bad blood.

          That said, people have lots of reasons to support Hillary over Obama.  I think they're wrong but they're not necessarily evil or racist.  Some want a woman, some just want to relive what they remember as happy times when Clinton was president.  One woman (from Indiana) e-mailed me and told me she was voting for Hillary because she was older and has just seen more stuff in life that can prepare her to be president.  She (a 65-year old woman) will absolutely vote for Obama in November.  

          •  My aunt voted for Hillary because (0+ / 0-)

            "after all I have been through as a woman and a single mom (she's about 62 I think), I just have to pull that lever for Hillary. I just can't vote for a black man over a woman".

            I was a bit taken aback by that, but she was not changing her mind -- no matter what stupid stuff she and her campaign said and did (she didn't like much of their tactics).

            That makes me sad. But, at least she said she would vote for Obama in the General Election.

            Ready to support Obama "on day one!"

            by Kim from Pgh PA on Tue May 13, 2008 at 11:26:23 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

      •  Remember... (5+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        missLotus, lauramp, Ma Joad, dskoe, Alohilani

        Racists in the south are Republicans because the Republicans built their post Civil Right Act strategy around winning the white racist vote in the South.  Democrats are, historically, no strangers to race baiting themselves.

        •  But how is that, if some of the people (0+ / 0-)

          supporting her are clearly racist? I think there are plenty of Democratic racists as well - unfortunately. I agree with Faithfull (below) that it may be more regional than partisan.

          That SNL Hillary skit was so good -- "My supporters are racists. I'm not bragging, that's just the way it is". I was laughing so hard, but felt a little guilty in a way at the same time.

          Of course, all people living in the Appalachia region as racists -- and I don't want to have that stereotype. I live in it for one thing! But there sure seems to be a greater concentration of racial prejudice in that area.

          Ready to support Obama "on day one!"

          by Kim from Pgh PA on Tue May 13, 2008 at 11:17:14 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  I disagree (0+ / 0-)

        I think its much more geographic and demographic than partisan, unfortunately. Although I do think that racist tendencies get played out more in the modern Republican party (obvious w/ Obama as our nominee)

        Oh, the hills are groaning with excess, like a table ceaselessly being set.

        by faithfull on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:13:35 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I agree as most Republicans I know are not (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          librarianman, Cream City

          racists and loathe racism. They tend to live in regions other than Applachia or had parents who taught them the evils of racism. But they are Republicans for other reasons, having nothing to do with race. For instance, some of these people eagerly got behind Lynn Swann for Governor of PA because he was a Republican or adore Condi Rice because she is a Bushie or would voe for Colin Powell.

          I too think it is more regional than partisan.

          Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter. Martin Luther King Jr.

          by wishingwell on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:23:19 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Sorry to disagree, (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            panAmerican

            especially because I usually do agree with your comments, wishingwell, but I just can't go along with this idea that racism is more prevalent among Republicans or that it's so much more confined to one region than another.  I've just seen too much counterevidence.

            I also really don't think that what we're seeing in Appalachia is just a racism issue.  Racism is a part of the equation, surely, but I think we're seeing that overlap and mesh with other influences that might prove to be the bigger determinants if we can take a more complex and nuanced gander at the data.  I'd also like to see how those numbers compare to the accounts from people on the ground in those areas.

            •  Certainly poverty, unemployment, and (0+ / 0-)

              undereducated people were more than likely raised in poverty -- and this affects one's psychological/social development, which then is carried on into adulthood. And I personally think that these psychological effects combined with a poor and/or short education often lead to ignorance and narrow-mindedness -- which favors prejudicial attitudes that one has been raised with.

              Racism is more prevalent if other contributing factors are present - including region. There is certainly racism everywhere, but certain regions can have a greater concentration of those types of attitudes (i.e. poor, undereducated areas).

              Otherwise, why do we see such stark differences in the voting trends and exit polls in different regions of the country?

              Ready to support Obama "on day one!"

              by Kim from Pgh PA on Tue May 13, 2008 at 11:44:18 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

      •  I still think if Powell were GOP nominee and say (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        librarianman, ArtSchmart

        Edwards was the Democratic nominee, it would be interesting to see observe how some would vote. As that would clear it up very fast if a black man is ever the GOP nominee and a white man is a the Dem. nominee..how it would go...it would separate the racist Republicans from other Republicans..etc..

        Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter. Martin Luther King Jr.

        by wishingwell on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:24:52 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Not really. (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          librarianman, St Louis Woman

          It just pits one prejudice against another.  Is your fear of spineless, gay-loving baby-killers running the country greater than your fear of a black man?

        •  Its happened before (0+ / 0-)

          Lynn Swann (black republican) v Ed Rendell in PA.

          Swann way underperformed in the middle and northeastern parts of the state where republicans usually do well (appalachia).  Swann got beat by more than 20%

          Rendell is a very good campaigner, and Swann was a neophyte, so it might not have anything to do with race, but Rendell himself said it did in a famous quote often trashed on this website.  He did win a bunch of counties in the northeast and central parts of the state that he didn't win in his first run.

          There is no doubt that racism will be a factor in this election.  I view it as Obama started the race with a -5 handicap he has to overcome, but he just might be able to win anyway because Bush gives McCain an even bigger liability.  

          •  true but Swann was inexperienced, he left ABC (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            ArtSchmart

            with a resume of a pro football player then newscaster to run for Governor. A lot of Republicans felt he lacked the experience to be Governor. And Rendell was the incumbent Governor. Incumbents are often favored in PA politics. That is why it was so great to get rid of Santorum. But that also happened as part of the bi partisan to Clean Sweep PA of incumbents in 2006. Rendell was the exception and I think it was because Rendell has the machine going for him and also Swann put little money and effort into his campaign. It was well known he had no experience.

            Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter. Martin Luther King Jr.

            by wishingwell on Mon May 12, 2008 at 03:46:13 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

      •  but then there are those Republicans who (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        librarianman

        loathe racism as much as we do..especially the well educated Republicans or Fundy Republicans in certain areas of the country.

        Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter. Martin Luther King Jr.

        by wishingwell on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:27:14 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  one more kick at the can...... (6+ / 0-)

      Dear kossacks yesterday I was on the recommended list for asking for donations for a shelter box.
      one box is 1,000.
      We have raised $720
      We need $280 to pay for a whole box.

      donate
      here
      http://www.shelterboxusa.org/

      post your donation so I can add it to the other here....
      http://www.dailykos.com/...

      You guys are the bomb!!!!!

      sorry for posting this to your diary PsiFighter37, but after today I will shut the hell up.

      donate to a shelter box please http://www.shelterboxusa.org/

      by TexMex on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:41:17 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Obama must focus on education (6+ / 0-)

      as President. Bigotry stems from ignorance. Educated people tend to be more accepting. Those mountains aren't exactly riddled with highly educated folks.

      John McCain '08 - Hope Less!

      by kitebro on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:42:39 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Hmm, this an interesting (14+ / 0-)

      theory, but it doesn't seem to hold up.

      For one thing, It doesn't take income into account.

      Fact is, Obama is losing to Hillary nationally among white working class by thirty points. He's won working class white in only one state, Wisconsin.

      The states that he does relatively well among whites--western states and Connecticut, for example--are generally states were there are enough affluent whites to make up for his loss among wwc. And in caucus states where an intense following and good organization could help him to prevail.

      Appalacian states tend to be poorer.

      There's not something in the water in West Virginia. It's just relatively poor and 97 percent white.

      And even in Massachusetts, a relatively affluent state, Obama lost whites 58-40.

      All of which is to say that Obama doesn't have a problem with whites, he has a problem with working class whites, especially older working class whites.

      Why? It's complicated. It isn't just race; Bill Bradley didn't do well either. It has to do with race and style and Hillary's race-based appeals, and Wright and history...

      But I've had enough of this simplistic argument that anyone who won't vote for Obama because of his race is a racist and will vote GOP anyway. This is a denial of the complex way in which race and racism work.

      Yes, it's a problem, not a lethal problem, one that can be overcome as long as Obama and his supporters don't deny that there's a problem.

      •  Uh Huh, It Couldn't Be That... (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        wishingwell, Cream City, edg, Alohilani

        ...many of those voters simply preferred Clinton over Obama.

        And losing a demographic in the primary, that means it's a "problem."

        Will you EVER give up the Obama concern trolling?  Will you be complaining about Obama's electoral shortcomings on Innauguration Day?

        The revolution will not be televised, but we'll analyze it to death at The Next Hurrah.

        by Dana Houle on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:09:08 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  he's not a troll (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Shawn, Burned, Allogenes, david mizner

          Be nice now.

        •  Great substantive reply (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Shawn, raboof, greeseyparrot

          to a substantive criticism.

          I'm almost certain that since March her numbers among the white working class have remained steady across states and regions for the last couple of months, a fact that would decimate your "regionalistic" theory. When more social sciencey types get a hold of your pet theory, they'll destroy it.

          And this is laughable--'many of these voters simply preferred Clinton over Obama"--well, Yes!!! They voted for her, after all: the question is why?

          The concern among thinking Democrats is that if Hillary can win the white working class voters by pretending to be a cultural conservative and playing the race, Jeremiah Wright, and national security cards, what's a genuine cultural conservative gonna be able to do in a GE when the pool of swing white working class voters grows with the infusion of Reagan Dems, many of whom sit out primaries?

          As I said, it's not a lethal problem. Give O's strength among AA's and (we hope) Latinos and independents (assuming that holds), he just has to do well enough.

          Or we can all just come up with pet theories to explain away the challenge.

          Uh, Obama has a problem with white voters who wear flannel...yeah, that's it!

          •  Great Counterargument (0+ / 0-)

            "I'm sure your theory sucks, and someday in the future someone else will prove it!"

            Sincerely, a non-thinking Democrat

            The revolution will not be televised, but we'll analyze it to death at The Next Hurrah.

            by Dana Houle on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:33:39 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  I read in this piece (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              faithfull, Burned

              that you will explore "some of the reasons" for this in upcoming essays.  If that's the case, say so.  But you're not living up to very high standards with posts like this one.

            •  You've offered (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              raboof, Burned, wvablue

              absolutely no defense to my pointing out that you ignore class and economics.

              At the beginning of your post, you purport to be disproving the claim that Obama has a problem among working class white voters, and then break out a bunch of fancy charts showing how Obama and Clinton fared among the population at large, providing no info about white working class voters.

              In fact, as I said he's losing white working class voters nationally by 30 points and that's roughly the margin he's been losing them in every state. He's been losing whites--as opposed to working class white--by less.

              What West Virginia and Kentucky have is a unusually high concentration of poor and working class whites and a small black population.

              No we can disagree, I suppose, whether Obama's losing to Hillary by 25-35 among working class whites and 10 to 20 among all whites represents a problem. There can be no disagreement that Obama is losing handily among the white working class, and that that's true beyond your lose definition of Appalachia.

              •  BTD (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Cream City, va dare

                does a pretty good job showing the silliness of DH's theory. The more I think about it, the more I'm sure DH would like to have this one back.

                But that still does not explain all of Obama's white working class problem. Let's look at three other states: Arizona, Florida and Indiana. In Arizona, Clinton won the white vote by 53-38 (she won Latinos 55-41.) In Florida, Clinton won whites by 53-23 (she won Latinos by 59-30). In Indiana, Clinton won whites 60-40. Are these three states in Appalachia too? Need to hear more? Ok.

                In Massachusetts, Clinton won whites 58-40 (she won Latinos 56-36). In Rhode Island, Clinton won whites 63-37. In New Jersey, Clinton won whites 66-31.

                Unless the entire country East of the Mississippi is now referred to as Appalachia, I think this proposed theory explains very little and indeed is part of the entire Ostrich approach we now see from Obama blogs. It is just plain silly now.

                D'oh!

                •  HEAVENS! (0+ / 0-)

                  Armando disagrees with me!  Shocking!!!!!

                  Gee, citing Armando, that does wonders for your credibility.  He's SUCH a clear-eyed analyst.

                  [But thanks, you're usually just sour, but that made me laugh.]

                  The revolution will not be televised, but we'll analyze it to death at The Next Hurrah.

                  by Dana Houle on Mon May 12, 2008 at 03:33:00 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                •  Where's the balance? (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  DHinMI, brklyngrl

                  By focusing on states that Clinton won, you self-select for voters who like Clinton. What does an analysis of all states won by Obama show? Does he have a white people problem in Iowa, Idaho, Utah, Wisconsin, Illinois and the 22 other states he's won? If so, then he does need to address it. But focusing strictly on the MSM "keep our ratings alive please" meme that Obama has a problem with white people is just plain silly. You can do better than that.

                  McCain - lost bearings, lost moorings. Won't somebody please buy the poor man a compass and an anchor so he can sail off into the sunset?

                  by edg on Mon May 12, 2008 at 07:46:45 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

            •  Sad response... (0+ / 0-)

              Oh, the hills are groaning with excess, like a table ceaselessly being set.

              by faithfull on Mon May 12, 2008 at 03:37:35 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  Causation a tricky problem in politics (4+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Cream City, faithfull, Burned, wvablue

            Hillary can win the white working class voters by pretending to be a cultural conservative and playing the race, Jeremiah Wright, and national security cards,

            IF those tactics are the reasons for winning.  Which I suppose goes in part to the root of your question--"why?"  If it is those things, there are people who are impervious to Obama no matter what he does or says (some of them in Dorchester, as one commenter suggested).  But I don't think that's wholly the case.

            This excellent diary has me thinking that there are identity politics at play here, but that it isn't so simple as race.  I think that over her career, Clinton has become strongly identified with unions and union-sympathy.  I think there's a feeling about her--like Clarise Starling in "Silence of the Lambs"--that feels like a mountain girl who has shined up nicely.  She definitely comes from a world that's closer to Appalachia than Obama does.  It's a matter of degree, but an important one.  Race is a piece, but only a piece.

            I think Obama can overcome it.  At least enough to carry some of these states in the general.  But he's going to have to make a concerted effort to do it.

            •  Say What!!! (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              DHinMI

              She definitely comes from a world that's closer to Appalachia than Obama does

              She grew up in suburban Chicago in an upper-middle class family that owned vacation property in Pennsylvania and her parents paid to send her to Welleley and Yale, where she earned a law degree which secured employment at a law firm.

              Yeah, sounds like a lot of Appalachians I know.

              McCain - lost bearings, lost moorings. Won't somebody please buy the poor man a compass and an anchor so he can sail off into the sunset?

              by edg on Mon May 12, 2008 at 07:57:30 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  Look at past races... (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            edg, Indieman, Alohilani

            It is typically the African American votes that put the democratic candidate over the top.

            Bill Clinton did not win among white voters in the general election. It was the black voters who gave him his decisive win. In fact, I believe he did even worse than Obama has been doing on average yet he won two elections.

            So while it might be nice if Obama could capture more of the white vote..and honestly, I think he will in the general, if Hillary were the nominee, she would certainly garner FEWER black votes than Bill Clinton did in the past. She has continued to insult black voters and has allowed those in her campaign to do so also. Besides, to win for her means winning through the Superdelegates at this point. I would not surprised if this would lose her even more black votes.

            So before we lament about the white votes, we need to remember that is the black votes that actually make the different in the end. Many of those Appalachian states WILL NOT go to a democrat anyway in the general.

          •  Nope (0+ / 0-)

            Here's Pearl Jam with "Rock Around Barack"

            SO MUCH FOR YOUR FLANNEL THEORY YOU TROLL!!!!

            :) i kid.

            Oh, the hills are groaning with excess, like a table ceaselessly being set.

            by faithfull on Mon May 12, 2008 at 03:37:03 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  Probably not unless Obama adjusts. (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Cream City, Burned, Allogenes

          Why are you just accepting this as if it is something that should be accepted?  I think Obama could pull this out if he were encouraged to do so.  

          You know as well as anyone that the economy is a key issue for voters right now.  Obama's message about cleaning up Washington stirs no inspiration in people who can't afford to drive to work now - that is too remote for them - conditions in Washington are irrelevant to them given the many other challenges on their doorsteps.

          I think Obama could do well in this region if he took an economic populist approach with them. Why won't he do that?  I am not talking about a lame gas tax holidays either.  There are things we could be doing right now to help and we should be doing them.  Do you not think that Michigan will require an economic populist approach as well?  Or do we think he'll win that state strictly with the help of Detroit voters?

          Giving Obama a pass on this does no one any good.  I don't believe it is in his best interest if he really wants to win in November and it certainly doesn't seem to help my personal interest of seeing a Democrat take the White House.  Obama can change the current conditions.  I have faith in his power to do that.  How come so many of his most ardent supporters don't?

      •  There is something in the water in West Virginia (8+ / 0-)

        Its selenium, arsenic, and coal sludge. Lets hear the candidates talk about that.

        Oh, the hills are groaning with excess, like a table ceaselessly being set.

        by faithfull on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:18:23 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Actually, what's going on is that the GOP (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          GayHillbilly, wishingwell, Burned

          has spent years cultivating the state and spreading misinformation about what Democrats want to do "to them" while Democrats have largely ignored the state - except of course Robert Byrd who keeps getting re-elected and is a pretty liberal Senator.

          More liberal than those Senators from Colorado for instance.

      •  I don't understand this: (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        RandomActsOfReason, Alohilani

        ...But I've had enough of this simplistic argument that anyone who won't vote for Obama because of his race is a racist...

        Isn't this true by definition--not an argument? What is not racist, or racially biased about not voting for Obama because of his race? If someone won't vote for Senator Clinton because of her gender, isn't that sexism? Or "gender bias" if you prefer.

        •  Fair question (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Shawn, Allogenes

          What I meant was that there probably are not a whole lot of Americans who wouldn't vote for an African-American under any circumstances, though more, probably, than I realize.

          What there are are millions of whites, over-represented among the under-educated and working class and the elderly, who need to be made to feel comfortable voting for a black man, and their concerns about him--cultural, stylistic--interact with their racial biases in complex ways that they're often not even aware of.

          To dismiss these people as simple racists whose votes would never be gotten is both to commit political suicide and to deny that complexity of race, a complexity Obama understands as well as anyone.

          •  I still do not get it (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Allogenes, brklyngrl, Alohilani

            millions of whites...who need to be made to feel comfortable voting for a black man

            How is this not a distinction without a difference, when you look at the basics of your sentence structure? How do you separate "I'm not voting for a black man because I'm uncomfortable" from "I will never vote for I a black man?" Either response is racist for the purpose of this election, and present reality. Maybe the latter is a flaming racist, and the former is to you a smpathetic racist, but for this election, it is racism determining the vote, and it is still reality.

            Certianly this is reality to black Americans who might be in a position to be in the job market, the housing market, or the taxi market in these --well, racist--Appalachian communities.

      •  It is not a class thing because (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        wvablue, Alohilani
        1. anyone who works for a living is working class, some are just affluent or comfortable working class. Working class does not equal poor. It is an economic relationship.
        1. non-white working class (either in the broad or your narrow sense of the term) vote for Obama in generally higher %s than white working class people do.

        You fell victim to one of the classic blunders, the most famous of which is "Never get involved in a land war in Asia".

        by yellowdog on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:20:09 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  And Hillary also (4+ / 0-)

          has a huge lead among whites who make less than 50k. It's not as big as her lead among whites with college degrees but still big.

          •  Isn't that backwards? (0+ / 0-)

            not as big as her lead among whites with college degrees

            I thought Obama the elitist led among college educated. Hillary, in her interview the other day, referred to her lead among "non-college-educated whites".

            McCain - lost bearings, lost moorings. Won't somebody please buy the poor man a compass and an anchor so he can sail off into the sunset?

            by edg on Mon May 12, 2008 at 08:06:00 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  no one is saying working-class = poor nt (0+ / 0-)
        •  1. (3+ / 0-)

          Not.  The term "working class" has never been used to mean "someone who works for a living."  

          •  I beg to differ (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Gooch, Alohilani

            Karl Marx defined the "working class" or proletariat as the multitude of individuals who sell their labor power for wages and do not own the means of production, and he defined them as being responsible for creating the wealth of a society. For example, the members of this class physically build bridges, craft furniture, fix cars, grow food, and nurse children, but do not themselves own the land, factories or means of production.

            There are many definitions of working class but I am talking about the economic one. There is no such thing as the 'middle class' economically unless you derine it by wages or salary alone. But then the other classes become lower and upper, not 'working class' and something else.

            Americans have a problem with class, seeing it as a ranking rather than an economic relationship.

            You fell victim to one of the classic blunders, the most famous of which is "Never get involved in a land war in Asia".

            by yellowdog on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:47:32 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  "Never" too strong a word. (0+ / 0-)

              C'mon man, no one using that phrase in politics (as opposed to political science) uses it in the Marxian sense.  You know as well as I do that the term "working class" is used as short-hand for people of a certain though usually undefined income range.  Particularly in conversations about who gets who to vote for them.

              If you're shifting the terms of the debate to a scholarly plane, you're doing it in a half-assed way.  Will you be breaking down primary voters into the "intelligentsia," etc.?  Where do the various gradations of health-care providers fall in your analysis?  Is a nurse a prole?  or is he a member of the intelligentisa?  Practically no one who works at physical labor owns the means of production.  Unless they're independent contractors and own their own business...

              For purposes of politics and discussions like this one, very, very few people deploy the term without expecting it to denote not only workers, but workers of a certain -- generally low -- level of income.

        •  good point about income levels (0+ / 0-)

          As there are some Union workers making considerably more money and with better benefits than many college educated folks. I see that all the time in my region.

          Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter. Martin Luther King Jr.

          by wishingwell on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:35:59 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  I'm not sure where you get those figures (0+ / 0-)

        I'm looking at the Pew report, and I don't immediately see a 30% gap.  There's a 24% gap among those under $50K, and a 40% gap for HS educated.

        But neither defines white working class very well.  The HS educated is a tiny percentage of the white working class Democratic voters, which is why the overall Dems totals are only 1-2 points off the 'attended college' totals.  Also, HS educated is in part a proxy for those older voters who are part of Hillary's base.  

        If what you're talking about is more than a page into that report, perhaps you can tell me.

      •  This is not an absolute fact (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Gooch, brklyngrl

        "Fact is, Obama is losing to Hillary nationally among white working class by thirty points. He's won working class white in only one state, Wisconsin."

        ::

        As I point out in this diary, demographics in the predominantly white caucus states are not analyzed, and no one can tell me Obama lost that demographic in a state as poor and white as Maine.

        •  Although (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          faithfull

          from the maps it's clear that hillary did better in northern maine (which is quite a bit poorer) than in southern maine (which includes a fair amount of coastal money).  But the margin was overwhelming in the south--better than 2-1 I think--and, trust me on this, there are plenty and more poor folks all over the state.

          •  I dont' have to trust you. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Gooch

            I live in Maine. Central Maine, in fact. The population of the County is minuscule compared to central and southern Maine and the coast, and I'd be willing to bet all that "coastal money" didn't caucus because the snow storm we had was worse on the coast than inland.

      •  Uncanny (0+ / 0-)

        The correlation to my father's history is perfect.
        He was born in the hills of Tennessee.
        He moved to Oklahoma during the depression.
        While he had African-American friends, he would never vote for one. He was a modified racist. He treated everyone that he met equally but bitched constantly about them as a group - a bizarrely odd man but representative of a portion of that group.

        While I do not have any stats, I do believe that the WWII generation and the baby boomers, with some exceptions, are far less likely to vote for Obama; thus, Clinton garners the "older" vote. The question is, "Is it because of his race?" There are not enough people like my father to make that much of a dent in the "older voters" demographic. So ......

        out of hope, out of rope, out of time

        by professorfate on Mon May 12, 2008 at 03:22:17 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Appalachia is near the bottom in income & educat (0+ / 0-)

      out of all states. Also, neither Kentucky or W. Virginia will go to Democrats, because of that.

      Ohio, Penn, NC and Virgina, can/will.

      •  WV goes Dem all the time (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        wvablue

        Governor, Both Senators, 2/3 Congressional Reps, and I think the state legislatures are Dem, but I'm not sure.

        You are right though about education level and poverty in Appalachia.

        Oh, the hills are groaning with excess, like a table ceaselessly being set.

        by faithfull on Mon May 12, 2008 at 03:54:13 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  The question remains... (13+ / 0-)

    which came first, Obama's "Appalachia Problem" or Clinton's dog whistle appeals to race?

    I believe she made this situation far worse than it would have been otherwise.

    The World is my country, all mankind are my brethren, and to do good is my religion. --Thomas Paine

    by David Kroning on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:34:00 PM PDT

    •  Do you have to be a racist to race bait? nt (0+ / 0-)
    •  I am really amazed (0+ / 0-)

      that even on the map, Appalachia is white.
      snarkedy

      Nothing can now be believed which is seen in a newspaper. Truth itself becomes suspicious by being put into that polluted vehicle. Thomas Jefferson 6/11/1807

      by Patriot4peace on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:49:38 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Which came first (0+ / 0-)

      which came first, Obama's "Appalachia Problem" or Clinton's dog whistle appeals to race?

      Unfortunately, its the former.  America has progressed enough in the last 40 years that very few people (and even fewer non-Republicans) will absolutely refuse to vote for a black.  The problem is that there are many voters for who a single perceived flaw is enough to not vote for a black, while flaws in candidates that look the same are weighed in a more balanced way.  

      Obama is essentially the perfect candidate, and I am convinced that a white Obama would win a 35 state landslide; as it is, it looks much closer to 270.

    •  Appalachian residents are as they have (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      wvablue

      been for a long time; I know them.  And your read of them is all wrong.  They are not, not, not racists.  But they are not interested in "change," which they have heard too many times from outsiders.

      Obama would not have done well there a year ago, either.  No urbanite Harvard type would.  His understanding of them would be that of a sociologist -- and they are 'way too wary of that by now.

      "Let all the dreamers wake the nation." -- Carly Simon

      by Cream City on Mon May 12, 2008 at 03:52:38 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Whereas an urbanite Yale type (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        edg

        apparently is just fine?

        •  Long as she drinks Canadian whiskey. n/t (0+ / 0-)

          McCain - lost bearings, lost moorings. Won't somebody please buy the poor man a compass and an anchor so he can sail off into the sunset?

          by edg on Mon May 12, 2008 at 08:09:17 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  She comes from the middle-class Midwest burbs (0+ / 0-)

          and it's how we're shaped from ages 10 to 14 that matters, as sociologists know.

          And of course, Clinton couldn't go to Harvard -- it didn't admit women then.  And while he went from Harvard to Chicago, she went from Yale to Arkansas for years, and you really have to be kidding if you think that's very urban.

          So she wasn't an urbanite until they went to Washington -- although, of course, there are many who call it just a big small town, too.

          Hope that filled in her background for you to understand better the differences between them -- as their backgrounds have been so formative, but quite differently.

          "Let all the dreamers wake the nation." -- Carly Simon

          by Cream City on Wed May 14, 2008 at 03:46:44 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  I see a Hatfield from Kentucky supports Hillary (4+ / 0-)

    http://www.dailymail.com/...

    Does this mean the McCoy's are for Obama?

  •  Oof (5+ / 0-)

    We've got a bi-i-ig Baptist problem in the middle of the country. Might consider spraying.

    (Kidding! As a former Baptist from the middle of the country, I have earned the right to joke)

  •  Obama just needs a new 'brand' (6+ / 0-)

    As mentioned in this snark diary Obama is not that first half-African American, he's "White Plus!" :P

    "Cynicism is a sorry kind of wisdom" - Barack Obama

    by pacified on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:35:47 PM PDT

  •  Surrender, Hillary! (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    wishingwell, Krush
  •  well (5+ / 0-)

    when was the last time any Democrat recently won anything in Appalachia? I believe it was Clinton...neither Kerry nor Gore won any state south of Delaware so I don't see this as a big problem for Obama.

    I do not believe he should ignore these parts of the country, but they are not part of the path to victory in November.

    "People place their hand on the Bible and swear to uphold the Constitution. They don't put their hand on the Constitution and swear to uphold the Bible." --J.R.

    by michael1104 on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:36:01 PM PDT

    •  Ahem (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      reklemrov, lams712, dskoe, Alohilani

      Gore won Florida, it was stolen from him.  

      The revolution will not be televised, but we'll analyze it to death at The Next Hurrah.

      by Dana Houle on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:38:10 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  well my point still stands... (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        resa, Harkov311, lams712, gloryous1

        Florida is not part of Appalachia...

        All I am saying is that winning some of these states would be nice, but if Obama indeed has an "Appalachia problem" I don't believe it matters much since he doesn't need it to win.

        "People place their hand on the Bible and swear to uphold the Constitution. They don't put their hand on the Constitution and swear to uphold the Bible." --J.R.

        by michael1104 on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:40:32 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  PA (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      wishingwell, lgmcp, gloryous1

      Gore and Kerry both won it

      Obama has to win it to win

    •  i don't think the problem is race (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Cream City, Allogenes, Terra Mystica

      I think it's class.  She has connected with working-class voters better than he (and Kerry).  

      •  I agree... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        wishingwell, Allogenes

        I don't think race is the whole part of the story...

        "People place their hand on the Bible and swear to uphold the Constitution. They don't put their hand on the Constitution and swear to uphold the Bible." --J.R.

        by michael1104 on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:10:20 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Unfortunately, Its Racial ... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        GN1927, brklyngrl

        Obama has done just fine connecting with black working-class voters. If, as you contend, the problem is one of class with no racial overtones then Hillary would be doing much better with black voters.

        I'm a YellaDawg Democrat ...no matter how hard Hill & Bill try, I will not vote for McSame.

        by DaNorr on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:15:49 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  that's the wrong argument (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          wishingwell, rian90, faithfull

          You cannot saying because working-class blacks voted for him he doesn't have a class problem, because identity politics is playing into these numbers.  I'm not saying AAs are all voting for him because he's black, not at all, but the margins indicate that at least some are.
          For example, you cannot say that Obama has a older female problem because they're voting for Hillary.  Some one those votes can be attributed to identity politics as well.  The argument can work both ways, but both arguments would be flawed.

          •  good point sunshine as I think (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            sunshineonthebay

            Hillary is winning older white woman by an even larger margin than lower income whites of both sexes? I could be wrong but I am living in PA where voters over 55 comprised close to 40 pct of those voting in the primary. And 59 pct of the voters in PA were Women, that is huge and most of them were over 45 years of age.

            The media talks about white working class where instead they should point out that just maybe Hillary is getting the older women vote and older women tend to vote in very large numbers.

            Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter. Martin Luther King Jr.

            by wishingwell on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:42:19 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  it's all of the above (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Cream City, Alohilani

              You can interpret results in a number of ways.  For example, you can say women are voting for him in greater numbers due to identity politics.  Or you could say she is the better candidate and had men not been sexist more would vote for her as well.  Same argument can be made for Obama.  You could say AAs are voting for him because of identity politics.  Or you could say they are voting for him because he's the better candidate and more whites would vote for him if they were not racists.
              My main point, though, before I digressed, was that Obama doesn't have a white problem.  He has a working-class problem.  Many voters have made it clear that they do not connect with him on economic issues.  That is the problem he needs to address so he doesn't lose people to McCain.  We cannot afford a defection of even 10%.

          •  What i'm saying is that (0+ / 0-)

            working class blacks are voting for Obama - just as they voted for Kerry and Gore and Clinton and Dukakis and Mondale and Carter and  McGovern and Humphrey and Johnson and Kennedy - and are not voting for Hillary. If class is the primary reason why white working class voters support Hillary, then those same reasons should hold for black working class voters. As black and white working class voters are divergent in their respective choice in the democratic primary and the divergence  breaks along racial lines, race is obviously playing a bigger role here than class. But that's wokay cause this is just another aspect of life in the USA that is evolving as we strive to be a more perfect union.

            And I'm not fingering any side as the bad guy. But reality, you know, bites. The historic nature of the democratic primary not only has created the opportunity for real social progress, it also has the potential to tear the party apart. After all, if McCain beats Obama in November will it be because the majority of whites continued to vote Republican in presidential elections, or will it be because a larger than normal percentage of the majority of whites voted for McCain? If its the former reason, than Obama will have lost for the same reasons that democratic candidates for POTUS have lost since 1968, the majority of whites preferred the republican candidate. But what if he losses for racial reasons? As whites constitute over 75% of the total vote it wouldn't take but a small percentage of whites voting for racial reasons to have a profound on the election. This is the danger of Hillary stoking racial ire, black and white. I doubt if the democratic party wants the animosity that now exists between the black community and the Clintons to affect the bonds between it and its most loyal constituents.

            You are correct  when you say that

            you cannot say that Obama has a older female problem because they're voting for Hillary

            because its only older white women who are voting overwhelmingly for Hillary. Black women, young old and in between, are voting for Obama. So, yes, there is a lot of indentity  politics involved here, but so what. Its a hell of a lot better than the identity politic of white males only that has hindered the advancement of our society for far too long.

            So you see that when you perform the same demographic analysis on blacks that is always done on whites, the racial divisions again crop up. Now maybe it is the blacks who are being more racial here than whites. Maybe. But when it comes to issues of class, when was the last time blacks were accused of voting against their socio-economic interests? If the white working class voted the same as the black working class, the Republican Party would become the minority party quicker than you can say George Bush.  Universal Health care would have happened years ago, there would be no war in Iraq, and the rich would be paying their fair share of taxes.

            BTW - If look at the presidential voting pattern of the AA community you will see that blacks always, in both the primaries and GE, vote for the most liberal candidate. Blacks in Maryland recently voted for a liberal white (democrat)over a conservative black (republican) in a US Senate race. They could have sent another black to the US Senate, where there has been a total of only 3, including Obama, since the late 1800's. Instead, the AA of Maryland voted overwhelmingly for the white guy. Blacks do play identity politics, but when you're only 12% of the population, other realities come first.

            I've babbled enough. I'm not accusing these working class voters, black or white, of being racists. But the racial and gender components of id politics are real and easy to arouse. Come the GE, we will find out if class overrides race, a necessary step on the path to a more perfect union.

            I'm a YellaDawg Democrat ...no matter how hard Hill & Bill try, I will not vote for McSame.

            by DaNorr on Mon May 12, 2008 at 04:39:42 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

      •  Anyone notice Susan Faludi's op ed (0+ / 0-)

        Friday? Apparently Obama's real problem with a certain demographic isn't racism, it's machismo! (I don't think Faludi uses that term, it's my extrapolation.) Hillary is presenting herself as the real man in the contest. She's broken through the "glass floor" (that term is from Faludi) and shown that she can get down in the mud with the guys and fight on their terms, rather than trying to impose rules on them and trying to force them to "play nice."

        When civilizations clash, barbarism wins.

        by Allogenes on Mon May 12, 2008 at 03:51:29 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Dems win in Appalachia all the time (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Gooch, wishingwell, Cream City, wvablue

      Senate:
      WV - Byrd, Rockerfeller
      VA - Webb, M Warner poised to win
      OH - Sherrod Brown
      PA - Casey

      Congress
      WV - Rahall, Mollohan
      VA - Boucher (who I loathe)
      OH - Zack Space, Charie Wilson
      KY - Ben Chandler
      NC - Heath Shuler

      Governors:
      WV - Manchin (who I loathe)
      TN - Bredesen
      VA - Warner, Kaine
      OH - Strickland

      Thats just off the top of my head.

      And Appalachia, with 70 swing votes in OH, PA, VA, WV, NC, TN, and KY is THE MOST IMPORTANT region for us to perform well in in the whole country. There is no victory without improving our performance in Appalachia.

      Oh, the hills are groaning with excess, like a table ceaselessly being set.

      by faithfull on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:24:19 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Loath is too strong of a word.. (0+ / 0-)

        for a Dem like Boucher (don't know enough about Governor Manchin). He's a good Democrat in a rock-ribbed GOP district that always votes (R) in Presidential elections. Boucher is fornet neutrality, very pro-choice, has an excellent record on trade, etc. The two biggest problems I see with him are related to his record on Iraq and I've heard people complain about his enviornmental record. Overall, though, he's a solid representative for his district.

        "The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing" -8.25, -7.54

        by dem4evr on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:34:27 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I saw him make a 60 year old constituent cry (0+ / 0-)

          Because he told her he didn't want to hear a word she had to say after she told him she was against the mountaintop removal mining that is completely destroying her community. If treating his constituents like garbage isnt reason enough, his defense of that practice (mountaintop removal) is enough to make me loathe him.

          And the district is R+3, so, yeah it leans R, but its not "rock-ribbed," and Boucher always wins by plenty.

          Oh, the hills are groaning with excess, like a table ceaselessly being set.

          by faithfull on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:43:13 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  Not True (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Gooch

        Appalachia is a fairly small part of NC and VA, which will be far more competitive this year than KY or WV.  And were it not for the Supreme court and the Bush cabal in Florida, Gore would have won without any of those states.  And had Gore won NH, Florida wouldn't even have mattered.  

        The revolution will not be televised, but we'll analyze it to death at The Next Hurrah.

        by Dana Houle on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:36:39 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Warners winning strategy in VA (0+ / 0-)

          which was also the model for Kaines win in 05 hinged on "over-performance" in Appalachian VA. The same goes for Strickland in OH and Casey in PA and any statewide candidate in WV or KY.

          You say that Gore could have won without any of Appalachia...BUT if Gore had won JUST WV, nobody would have given a damn about Florida, because it would have given Gore 270 EVs. So...WTF?

          Oh, the hills are groaning with excess, like a table ceaselessly being set.

          by faithfull on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:40:38 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  You Were the One Who Said... (0+ / 0-)

            ...Appalachia is the most important region in the country and that "there is no victory without improving our performance in Appalachia."  I refuted it.  So I don't know what your WTF is about, except may you're not following the discussion very well.

            The revolution will not be televised, but we'll analyze it to death at The Next Hurrah.

            by Dana Houle on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:53:23 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Yeah, you accuse a lot of people of that... (0+ / 0-)

              You can't say "Gore didn't need any Appalachia states, because he won Florida..." for a few reasons:

              1. Gore didn't win any Appalachian states except PA, and
              1. if he had won WV (the smallest Appalachian state, which Clinton won), he wouldn't have had to worry about Florida because he would have had 270 EVs.

              That, to me, makes a pretty damn good case that Gore could have won by improving his performance in Appalachia. We saw the same thing with Kerry in 04. If he campaigns in WV and OH, we win.

              I pointed out that Dem candidates for Senate, House, and Governor have been winning in in OH, PA, WV, NC, TN, VA, and KY recently by overperforming in the Appalachian part of the region. Then I showed you a historical example of how WV case the swing vote in 2000 and 2004.

              So, perhaps my "WTF" should have been an "isn't it obvious now?"

              Oh, the hills are groaning with excess, like a table ceaselessly being set.

              by faithfull on Mon May 12, 2008 at 03:02:06 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  If You're Argument Would Stabilize... (0+ / 0-)

                ...I would engage it.  But you keep changing it to be right.

                The revolution will not be televised, but we'll analyze it to death at The Next Hurrah.

                by Dana Houle on Mon May 12, 2008 at 03:06:34 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  What are my two arguments? (0+ / 0-)

                  Because the one I've been consistently trying to make is that Democrats have to perform well in the Appalachian areas of OH, PA, WV, NC, VA, KY, and TN to win in those states, and that Appalachia is the single most important geographic region in the Presidential election because of the 70 swing electoral votes that hinge there.

                  And please, I am trying to engage you because this is my home, my major was Appalachian Political History, I went to Appalachian State, my job involves Appalachia...i love this place and have every right to give your piece constructive criticism. I don't mean to disrespect, but either I am failing to articulate a point or you are showing a terrible attitude of engaging that criticism.

                  Oh, the hills are groaning with excess, like a table ceaselessly being set.

                  by faithfull on Mon May 12, 2008 at 03:15:25 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  He engaged by arguing that (0+ / 0-)

                    Appalachia isn't necessary to victory. You seem to have disregarded that point.

                    •  Disregarded? (0+ / 0-)

                      I hope not.

                      Where he argued NH made the difference, I argued WV made the difference. Either would have been able to flip the election in 2000. Remember Clinton won WV (I believe he won it twice).

                      I make this argument in the larger context that Dems need to perform well (or at least "better") in "Appalachia" to safely win in these states (PA, OH, VA, NC), and that you can't win the presidentcy without electoral votes from these states. Remember, Kerry only took PA (21 EVs) by a few points. But if we improve our performance in Appalachia, we take WV (5 EVs), OH (20), PA (21) safely, and put VA (13), NC (15), and possibly TN (11) on the board. Kentucky may even be a possibility, but then the election is no longer competitive.

                      Oh, the hills are groaning with excess, like a table ceaselessly being set.

                      by faithfull on Mon May 12, 2008 at 05:31:21 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

        •  Yes much like PA which is a blue state (0+ / 0-)

          who has not voted for a Republican for President in 20 years. And Casey not only beat Man on Dog but he wiped the floor with him.

          And I was so pleased that Centre, Union, and Dauphin Counties in Central PA went for Obama. He did much better there than in Pittsburgh and its suburbs. Of course, Harrisburg is in Dauphin County and State workers have big issues with Fast Eddie.
          And Centre County has Penn State.

          But Union county, largely rural, was an interesting win for Obama.

          Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter. Martin Luther King Jr.

          by wishingwell on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:46:02 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  Actually of the states that you cited only 2 (0+ / 0-)

        is the majority comprised of Appalchia:  TN and WVA.  

        •  I dont think TN is "the majority" of Appalachia (0+ / 0-)

          But a Democrat winning a statewide election DOES hinge on their ability to be able to perform well in the Appalachian part of E TN, same as in SWVA, and the Appalachian parts of PA, OH, and WV (aka - all of it)

          Oh, the hills are groaning with excess, like a table ceaselessly being set.

          by faithfull on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:51:54 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  ...I dont think TN is "majority Appalachia" (0+ / 0-)

            that might have come off wrong the first time.

            Oh, the hills are groaning with excess, like a table ceaselessly being set.

            by faithfull on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:52:25 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  I meant that a majority of the state lies in (0+ / 0-)

            Appalachia.  A majority of VA, NC, PA and Ohio (and just as importantly the population centers in those states) do not lie in the Appalachia regions noted in the map.  The same is NOT true of WVA and TN.  

            •  I guess it depends (0+ / 0-)

              on if you consider the cumberland plateau "Appalachia." I think the ARC map is a bit too broad. To me, Appalachian TN includes most of TN-01, TN-02, and TN-03 over in the smokies.

              Oh, the hills are groaning with excess, like a table ceaselessly being set.

              by faithfull on Mon May 12, 2008 at 03:56:40 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

    •  Well, Senator Byrd can't seem to lose. (0+ / 0-)
      •  They see Byrd as one of them and someone (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Cream City

        who cares about them and can bring home the pork.
        I think it is easier for a West VA native who is a Democrat to get elected. And The Clintons are well known and familiar to them as well. As in doing some phone calls for Obama, I discovered some believe with Hillary comes Bill and they want the 2 for one.

        Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter. Martin Luther King Jr.

        by wishingwell on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:48:07 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Exactly -- the anti-Washington message (0+ / 0-)

          does not go well with my WV relatives.  The government has been good to them in many ways, New Deal through Robert Byrd.

          The "change" message makes them suspicious; they wonder, change to what?  It's unclear.
          The "unity" message makes them suspicious, too -- they asked, unite with whom?  We're supposed to unite with Chicago?  No way.

          Only detailed, specific, economic plans would reach this region, I think -- and a lot more reassurance about Obama's religious background.  They are extremely patriotic and proud of the country in the best ways.
          They point to their region's extremely high participation in every war, including this one.  (I note that Obama is wearing the lapel flag pin in WV.  It's a start.)

          "Let all the dreamers wake the nation." -- Carly Simon

          by Cream City on Mon May 12, 2008 at 04:01:33 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  I would like to see how many cat owners (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    droogie6655321, gloryous1, Highwind

    voted for Hillary

    Free the Pokemon!

    by Krush on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:36:19 PM PDT

  •  The county maps (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    theran, phatcat cane

    should give one a clue to the results disaster awaiting Hillary should she stay in past Tuesday.

  •  The million dolalr question is: (11+ / 0-)

    If Hillary were to get the nomination, does anyone think that Kentucky and/or West Virginia would actually be Blue?

    I tend to think that both states will go with McCain.

    The GOP will rouse the low information voter to the polls, regardless of who the candidate is. WV and KY are the GOP bread and butter states, and far too easy to manipulate IMHO.

    Blind faith in bad leaders is not patriotism - Rocky Anderson

    by librarianman on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:37:19 PM PDT

    •  Yeah, but... (17+ / 0-)

      ... I think this kind of analysis is helpful. The 50-state strategy isn't about putting a "San Francisco liberal" in every district in every state. It's more about finding ways for us to meet the needs of people in every district in every state.

    •  I doubt it. Not as long as she was against (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      lgmcp, llamaRCA

      torture and the war. It'd be closer, but in the end, the choices are basically between people who'd rather spend all our money killing Arabs, and people who think some of it should be spent on other things. And frankly, obliteration comments not withstanding, Hillary just doesn't seem to enjoy killing Arabs the way McCain would.

    •  Poblano's site has state-by-state (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      reklemrov, Crisitunity, zackamac

      polling averages along the right margin, and yes, at least according to polling in the state as it stands today, WV is doable with HRC as the candidate (obviously, countered by other states that slip out of reach when she is the candidate). KY, IIRC, is not.

      Liberal parenting funnies at The Hausfrau Blog

      by jamfan on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:48:46 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Not exactly (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      DHinMI, Cream City, lauramp, zackamac

      Look at Poblano's analysis over at 538. There are four states that his polling average shows that Clinton is likely to beat McCain, but McCain is likely to beat Obama: West Virginia (62% likelihood of victory for Clinton in the GE, 6% likelihood for Obama), Arkansas (72% for Clinton, 0% for Obama), Ohio (76% for Clinton, 42% for Obama), and Florida (64% for Clinton, 20% for Obama). Three of those states are ones that fit into the big purple Appalachian swath. (I don't know what's up with Florida; I assume it's because there are so many old people there and that's another strength for Clinton.) So the Appalachian problem does extend into the general. (This isn't the demographic analysis that he's been doing for the primaries; it's a composite of general election head-to-head polls.)

      (Lest anyone interpret this as a pro-Hillary comment, I'm just acknowledging that there are clear Obama and Clinton paths to victory in the general elction, each of which involves a different set of states. The Poblano model has him (but not Clinton) winning Michigan, Wisconsin, Iowa, Colorado, New Mexico, and Nevada.)

      Manufactured political distractions, you are officially on notice.

      by David Jarman on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:50:52 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  That's right, different paths to an electoral win (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        wishingwell, Ma Joad

        for Clinton and Obama (assuming that either of them could in fact win).  

        We have to keep in mind, however, that the "winning combination" is likely to change (again, assuming it's a win) after the primary season ends, and the head-to-head comparisons between McCain and Dem 1 or Dem 2 become the focus.  If you look at Poblano's swing state analysis, the combinations have changed already during the primaries.  And it would be instructive to see what happens if and when the predicted "bounce" comes when the primary race is settled.

      •  Obama hasn't been campaigning in Florida (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Ma Joad, Crisitunity, zackamac

        yet. I think that is a factor. His numbers rise sharply when he starts campaigning in a state, unlike Hillary's since she is already well known.

        Conservatism = greed, hate, fear and ignorance

        by Joe B on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:16:18 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  If Bigots in the Mountains (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      wishingwell, librarianman, llamaRCA

      Won't vote for Obama against a white woman, they won't vote for a white woman against a white man either.

    •  no but same argument can be made (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      wishingwell

      For a number of states Obama won.  The primary to general map is a silly argument on either side.

    •  NO (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Cream City

      WV especially is Dem down to the core. Bush and the coal cabal flipped this state in 2000, but its roots are HARDCORE Dem, and it should be OUR bread and butter

      Oh, the hills are groaning with excess, like a table ceaselessly being set.

      by faithfull on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:31:23 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Exactly. You know its history. (nt) (0+ / 0-)

        "Let all the dreamers wake the nation." -- Carly Simon

        by Cream City on Mon May 12, 2008 at 04:05:32 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Well, thanks! (0+ / 0-)

          Sarcasm or not I'll take the compliment :)

          Theres a lot to learn about WV, and I've gotten to spend some time enough there to just learn a little bit.

          Oh, the hills are groaning with excess, like a table ceaselessly being set.

          by faithfull on Mon May 12, 2008 at 04:14:26 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  No sarcasm intended -- I mean it (0+ / 0-)

            as it's good to clarify for some here who see WV as the South and Dixiecrat that it's quite different.  This primary has me remembering my trips there, too, and making me want to go back to those beautiful mountains.

            "Let all the dreamers wake the nation." -- Carly Simon

            by Cream City on Wed May 14, 2008 at 03:52:50 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

      •  WV is not the only state to have (0+ / 0-)

        moved toward the Republicans over the past generation or two.  This is also true of much of the south.  Just as 20 years ago NH was one of the most Republican states in the country but should go blue this time. Things change, and pointing to what used to be doesn't actually mean that's what is.

        •  "Trending R", maybe... (0+ / 0-)

          ...but FAR from a "GOP bread and butter state," as the poster called it.

          Dems control both houses of the state legislature, 2/3 Congressional seats (and are challenging the 3rd), both senate seats, and the governorship.

          Has WV moved "towards the Republicans" in the last generation or two? I don't know...but if it has, that is certainly not reflected in its elected officials. Bush won it twice by wrapping himself in the flag and having big coal throw a zillion dollars at the state. And if WV is "trending" Republican its only because its one of the states that went for Dukakis.

          Oh, the hills are groaning with excess, like a table ceaselessly being set.

          by faithfull on Mon May 12, 2008 at 05:37:37 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  Metro ATL wealthy suburbs still fit this mold (0+ / 0-)

    Don't let the wealthy northern suburbs which spewed Newt Gingrich onto the world fool you--there's deep skepticism of Obama in these parts!

  •  Monty Python (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Harkov311, lgmcp

    It seems to me that Hillary isn't going to give up--no matter what. It got me to wondering what the Monty Python guys would have thought of her:

    •  Somebody already did a Black Knight parody (0+ / 0-)

      It was in a diary last week. Holy Grail audio interposed with clips of the candidates. Witty and well done.

      Coming Soon -- to an Internet connection near you: Armisticeproject.org

      by FischFry on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:42:34 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  If you use the 65% maps.... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Cream City

    Obama's appeal isn't much more broadly-based than Clinton's. Southern Maine, plus a couple of midwestern states, and a small number of counties in the other midwestern states ; Otherwise, his appeal is in the Northwest and the Solid South -- will even Obama make the Dem ticket competitive there? I'm just saying, that's not a convincing measure.

    Even if you use the 55% map -- I'm not too worried about the northeastern states -- virtually every one will probably support him, but his weakness in the Southwest should be troubling.

    Coming Soon -- to an Internet connection near you: Armisticeproject.org

    by FischFry on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:40:54 PM PDT

    •  Whooooosh (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      wishingwell, Harkov311

      You clearly missed the point.  

      The revolution will not be televised, but we'll analyze it to death at The Next Hurrah.

      by Dana Houle on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:42:12 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Ummm.... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        faithfull

        I was making my own observations from those maps, apart from your religion-based argument.

        Coming Soon -- to an Internet connection near you: Armisticeproject.org

        by FischFry on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:45:33 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Again, Whoosh (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          wishingwell, Allogenes

          My argument isn't religion based.

          You may want to stop now.  

          The revolution will not be televised, but we'll analyze it to death at The Next Hurrah.

          by Dana Houle on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:46:41 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  County maps are even more misleading (6+ / 0-)

            than state maps because it looks like population is being evenly spread out across the country, but the reality is that certain counties have the population of 100 small counties. There are counties in Texas and Virginia--including some of the 90-10 ones--where only 300 people voted.

            Obama/Casey, my personal dream ticket.

            by The Bagof Health and Politics on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:55:15 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Only Misleading If You Assume Equal... (0+ / 0-)

              ...or near-equal distribution of population.  I don't know why anyone with even a rudimentary grasp of political geography would to such a thing.

              The revolution will not be televised, but we'll analyze it to death at The Next Hurrah.

              by Dana Houle on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:57:22 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Well then your entire post is misleading (4+ / 0-)

                Because you're using county data based upon percentages to make an argument about Appalachia, an argument which is off-base (it's exploiting fear, not racism, that gets Hillary where she is here. There's a difference). Because you assume that evidence of Obama under-performing in Virginia counties that vote 90-10 for Hillary is evidence of an "Appalachian Problem," even though those counties all had <1,000 votes. The larger counties--the counties with one good sized town--all voted at least 70-30, and in some of the better performing ones 60-40. So what you're doing is taking small counties with closeted local politics where there may well be local explanations for what went down, and positing that theory on the entire region. Further, it's worth noting Obama has won a few counties in Appalachia (Frederick, Rockingham, Augusta  Floyd, Montgomery and Highland counties plus Roanoke City in Virginia; Frederick in Maryland; Pickens, Andersen and Greenville in South Carolina; Buncombe and Avery in NC, and Dauphin, Union and Centre in Pennsylvania).</p>

                So the theory that he has zero support in the entire region is just flawed. He has some support. Frankly, the areas where he's getting creamed are areas where any Democrat would get creamed. But if he can get even a third of the people who are voting for Hillary in these counties to vote for him, he'll be at 35% in the general against McCain. You keep areas like that over 35%, and the cities start to offset the small counties--locking Maryland down and putting NC and VA in play. WV is another story.  

                Obama/Casey, my personal dream ticket.

                by The Bagof Health and Politics on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:13:08 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  If You Want to Actually Engage... (0+ / 0-)

                  ...what I wrote and implied rather than a strawman argument that is neither explicit nor implied in anything I wrote, please let me know.

                  The revolution will not be televised, but we'll analyze it to death at The Next Hurrah.

                  by Dana Houle on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:24:51 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  I love how people who don't live here (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    greeseyparrot, plembo

                    Tell us what we're thinking. If you want to discuss the region I live in and actually understand it, instead of making snotty, off-based allegations about it and perpetuating invalid and false stereotypes of it on the country, let me know. If not, not surprising. I don't make fun of Detroit. Believe me, with its Mayor, I could.  

                    Your assumptions are invalid, making everything else you wrote invalid. It looks nice and I'm sure it was a lot of work, but the core assumption, and though you deny it, it's that religion (and to a lesser degree race) is the problem in Appalachia is just bunk. The problem is that it takes a slimy politician who exploits fear to win out here. Bush did it, Clinton did it too. It's how you win here. There's lots of very real fears; politicians who exploit them are the successful politicians here.

                    Obama is running a campaign specifically opposed to that concept, which has been the dominant concept in this region here for a generation. It's little wonder that he's fairing poorly here. There's the actual region--not the snobish northern elitist reason--for what's going on here.

                    What will be interesting is seeing whether Hillary Clinton can take the people she's attracted--and it's not like these people were Obama supporters to begin with; they probably favored Huckabee and Romney--and deliver at least some of them to Obama in the fall. McCain is also not the kind of politician who exploits fears.

                    It's also worth noting that Obama has performed fine--even won a few counties--in the urban areas of our region. He won Roanoke, not exactly a liberal bastion. He got 41% in Hagerstown. He split Chambersburg. He won Dauphin County by a gigantic margin. He narrowly won Union and Centre Counties. Therein is his base for which to build upon in the general election. But that's inconvenient for your anti-Appalachian agenda. We're just a bunch of idiotic bumpkins to you. Democrats like that are the single reason so many people here hate Democrats.  

                    Obama/Casey, my personal dream ticket.

                    by The Bagof Health and Politics on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:35:04 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Again, If You Want to Engage... (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      Allogenes

                      ...something that's contained in what I wrote, you're welcome to.  But I didn't write anything about what people in Appalachia are thinking.  That's only in your imagination.  

                      Reading is fundamental.

                      The revolution will not be televised, but we'll analyze it to death at The Next Hurrah.

                      by Dana Houle on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:38:52 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  asdf (2+ / 0-)

                        ...race doesn't appear to have been much of a hindrance for Obama in the Democratic primaries, except, it appears, in Appalachia and in some regions where descendants of Appalachian migrants settled, such as the Ozarks, Oklahoma, and some isolated rural communities on the Plains.  Obama doesn't appear to have much of a problem with white voters.  But it seems quite likely Appalachia has a bit of an Obama problem.

                        So are you arguing that its a racial or religious problem, or both?

                        Oh, the hills are groaning with excess, like a table ceaselessly being set.

                        by faithfull on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:47:22 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  Yes, thank you for pointing that out (0+ / 0-)

                          Pretty clearly stated to my ears.

                          Obama/Casey, my personal dream ticket.

                          by The Bagof Health and Politics on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:56:10 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                        •  I Didn't Argue Causality (1+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          Allogenes

                          In fact, I made it quite clear in the post that I wasn't offering an explanation for why.  

                          The revolution will not be televised, but we'll analyze it to death at The Next Hurrah.

                          by Dana Houle on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:56:37 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  Ah, yes, so your hands are clean (0+ / 0-)

                            But you still got your point across that Appalachian residents are a bunch of elderly old hicks stuck in the 19th Century. When legitimate criticism citing specific examples that you glossed over arose, you just say we can't read properly. Rest assured, you'd do worse than Barack Obama out here if you ever ran for President.

                            Obama/Casey, my personal dream ticket.

                            by The Bagof Health and Politics on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:59:22 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  You Enjoy Fulminating About What... (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Allogenes

                            ...I didn't write, and complaining that I didn't write it, because then you wouldn't be wrong.  How tiresome.

                            The revolution will not be televised, but we'll analyze it to death at The Next Hurrah.

                            by Dana Houle on Mon May 12, 2008 at 03:03:21 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  You enjoy denying you wrote this (2+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Cream City, faithfull

                            The ethnic and cultural character of this part of the country has been more static since the 19th century than anyplace in America.  Outside of some of the new growth areas north of Atlanta or Huntsville, or in some of the college towns, most of the people in Appalachia trace their heritage back to immigrants from the borderlands of Northern Britain who began settling the region over 200 years ago.  Outside of the Northern part of Appalachia—Pennsylvania in particular—relatively few Eastern or Southern Europeans from the great waves of immigration that started in the 1880's have moved in to the area.  It's the most homogeneous region in America.  The region is home to few Catholics, and is heavily Baptist and Methodist.  

                            In the 19th century, migrants from Appalachia moved west.  People from Appalachia settled and put their stamp on the Ozark region of Missouri and Arkansas, on Okalahoma and the southern Plains, on North Texas, and eventually they were a big part of the initial growth of Southern California.  

                            First, to see if Obama has a "problem" with white voters, it's worth looking at where he's performed well.  Not surprisingly, he's done well in Northern cities and southern rural areas with very large populations of African Americans.  But his appeal is not limited to African-Americans and higher-income, highly-educated whites.

                             

                            But then you go on to observe that they're not voting for Obama in Appalachia while insisting that you're not saying race is the reason. Parsing which would make Bill Clinton proud. You looked at a demographic table and drew conclusions. You didn't bother to talk to Appalachian residents. And you proclaimed northern superiority in your post. Not surprising it'd be totally off-base under those circumstances.  

                            Obama/Casey, my personal dream ticket.

                            by The Bagof Health and Politics on Mon May 12, 2008 at 03:12:57 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Thanks For Demonstrating... (0+ / 0-)

                            ...that your hysteria has nothing to do with what I wrote or implied, but only with your ability to read or draw proper conclusions from what is written rather than what you imagine is being said (but really isn't).  

                            The revolution will not be televised, but we'll analyze it to death at The Next Hurrah.

                            by Dana Houle on Mon May 12, 2008 at 03:18:56 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Thanks for glossing over Roanoke (0+ / 0-)

                            And other areas which were inconvenient to your pre-determined anti-Appalachian bias, and then dismissing criticism on those specific points as irrelevant.

                            Obama/Casey, my personal dream ticket.

                            by The Bagof Health and Politics on Mon May 12, 2008 at 03:22:48 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  PS--That 19th Century Comment is noted (2+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Cream City, ridgerunner

                            And only a fool doesn't pick that up for saying "well, Appalachia, they're still backwards."

                            Obama/Casey, my personal dream ticket.

                            by The Bagof Health and Politics on Mon May 12, 2008 at 03:13:46 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  I only ask because... (0+ / 0-)

                            ...i've studied the same question and have yet to find the silver bullet "why." My senior research paper was on this very topic. So, I know the question, and I was hoping you could help me with an answer :)

                            Oh, the hills are groaning with excess, like a table ceaselessly being set.

                            by faithfull on Mon May 12, 2008 at 03:03:54 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  I guess you'll have to wait (2+ / 0-)

                            for future installments.  As DH says in the piece,

                            I'll try to address some of the reasons for this tendency in future posts.

                            Why s/he can't just say that in the comments addressing causation is a mystery to me.  The combined sarcasm, condescension and invective could fill a serving bowl.  For someone who supports a politician striving to raise the level of the narrative, it's a little disappointing.

                          •  Why not? (1+ / 0-)

                            Why make us wait for future posts DHinMi?  This is at least your second post on this issue so obviously the topic interests you and I suspect you have been working on the idea for awhile.  Why not give us a preview then?  

                            Faithfull has asked you nicely.      

                      •  Read your own post!!! (1+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        faithfull

                        You drew conclusions about the voting patterns of Appalachia. It's what you wrote. Perhaps you need to edit that if it wasn't your intent. You clearly stated that you believed religion--and ID with Hillary's Methodist faith--was a large force driving voters towards her. You can't write a post explaining why people of a certain region vote the way they do, and then insist that people who live there and take issue with it "didn't read it properly." Unless, as you apparently do from your last sentence, think that all residents of Appalachia are illiterate bumpkins.

                        I LIVE HERE. I worked on the Obama campaign here when I felt up to it. I'm involved in local politics. I understand the lay of the land. It isn't prejudice as much as it's exploiting fear. That's what is driving people to Clinton. But your maps and posts overstates Clinton's support by focusing on outlier counties where she got 90% of the vote without noting that those counties have puny Democratic electorates and aren't indicative of the broader region. You failed to mention areas which were inconvenient for your thesis (Roanoke especially). And therefore, I think the entire post is bunk.

                        All you've done is deny that you wrote anything about what the residents of Appalachia are thinking--despite harping paragraph after paragraph on religion. And then accused a resident of Appalachia of being an illiterate reader. Yep! As I said, I'm not surprised.    

                        Obama/Casey, my personal dream ticket.

                        by The Bagof Health and Politics on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:47:33 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                    •  Some areas are changing (2+ / 0-)

                      Chambersburg, for example, is becoming a DC suburb, as is Hagerstown. It's a long commute, but some people are relocating there --especially firefighters and police -- shiftworkers that don't have to commute every day. Roanoke is far more progressive than you admit, being the "big" city that serves the universities in Lexington and Blacksburg.

                      Is all of Appalachia the same as it ever was? No. They may not have any decent Chinese restaurants, but they usually have at least one Chinese restaurant, and maybe a pizza place -- and these days, a pseudo-Mexican place, too. However, in the more remote areas, the smaller towns, it is the same as it ever was.

                      Coming Soon -- to an Internet connection near you: Armisticeproject.org

                      by FischFry on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:44:25 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                    •  Want meaningful Sociology? Interstate highways (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      faithfull

                      Seriously. IN the last 50 years, the biggest factor in migratin patterns has been the interstate highway system.

                      Aside from the mountains, the single identifying characteristic of Appalachia is I-81. Runs through much of it. Those cities you mention: Roanoke, Hagerstown and Chambersburg sit right on the highway. I suspect that you can find for every city or town on an interstate, located within 90-120 minutes of a major city, a huge difference in the demographics of the community, related to the interstate. First in the 60s, and then again after the Iranian oil crisis, the price of gas remained incredibly cheap, especially compared with other costs of living, especially real estate in cities and close-in suburbs.

                      Without having the data, I bet there's a strong correlation between Obama's results and proximity to the interstates-- be it I-81, or I-70, or I-64 or I-66, or I-80, etc. People close to an interstate have more interaction with people from other regions -- and those communities themselves have become accessible and appealing to "outsiders". They've changed those areas.

                      Interestingly, though -- unless we come up with a new cheap fuel -- that dynamic is at an end, thanks to the Iraq war. The internet will compensate for that to a large extent, since it can bring the world into your den or bedroom -- or your office, wherever you choose to locate. I think that might be enough to keep the new locals happy. However, I think those communities will find it harder to attract new residents. Especially if real estate prices do not resume their past climbs, or recover lost value.

                      Coming Soon -- to an Internet connection near you: Armisticeproject.org

                      by FischFry on Mon May 12, 2008 at 03:14:30 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                    •  fear is the problem (0+ / 0-)

                      The problem is that it takes a slimy politician who exploits fear to win out here. Bush did it, Clinton did it too. It's how you win here. There's lots of very real fears; politicians who exploit them are the successful politicians here.

                      Really says it all.

                      The question is, how do you overcome it? Is it even possible? Or do you just write it off as a lost cause?

                      I don't think its really up to Clinton to deliver whatever support she has in the region to Obama, not that it wouldn't be nice if she tried. This is something I think he's going to have to do on his own, to find some way to connect to people and get them on board. It would take an extraordinary talent to do that. I guess we're going to find out pretty soon if he's got what it takes.

                  •  THoHaP has solid points (1+ / 0-)

                    And is adding an important element to this conversation, whether you implied it in your post or now, because the conversation is a much broader one than just your post or just this thread

                    Oh, the hills are groaning with excess, like a table ceaselessly being set.

                    by faithfull on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:35:53 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                •  Zero is a big number (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Cream City, Allogenes

                  DH's point is well-taken. I just think it's not a new point, nor exactly useful. Yes, Obama has trouble with the very types of people who like to live in small mountain towns, or small desert communities -- in other words, homogeneous. isolated communities. I get that he doesn't just mean those in APpalachia. He blelieves it applies to folks who left those communities decades, even centuries ago, and settled in this swath through the Ozarks and the Southwest, into California. I'm not sure if he's right about the migration patterns, but for anyone who knows the people in those areas, the results were entirely predictable. The interesting thing is what to do about it.

                  As for those counties you cite as exceptions -- there are reasons why they are exceptional. Rockingham in Virginia, for example. Home to a university town, in Lexington. It changes the demographics there. Frederick, in Maryland -- has grown into a DC bedroom-community -- and I think represents perhaps the most overlooked pick-up opportunity for the House. Greenville County in SC isn't what it used to be, either. Those exceptions don't challenge the thesis -- rather, they prove it.

                  My point though was that Obama's problems may be bigger than that -- because it can't be entirely explained by the Scotch-Irish. There's the Latino problem in the Southwest. Italians and Portuguese in the northeast. Germans and Polish in the midwest. Perhaps, these communities aren't quite as closed to Obama as the Scotch-Irish, but, I suspect the biggest differences do depend on geography. In more mixed communities, those white groups are more open. Plain and simple.

                  Coming Soon -- to an Internet connection near you: Armisticeproject.org

                  by FischFry on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:37:46 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Wisconsin... (3+ / 0-)

                    It has some very strong ethnic communities...German, Swiss and others. Its also very rural in many of these small communities and very white. They voted strongly for Obama.

                    •  Careful (0+ / 0-)

                      Obama cleaned up in Madison and Milwaukee, and their environs. Not so much across the state.

                      Coming Soon -- to an Internet connection near you: Armisticeproject.org

                      by FischFry on Mon May 12, 2008 at 03:27:17 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  Exactly. And GOP crossover was huge (0+ / 0-)

                        as it historically has been in many a race in Wisconsin (see 1964 primary).  The neocon talk radio and bloggers called for that crossover this year, again.  And then the state reverted to its usual ways -- where the Republican Party was founded, after all -- when the first AA justice on the state supreme court was run off the bench by a horrible, Willie Horton-like neocon campaign, only weeks after the presidential primary.

                        McCain is well ahead of Obama in Wisconsin now.  The closest state in 2004 is looking like it very well could go back to being red, but for Milwaukee and Madison.  The question always is whether those are enough.

                        "Let all the dreamers wake the nation." -- Carly Simon

                        by Cream City on Mon May 12, 2008 at 04:14:09 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                      •  Re-writing history there (2+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        askew, rian90

                        http://www.cnn.com/...

                        Clinton won just counties in Wisconsin. Obama cleaned up in the entire state. Polls out of Wisconsin don't show "McCain well ahead of Obama." They show McCain 4 points ahead of both Obama and Clinton. Obama in almost all of the state, including Green Bay.

                        Obama/Casey, my personal dream ticket.

                        by The Bagof Health and Politics on Mon May 12, 2008 at 05:41:26 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                      •  He won my family's county... (0+ / 0-)

                        and its a tiny rural dairy farm area.

            •  My point was that in the border states (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Allogenes

              Except from a showing in Northern Arizona (maybe southern Utah, too?), where Obama took over 55%, it's almost solid 'black' through the border states (California, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas -- you can even add much of Nevada and Utah in there). Hardly any green, regardless of population density. So, if won more than those few counties, they were very close margins. More likely there weren't a lot more wins to add in (in the less than 55% range -- a couple of states were more than two candidate races, but still...) The northeast is noticeably missing much green, too -- but, as I said, few of those states are likely to be in play.

              As for the point being made about population density -- that's not totally irrelevant, but most of the biggest cities are located in solid Democratic states. I'm talking about areas where the cities aren't that big, so they don't skew the Electoral vote the way New York City does.

              Coming Soon -- to an Internet connection near you: Armisticeproject.org

              by FischFry on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:11:30 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  Well, to be fair... (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            faithfull

            YOU did break down the states into prevalence of Baptists versus Methodists -- though you saved any actual analysis of roots of the voter-preference differences for later. I wasn't saying it was literally based in religion. Call it sectarian, or cultural, or even ethnic-based, with respect to the Scotch-Irish heritage. I was using it as a short-hand for all of that, based on your identification as religious denomination being a perceptible dividing line.

            What I was saying is that the maps are troubling beyond Appalachia. As for Appalachia, having lived there before, I could've told you that Obama wasn't going to do well anywhere, and wasn't surprised to see the pattern begin to emerge with the Potomac primaries. You may be cute in saying they have an Obama problem -- and that's true to an extent. But, it's also true that Obama's going to have to break through and win some votes there.

            Coming Soon -- to an Internet connection near you: Armisticeproject.org

            by FischFry on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:55:32 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  Uh you missed the Pacific Northwest and the Plain (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      greeseyparrot

      states of Idaho and Wyoming, but why bother expanding his base of support since that takes away from your argument right?

      •  Actually, I didn't (0+ / 0-)

        Northwest, see:  

        "his appeal is in the Northwest and the Solid South"

        and

        Midwestern or, to use your term, Plain States, see:

        "plus a couple of midwestern states, and a small number of counties in the other midwestern states"

        Coming Soon -- to an Internet connection near you: Armisticeproject.org

        by FischFry on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:58:13 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Thank you, a very informative post n/t (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    GN1927, DiedInSuburbia, bkdealer
  •  Scandinavian/Dutch/German rooted folks (5+ / 0-)

    seem to be culturally open to Obama, as evidenced by his success in the Upper Midwest and Mountain West. Tolerance seems to be a part of these folks culturally, and has been for a long time. Remember the progressive movement started in Wisconsin. Not to mention their industriousness has led them to wide prosperity in their migration from Europe. But, remember, these folks also settled onto some of the most fertile and bountiful land on earth.

    But those of the Scotch-Irish/Highlander stock moved to America and got the shit end of the stick by getting stuck in the much less fertile hills. And they've been stuck there ever since.

    I'm black, and therefore automatically vote exclusively for black candidates. You're white and choose only based on the issues.

    by brooklynbadboy on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:41:29 PM PDT

    •  Central Texas too (0+ / 0-)

      Germans were a big influence on that area.

    •  They didn't get "stuck" there... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tmo

      These people moved to the mountains to get away from government influence and control.

      This is why it's rather spurious to say that the "government" has forgotten these people...that was the plan of their ancestors.  That worked out well for them.

      The World is my country, all mankind are my brethren, and to do good is my religion. --Thomas Paine

      by David Kroning on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:45:22 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  That's where (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      wishingwell

      my father's family was from after moving west after the Revolutionary War, for a long time.  Then, in the 1830's they came to Indian Territory, where we've been ever since.  But they brought a lot of that Scotch Irish culture with them, especially in the southern parts of Arkansas and Oklahoma.  There are areas there still, that if you aren't someone's cousin or whatever, you don't go to.  They are very clannish.

    •  I'd agree, if only from personal experience with (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      wishingwell

      the Minnesotans. At leas I never heard / saw all that many racial jokes or casual racism when I was living up there.

    •  I can testify that Obama is popular in Sweden (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      wishingwell, Krush

      where I live. Kind of off topic but anyway...

      Conservatism = greed, hate, fear and ignorance

      by Joe B on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:18:12 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Remember the progressive movement (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      brooklynbadboy

      was Republicans, in the state where the party was founded.  And the progressives really only had Madison.  Milwaukee was Socialist; northern Wisconsin was Populist.  And all three of those political heritages are still very strong in their regions of the state today.

      And the second-largest population group in the state, behind Germans, is not your Dutch or Scandinavians.  It's us Scots-Irish.  (We don't say Scotch.)

      "Let all the dreamers wake the nation." -- Carly Simon

      by Cream City on Mon May 12, 2008 at 04:17:11 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Must be the moonshine and inbreeding (0+ / 0-)

    Just kidding. I'm sure DHinMI will come up with a logical explanation.

  •  hey, can I get an Episcopalian map? (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Krush, droogie6655321, butchergirl

    John W. McCain, Bush's third term.

    by aaraujo on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:41:43 PM PDT

    •  No (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      decembersue, Zebras

      This is only a map of people who actually go to church.

      •  We go to church (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        wishingwell, butchergirl, llamaRCA

        but then spend most of the time at coffee hour

        John W. McCain, Bush's third term.

        by aaraujo on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:50:22 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Well, coffee hour is the eighth sacrament (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          aaraujo, Krush

          And  summer barbeque & blues fest and the Celtic Fest are also feast days, as is the beginning day of the minor league baseball season. (Only if your town has a minor league)

          See the happy moron, He doesn't give a damn. I wish I were a moron, My God! Perhaps I am! -- Dorothy Parker

          by Rogneid on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:06:33 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  yes coffee hour is a vital part of the service (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Rogneid

            we noticed that when we first starting going to an Episcopal church 6 years ago. Coffee hour is just something one goes to if they attended mass that day.
            It is rather like pot luck dinners for Methodists when I was a kid growing up Methodist.

            Fundies just take their coffee with them into their services ! I laugh at some of the mega churches with their coffee and juice bars in the lobby.
            I would not want to be their Janitor!

            But that is the only thing I liked when I went with a friend to an Evangelical church. You can eat a donut in the lobby before church and take your coffee right into the service with you.  LOL!!!

            Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter. Martin Luther King Jr.

            by wishingwell on Mon May 12, 2008 at 03:12:43 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  How odd (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Rogneid

              Usually on a Sunday, you don't have anything to eat until after the Eucharist.

              After that you head on downstairs to coffee hour where you eat bagels and chat about everything and anything like a real life open thread.

              John W. McCain, Bush's third term.

              by aaraujo on Mon May 12, 2008 at 03:53:50 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Used to be Episkies did that, but we went (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                aaraujo

                all liberal like after the mid-70's. And the Old Orignal Pancake House opened nearby and we wen't there to pass time before the 11am service.  Dutch Babies...mmmmmmm.

                See the happy moron, He doesn't give a damn. I wish I were a moron, My God! Perhaps I am! -- Dorothy Parker

                by Rogneid on Mon May 12, 2008 at 09:00:43 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

              •  yes when I saw fundies having coffee during (0+ / 0-)

                the service, I laughed.

                Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter. Martin Luther King Jr.

                by wishingwell on Tue May 13, 2008 at 11:42:38 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

    •  Link is In the Post (0+ / 0-)

      The revolution will not be televised, but we'll analyze it to death at The Next Hurrah.

      by Dana Houle on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:50:33 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  The maps are great but timing is everything.... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      aaraujo

       I think by the time November rolls around the Republican base (or the bottom feeders as we say) will be voting for Paul or Barr or the ghost of Strom Thurman. So, it really doesn't matter who the Democrat is. That's why I'm supporting Obama. We have a chance to make real change where we don't have to compromise our basic beliefs and hold our nose in the voting booth. This is this generation's chance to start making things better rather than just trying to keep them from getting worse. Does anyone seriously think that America is going to elect John McCain? For Republicans to vote for him they don't only have to hold their noses, they have to close their eyes.

      Everybody eats, nobody hits.

      by upperleftedge on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:55:18 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Cletus and Cooper (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Krush

    are not going to decide the Democratic nomination, m'kay?

    John W. McCain, Bush's third term.

    by aaraujo on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:42:34 PM PDT

  •  Appalachian decendent for OBAMA! (13+ / 0-)

    I'm an Appalachian decendent.
    I graduated from an Appalachian college.
    I never once considered Senator Clinton.
    I've been on board for Obama since 2004.

    "Take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented." - Elie Wiese

    by Vote On Paper on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:43:11 PM PDT

  •  Holy cow! (0+ / 0-)

    I didn't know we were THAT infested with Baptists!  And they're mild compared to the REAL nut cases!  No wonder my daughter moved to New Jersey.

    •  It ain't called the "Bible Belt" for nothin. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Allogenes

      The World is my country, all mankind are my brethren, and to do good is my religion. --Thomas Paine

      by David Kroning on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:46:13 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  But Baptist denominations are not all Fundy (0+ / 0-)

      My friend belongs to a Baptist church is Non Evangelical. It is more like a Presbyterian or Methodist Church.

      There are Southern Baptists which differ from other more liberal or moderate Baptist churches.

      There are Evangelical Baptists which are not Fundamentalists and Fundy, Neo Con Baptists of the Falwell Variety.

      I have a friend who attends a rather liberal Baptist church. My parents attended a rather moderate Baptist church which was not Fundamentalist and then I know a relative who attends Southern Baptist church....the differences are Quite Noticeable!!!!

      Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter. Martin Luther King Jr.

      by wishingwell on Mon May 12, 2008 at 03:17:14 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  big difference between Appalachia and the South (0+ / 0-)

    even though a lot of the South is in Appalachia.

    please read my diary for more

    www.dailykos.com/story/2008/5/12/105640/186/458/514154

    also go to www.actblue.com/page/vivianfigures

  •  Read Jim Webb! (6+ / 0-)

    Hello from Appalachia!

    To get a better handle on who these people are and where they are coming from, read Jim Webb's excellent popular history Born Fighting: How the Scots-Irish Shaped America, now available in paperback!

    Molly Ivins wanted WHO for President?

    by Positronicus on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:46:19 PM PDT

  •  I love colored maps! (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    missLotus, cari, Krush, butchergirl

    They are the best!

    •  Me too! Confession - I love getting the National (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      cari

      Geographic maps but then I don't have anywhere to display them so they go in the magazine pile. But they are so pretty.

      -5.25, -6.31 "Fascism is capitalism plus murder." - Upton Sinclair

      by butchergirl on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:02:22 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  THAT was fun to read N/T (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Krush, butchergirl
  •  DHinMI (5+ / 0-)

    You don't get it. You're using data that says one thing to extrapolate it to mean something else. You don't have a single map that actually measures race-based decisions.

    It would be great if you put your time in to actually figuring out the complex issues behind the support of Hillary Clinton in this region instead of just going with the stereotyped view of Appalachia. You're oversimplifying because of your Appalachia problem.

    You have nothing. NOTHING. to show that Appalachia has an Obama problem because all it shows is that they like Clinton more.

    You have nothing here to show what it would be like if Obama vs. McCain.

    You're doing nothing to help Obama politically by ignoring the class issues. Certainly Obama has a better grasp of this than you as does Howard Dean.

    And you're seemingly intent to try to justify Appalachian bigotry for God knows why when it's so stupid of you to do so from a political standpoint that it seems you're infected with the Democratic madness to form a circular firing squad after shooting yourself in the foot to aid Republicans.

    I'll quote from Brad at Sadly No!:

    And this brings me back to why Oliver’s take on this is so stupid. Dude, we’re trying to convince people to support Team Blue in the fall. Stereotyping everyone in West Virginia as a brain-dead goober is a poor strategy for getting them to vote for our candidate. Instead of simply dismissing all Clinton supporters as bigoted hicks, folks in the Obama camp should examine how her emphasis on progressive domestic policy issues such as implementing universal health care and placing a temporary freeze on subprime foreclosures has helped her win over white blue-collar Democrats. And while I’m sure there will be a small, insignificant minority of Clinton supporters who won’t vote for Obama because he’s black, I think the vast majority of them will be receptive to him if he can make his case.

    Considering the heart of Appalachia in a predominantly white McDowell County has elected a black man as state delegate who serves assistant Majority Whip in West Virginia and that the same district you highlight as racist keeps sending an Arab American to Congress proves to me it's much more complex than you're able to grasp despite all your efforts to distract with maps that don't prove what you think they prove.

    "There is nothing more stimulating than a case where everything goes against you." S.H.

    by Carnacki on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:49:38 PM PDT

    •  Sigh (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      askew, wishingwell, beltane, butchergirl

      So, you're saying only Appalachia has working class whites?

      Sorry, no.  

      The revolution will not be televised, but we'll analyze it to death at The Next Hurrah.

      by Dana Houle on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:52:08 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I thought the analysis was spot on DHinMI n/t (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        wishingwell

        -5.25, -6.31 "Fascism is capitalism plus murder." - Upton Sinclair

        by butchergirl on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:57:41 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  No (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        ksh01, faithfull

        Are you saying we should write off California because it is filled with racists who have an "Obama problem?" New York? New Hampshire?

        You've oversimplying it because you're bigoted when it comes to Appalachian Americans.

        You latch on to the most negative stereo type because you refuse to see complex issues involving class issues, that might make Obama look bad, that maybe they like Hillary Clinton because they like her healthcare plan which is better for poor people than Obama's, that maybe they like her because she's better known to them through Bill Clinton's presidency.

        "There is nothing more stimulating than a case where everything goes against you." S.H.

        by Carnacki on Mon May 12, 2008 at 05:14:29 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Yes, I'm Bigoted (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          askew, brklyngrl

          And of course that's been evident all along.

          And you're not ignoring the realities that WV will not vote for Obama tomorrow, and that it will almost certainly give him his worst defeat of the entire campaign, because only West Virginia is working class or something.  

          I don't think racism is simple.  I don't think the reason people in Appalachia aren't voting for Obama is only because of racism, and it may not be primarily because of racism.  But to claim that race just can't conceivably be a factor in why it's the only part of the country other than the Ozarks (where Clinton's husband was Governor) where he's losing 2-1 and that it's only class is an act of willful delusion.  

          Sorry.  I like you, despite your bullshit accusation against me that I'm bigoted.  You're better than that single comment.  But you're being pollyanna here.  

          The revolution will not be televised, but we'll analyze it to death at The Next Hurrah.

          by Dana Houle on Mon May 12, 2008 at 06:34:53 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  Carnacki is an expert on Appalachia (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Carnacki

        You are not.

        And you can definitely bring something to the table to converse with people who are FROM the region, but to dismiss so many of us and ignore the good points that several of us have made is absurd.

        Oh, the hills are groaning with excess, like a table ceaselessly being set.

        by faithfull on Mon May 12, 2008 at 05:41:43 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  This is all pretty easy to explain (7+ / 0-)

    I live in Western Maryland (Hagerstown, Washington County, Maryland). It's Appalachia. The city, which has a small African American Enclave, vote 48-41-11 for Clinton/Obama/Edwards-Uncommitted. The County voted 51-37-12 for the same.

    The problem isn't so much racism as it's poverty. People are impoverished. They use food stamps. They fear being evicted or foreclosed. There's a lot of fear here. Big time fear.

    Hillary Clinton, like George W. Bush before her, has run a campaign that has exploited these fears. Obama's optimiistic message strikes all but the die-hard liberals here as naive. They've been promised so much, and still screwed over, so they're cynical and hardened.

    It should also be noted that Bush won this region overwhelmingly. There were counties where Bush got >75% of the vote here. If Hillary Clinton can take the anger she's managed to coral from Appalachia and get people to think about their own self-interest again, then her campaign has some redeeming value. Whether she does that or not is an open question.  

    Obama/Casey, my personal dream ticket.

    by The Bagof Health and Politics on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:49:44 PM PDT

  •  Appalachia is not homogenous (11+ / 0-)

    I've said this before but it bears repeating. Demographics only get you so far. There are essential distinctions to be made on the basis of history and culture that do not necessarily show up in a limited statistical set.

    Among these is the absolutely crucial distinction between Appalachians north and south of the Ohio River / Mason Dixon Line. South of that line, racism is an undeniable large factor. North of that line, it is not a large factor, as this territory was, after all, settled by Underground Railroad operators and liberated African-American slaves.

    The Clinton margins in south Ohio and Pennsylvania were not produced in the same way as her margins in WV and KY will be produced. I see the difference, as I'm near the boundary line.

    In Ohio and PA, the Clintons played the old rural machine politics, greatly assisted by Strickland and Rendell, and by their experience in the region from 1992 and 1996. They did play religion as a factor -- with Clinton's famous non-denial denial about whether Obama is a Muslim -- but they did not play race. They are smarter than that.

    In WV and KY, the Clintons are playing race.

    The importance of this distinction is that Obama can do just fine in Appalachian Ohio and Pennsylvania in the general, once he can spend time in the region and get the damned Muslim slanders behind him. He need not avoid the region as a whole.

  •  This may too simplistic... (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tmo, wishingwell, faithfull, Terra Mystica

    ...and I don't claim to be an expert on Appalachia even though I grew up in NC not far from that area. But, I think one factor in the Clinton vs. Obama contest in this area is familiarity. My sense of the people in that area is that they are very suspicious of the new and the unfamiliar. They have had nearly two decades of familiarity with Hillary (and Bill) Clinton. Obama is an unknown. He just came on the scene and they know very little about him. I don't think Obama would have changed their view of him if he had spent more time in WV. It would take more than a few campaign stops for them to warm up to him.

  •  You can't beat around the 'bush' with these folks (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    drmonkey, Craig Hickman, CalexanderJ

    Come out and tell 'em this, "

    Look, call him a spade, a nigger, a black so and so, but pull that damn lever and vote for him.  Black folks have had to do the same thing as we're asking you to do.  And they did it 'cause it was in their best interest to vote for the man.  So smile, cuss under your breath, but pulling the obama lever will benefit you and yours.

    "

    Straight talk.  Find a Veep who can talk this talk.

    Strong unions for a strong America

    by realwischeese on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:51:29 PM PDT

  •  Well, I would say the 'problem' (0+ / 0-)

    is staring at them in the mirror.

  •  Hey did ya see... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tmo, wishingwell, Allogenes

    that Colorado was all Obama??

    I am telling you that if Denver and Boulder and the Mountain communities come out big we are going to be a deep blue. I can not tell you how much that will pain the Colorado Springs Family First crowd. LOL or how much that will thrill me.

    Obama Pasters - Denver, CO.

    Live, live, live!! Life is a banquet and most poor suckers are starving to death.

    by COwoman on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:52:29 PM PDT

  •  Thank you for this... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    wishingwell, Allogenes

    I don't necessary agree with all of your conclusions, but its heads and tales better than the crap from the MSM "analysts." Have you seen the valpo maps page? It's pretty cool.

  •  Appalachia ... a natural for John Edwards! (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tmo, Hapa Nagila

    Yeah, I know, he didn't win the primary in his home state.  But, I think in the #2 slot, he could mend some fences there.  Plus his economic platform is desperately needed for that struggling area.

    "The extinction of the human race will come from its inability to EMOTIONALLY comprehend the exponential function." -- Edward Teller

    by lgmcp on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:53:04 PM PDT

  •  The Appalachian Strategy (6+ / 0-)

    I wrote back on March 6th on the "Appalachian Aberration in the Democratic Primary.

    The most egregious example of Obama's underperformance is in Virginia, where he won the state by 29% but lost the VA-09 (the Appalachian part of Virginia) by 31%. He performed 61% worse in the Appalachian part of the same state.

    But there were a couple of things that didn't happen:

    1. There was no direct campaigning by Obama in SWVA. He never went there, partly because of a spate of wildfires the days leading up to the primary. Bill Clinton did campaign in SWVA.
    1. There was no extremely organized GOTV operation for Obama (to my knowledge) outside of Blacksburg
    1. He did not address mountaintop removal mining, which has destroyed over 474 mountains in Appalachia, and polluted more than 1200 miles of streams
    1. The Appalachian people are not just "racist." We may be racially "inexperienced," but having lived in the mountains and in lowland Tennessee, I can say that - albeit anecdotally - that malignnant racism is much worse in the lowland south.
    1. A built in demographic disadvantage to Clinton
    1. Appalachia is (rightly) suspicious and slow to warm to anyone percieved as a "flash in the pan" candidate offering an overnight solution.

    I'm as strident an Obama supporter as they come, and I also spend my life studying, writing about, and working to protect the Appalachian mountains. But I also happen to think that Appalachia is the single most important geographic region in American electoral politics. Between the Appalachian parts of Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia, WV, NC, TN, and KY, we have the ability to bag 70 electoral votes.

    Obama needs to GO to Appalachia and campaign vigorously there. Contrary to popular belief, Appalachia has a mixed - an often extremely progressive -  history on racial issues. And I think that needs to be acknowledged.

    Lastly, the Obama campaign has not done a lot to address Appalachia in the primary or general election. They need to talk about bringing good renewable energy jobs to this area as we phase out coal. Talk about ending mountaintop removal and restoring our local economies based on alternative economic development and tourism. Talk about ending endemic Appalachian poverty. There is a long road ahead, and I hope Obama will come here and start to engage the people of Appalachia in a serious way, and with serious policy solutions to end our environmental, economic, and energy crisies in Appalachia.

    Oh, the hills are groaning with excess, like a table ceaselessly being set.

    by faithfull on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:53:46 PM PDT

    •  Thanks, faithfull. (4+ / 0-)

      I, too, hope the Obama campaign will engage Appalachia in a serious way.  Even if we didn't win the state in 2008, his work would build the foundation for us to move forward to claim it another year.

      I also think that addressing the economic/environmental/energy issues in Appalachia would just be damn good politics.  

      ...just another hooligan from the Dalai clique

      by RadioGirl on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:04:12 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  A majority of WVians oppose mountaintop removal (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        wishingwell, Terra Mystica, RadioGirl

        Since mountaintop removal actually means fewer mining jobs, we could rid ourselves of that horrible practice,  and start brining in good high paying green jobs in industrial wind and solar while still providing America its energy.

        And remember, its not just one state. Central and Southern Appalachia contain the most important parts of OH, VA, NC, TN, KY, and arguably PA as well.

        peace,
        faithfull

        Oh, the hills are groaning with excess, like a table ceaselessly being set.

        by faithfull on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:06:54 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Right or Wrong (0+ / 0-)

      The campaign made a decision to ignore Appalachia, at least in the primary.

      Because of the FL and MI debacle which didn't allow him to campaign in those states in the primary, he's got to make up a lot of lot time in those important states.

      Consider this an excuse, but I don't think he's got the time to campaign heavily there, if at all, before the general.

      •  No time? (0+ / 0-)

        You mean he can't get here a few times in the next 6 months?! And hire some organizers to work on issues in these states? If he isn't in Ohio, PA, VA, NC, and WV then where is he?

        Oh, the hills are groaning with excess, like a table ceaselessly being set.

        by faithfull on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:53:56 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Appalachia -- the south without blacks (0+ / 0-)

    The real problem for Obama in Appalachia is that the people there have similar attitudes towards race as elsewhere in the south, but far fewer blacks.  TN is only 10% black, so its not surprising she won there by 13%.

    The outcome in TN-WV-KY is a preview of the general election results in the south, when the percentage of african american voters will drop to well below 50%.  Obama did worse among white voters in Mississippi than anywhere in appalachia.

    •  Obama in Appalachian Tennessee (0+ / 0-)

      Outside of Hamilton and Knox counties in TN-01, TN-02, and TN-03 (Appalachian Tennessee) Obama performed 30% worse than he did in the rest of the state.

      Oh, the hills are groaning with excess, like a table ceaselessly being set.

      by faithfull on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:08:21 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

        •  Here (0+ / 0-)

          Just some back of the napkin math (and I'm no mathematician). By my count, Obama lost the state by 13 and the following counties 74%-26% (48%).

          COUNTY OBAMA (26%) CLINTON (74%) TOTAL VOTES %
          Anderson 2558 (34%) 4886 (66%) 7444 (Clinton+32 )
          Bledsoe 195(12%) 1399 (88%) 1594 (Clinton+76 )
          Blount 3090 (35%) 5717 (65%) 8807 (Clinton+30 )
          Bradley 1625 (28%) 4139 (72%) 5764 (Clinton+44 )
          Campbell 326 (10%) 2854 (90%) 3180 (Clinton+80 )
          Carter 745 (24%) 2366 (76%) 3111 (Clinton+52 )
          Clairborne 276 (11%) 2138 (89%) 2414 (Clinton+78 )
          Cocke 440 (19%) 1835 (81%) 2275 (Clinton+62)
          Grangier 249 (16%) 1341 (84%) 1590 (Clinton+68 )
          Greene 1038 (25%) 3181 (75%) 4219 (Clinton+50 )
          Hamblen 1094 (25%) 3302 (75%) 4396 (Clinton+50 )
          Hancock 56 (19%) 240 (81%) 296 (Clinton+62 )
          Hawkins 650 (20%) 2623 (80%) 3273 (Clinton+60 )
          Jefferson 775 (24%) 2470 (76%) 3245 (Clinton+52 )
          Johnson 214 (26%) 600 (74%) 814 (Clinton+48 )
          Loudon 1027 (29%) 2459 (71%) 3486 (Clinton+24 )
          McMinn 897 (25%) 2637 (75%) 3534 (Clinton+50 )
          Monroe 719 (21%) 2628 (79%) 3347 (Clinton+58 )
          Polk 348 (14%) 2154 (86%) 2502 (Clinton+72 )
          Rhea 405 (17%) 2026 (83%) 2431 (Clinton+66 )
          Roane 1350 (27%) 3733 (73%) 5083 (Clinton+46 )
          Sevier 1245 (26%) 3568 (74%) 4813 (Clinton+48 )
          Sullivan 2541 (29%) 6162 (71%) 8703 (Clinton+42 )
          Unicoi 205 (22%) 736 (78%) 941 (Clinton+56 )
          Union 155 (10%) 1322 (90%) 1477 (Clinton+80 )
          Washington 3258 (36%) 5731 (64%) 8989 (Clinton+28 )
          25,481 (26%) 72,247 (74%) 97,728 Clinton +54
          Knox 16849 (47%) 19064 (53%) 35913 (Clinton+6 )
          Hamilton 19831 (54%) 16562 (46%) 36393 (Obama+8 )

          The Percentages only include the Clinton/Obama vote percentages, and does not include Edwards, Dodd, Richardson, or any other candidate. This will, in my opinion, be more likely to pad Obama’s percentage than Clinton’s.

          Counties where Clinton won by less than 30% are Loudon County and Washington County.
          Loudon County, which borders Knox County and Knoxville, and includes Lenoir. Washignton County is home to East Tennessee State University and Johnson City.

          Oh, the hills are groaning with excess, like a table ceaselessly being set.

          by faithfull on Mon May 12, 2008 at 03:20:54 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  but it doesn't seem to have a correlation (0+ / 0-)

            if you look at this chart I don't see a pattern where she performed better in the eastern mountains.  She did well in all rural areas and lost badly in Memphis (which is where the blacks in the state live) and lost two other cities (Knoxville and Chatanooga).

            •  Cool map (0+ / 0-)

              I wish the color coding was deeper. It does look like the rural vote performance is pretty similar in W TN and E TN. Color me curious, and I'll check that out.

              Obama winning Chattanooga/Hamilton County was a big deal. Thats where I'm from, and I was really glad to see it.

              Oh, the hills are groaning with excess, like a table ceaselessly being set.

              by faithfull on Mon May 12, 2008 at 03:44:29 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

  •  Countering the "whites like Hillary" line (5+ / 0-)

    I've always just answered with "Then why did Utah and Idaho vote for Obama?  I'm pretty sure the Democrats in those states are overwhelmingly white.  And what about Obama's white support in Central TX and KS?  Or do those white people not count?"

    And I have to agree, the only place where Obama seems to have an actual problem getting white support is in Appalachian areas.  But I also find it intriguing that, after Super Tuesday, nobody was asking why Hillary couldn't win Rocky Mountain whites.

    All your vote are belong to us.

    by Harkov311 on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:55:02 PM PDT

  •  But what about Michigan? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Krush, Texas Blue Dot

    Why does Obama, and to a lesser extent Hillary, perform so badly against McCain here?

    Conservatism = greed, hate, fear and ignorance

    by Joe B on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:55:11 PM PDT

  •  Maybe not god, guns and gays this time (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    wishingwell, gloryous1, beltane, RadioGirl

    That's what I am hoping.  Considering the state of our country and our economy, I think if Obama works it right, he will be able to get them over this tendency to vote against their own best self-interest.

    Furthermore, many of the voters currently supporting Hillary Clinton simply prefer her to Obama.

    I think this is really important and one that Hillary doesn't want us to think about.  Every time I hear someone say "well he couldn't take California" I want to barf.  For two reasons.  The first is that the Democrats in California will be fine voting for Obama and the second is because the voters in California have a serious case of buyers remorse.  I'm betting if the California primary were to be held today, Obama would beat Hillary by a very wide margin.  

    Early on in this race Hillary pretty much won on name recognition alone.  Then people started getting to know Obama and the tide started turning.  Then Hillary showed us her true face and the Tsunami towards Obama began.  The election was Hillary's to lose (she started out 20% ahead of everyone) and lose it she did.

    •  Obama held to standards no other nominee was (0+ / 0-)

      Every time I hear someone say "well he couldn't take California" I want to barf.

      I agree. Obama is being held to an irrationally high standard which no other nominee was. Hillary Clinton is being babied and coddled the way no losing candidate ever has been.

      John McCain lost states to his Republican rivals, but no one is calling those "weak areas" and saying that the nomination should go to Romney or Huckabee instead. John F. Kennedy lost so many states that he didn't win until the last state in the convention roll call.

      The whole comparison to Hillary should be dropped because it is meaningless for November. The way to find out Obama's strengths and weaknesses is by polling him vs. McCain for the general election, not anything to do with the primaries.

      •  Comparing primary might be appropriate after all (0+ / 0-)

        Could it be that while seems unfair, comparing the Democratic Primary results is pertinent in many states because McCain and Clinton are so similar?

        Certainly they are closer in alignment than nearly any of the other Republican candidates are to either Clinton or Obama.  So all the Republican primary results must be thrown out of consideration for the general election.  That is why McCain has an illusory free pass right now...

        I completely agree that a rematch in most early states would yield huge Obama victories now that his name is out there.  In fact, name recognition and real understanding of who he is remains a key problem for his campaign today!

        If Obama spends time in Florida, Michigan, and appalachia in general, he will win more and more of those voters over.  I totally agree that the general election will be different, but I think there is some merit in comparing Clinton's performance to Obama's to help guide strategy going forward.  She has re-aligned hersefl closer to McCain's expected party line.

  •  But but but (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    wishingwell, ManhattanMan, Allogenes

    The media can't swiftboat Obama if he has only an appalachian problem, not a white working class regular people problem!  Don't tell them they have to be truthful!!!  That won't hurt Obama at all!!!

    The only place where Republicans are anywhere close to responsible is in the dictionary.

    by DemDachshund on Mon May 12, 2008 at 01:59:40 PM PDT

  •  1992 + 1996 (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    wishingwell, bten, Terra Mystica

    Bill Clinton won everything from the Ozarks to the Adirondacks both times (not including states that aren't dominated by the region like VA).
    That region has liked Bill <--> Hillary for a long time.

  •  Could someone email this diary... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    wishingwell, Allogenes

    ...to MSNBC, please? I can't take all the pundits talking about whites without mentioning this. They need to be made aware of it.

  •  Obama can easily close on the white... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Allogenes

    working class voter in Applachia and everywhere else, and he is already starting it with moves like this.

    If Obama even starts to take federalist stands on issues like this that appeal to libertarians, or if he even goes so far as even suggesting that the nation needs to take a good hard look at the war on drugs and how it relates to marijuana, he will easily pick up the votes of working class white Americans.

    Its a no brainer and one that I think Obama will make a move towards in the general...

    What we do for ourselves dies with us, what we do for others and the world remains and is immortal. (Albert Pine)

    by laughingriver on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:03:02 PM PDT

  •  A book written by David Hackett Fischer (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DHinMI, Allogenes

    titled "Albion's Seed", 1989, Oxford University Press explains why the Applachian people are acculturated the way they are.  Jane Smiley did a fascinating blog on HuffPo and reviewed it.  I refer you all to read it, well worth the time. "Jane's Bingo! Award for Most Informative Book of 2006".  Put this title in the Search box at http://www.huffingtonpost.com.

    The ignorance of one voter in a democracy impairs the security of all - JFK- 5/18/63-Vanderbilt Univ.

    by oibme on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:05:22 PM PDT

    •  I've Read It... (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      wishingwell, oibme, Allogenes

      ...and it informs my analysis.  I've referred to it in the past, and will again in a future post.

      The revolution will not be televised, but we'll analyze it to death at The Next Hurrah.

      by Dana Houle on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:12:37 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I'm very happy that my Scots-Irish ancesters (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        DHinMI, Allogenes

        chose to emigrate to New England so when I came along, I would grow up to be a liberal Democrat=).

        The ignorance of one voter in a democracy impairs the security of all - JFK- 5/18/63-Vanderbilt Univ.

        by oibme on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:20:58 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  It informed my analysis too (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        DHinMI, tmo, Allogenes

        In this diary, and this one, and this one. :-)

        "The great lie of democracy, its essential paradox, is that democracy is first to be sacrificed when its security is at risk." --Ian McDonald

        by Geenius at Wrok on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:36:32 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  I'm amused that half the commenters (0+ / 0-)

        on this thread are using race-based analyses of history to provide an explanation of the Clinton vote, in order to deny race is a motivator.

        "We're not whites who hate blacks, honest! We're Celts who hate Saxons!"

        Maybe I'm easy amused :-)

        On a more technical note, while I liked your multiple 55% and 65% maps, have you thought of using subtle shading to combine them? Purple could be 65%, while a slightly less saturated purple could be the 55% "penumbra".

        We don't want a radically different color: as Edward Tufte says in Visual Explanations, the ideal for information displays is the "smallest effective difference".

    •  Link for search-impaired folks (0+ / 0-)

      http://www.huffingtonpost.com/...

      Fascinating article, thanks for pointing to it. There's an interesting comment in the article that implies that part of the reason the Scots-Irish ended up isolated in the mountains is that they were too violent to live peacefully with other descendants of Britain. That's a bit of a different take than the commonly held one that they isolated themselves for the purposes of religious freedom.

      A word after a word after a word is power. -- Margaret Atwood

      by tmo on Mon May 12, 2008 at 05:05:05 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Race, class, religion and region (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DHinMI, Allogenes

    The media has focused mostly on race and class, and somewhat on religion, but hardly at all on region. If you look mostly at the first two, and a bit on religion, you might come to the conclusion that Obama will have a hard time winning in November. But if you also include region, and other factors, this conclusion just doesn't add up. Not to say that these aren't important ones, but there are MANY dimensions with which one can group voters, and these are simply the easiest and most comfortable ones for the establishment media to fixate on.

    I'd love to know what political analyst Kevin Phillips, who in 1968 wrote the seminal political book The Emerging Republican Majority, in which he broke down the electorate along complex dimensional lines, and tried to show (successfully, it turned out) how this indicated a new era of Republican and conservative dominance, has to say about all this. I'm guessing that he believes that Obama not only can win, but will win, as things currently stand (i.e. there will be no spectacular revelations or developments and/or massive electoral manipulation).

    It's also useful to note that most of the states in which Obama has done or will do poorly (but also some of the ones in which he's done well), are ones that he will almost certainly not be able to win in the general. E.g. WV, KY, TN, GA, SC. And many of the states that he lost in the primaries, he will certainly or likely win in the general. E.g. NY, CA, NH, AR. The same would be true for Hillary were she the nominee--she would not have won KY, TN or TX.

    Bottom line, one can come up with any conclusions by selectively applying only those filters and criteria that support those conclusions. But when one applies all the filters and criteria that pertain to this election, the results are quite different, and far more favorable to Obama.

    "I will vote for the Democratic candidate for president--period." --Me

    by kovie on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:05:34 PM PDT

  •  These maps are a bit misleading (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Hapa Nagila

    Obama "won" a majority of the people who voted in a caucus or a primary in some areas. That's not the same as doing so in a general election. And I might add that a caucus is a different animal from a primary. So, although it's clear that he has essentially won the nomination, let's not get all giddy about it. He does in fact have a weakness among high school educated whites and older voters at present - at present.

    He has clearly started to make changes in his campaign style as a result of these weaknesses that Clinton has very skillfully exploited. It's great that he has the chance this early to address these issues.

  •  This is toward the end of the thread (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DHinMI

    But let me say this has been as informative a discussion of the underlying dynamics in the race since March as I have seen.

  •  Robert Byrd: The Model for Appalachian Success (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tmo, Terra Mystica

    The most successful Democratic politician in Appalachia has been Robert Byrd.

    That means that Obama, in the fall should adopt a "Byrd-type strategy."

    The simplest, the most basic, and the best method would simply for Obama to get Bryd actively on board as his Appalachia guru, listen to him, and - with respect to Appalachia - do whatever he says.

    Other than that - it means jobs, jobs, jobs, jobs, jobs.

    A new TVA, a new REA, clean coal technology.  That type of thing.  Lots of it.  Stuff of direct, immediate practical benefit to those folks.

    Duncan Kinder http://www.billingsgatereport.net/

    by Duncan Kinder on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:08:00 PM PDT

  •  Excellent post, thank you. n/t (0+ / 0-)

    If you can't drink their whiskey, screw their women, take their money, and vote against 'em anyway, you don't belong in office. - Molly Ivins

    by number six on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:08:28 PM PDT

  •  The maps are weird and possibly wrong? (0+ / 0-)

    Just looking at the maps posted to see where if I could locate my county (Baltimore County,MD) on the map.  I was able to find it on the purple Obama +55% map but curiously I couldn't find Baltimore City.

    I'm trying to find the numbers for Baltimore City in the Maryland Primary but I have a hard time believing Obama got less than 55% of the vote there.

    Where are these maps from anyway because I'm kinda doubting their accuracy right now.

    "When we speak we are afraid our words will not be heard or welcomed. But when we are silent, we are still afraid. So it is better to speak." - Audre Lorde

    by baltogeek on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:08:36 PM PDT

  •  Appalachia had a bit of a Kerry problem too. (4+ / 0-)

    Looking at the general election polling, Obama isn't doing that much worse against McCain than Kerry did against Bush in WV, KY, and TN.  So we can conclude that the percent of the population that would vote for any Democrat except a black one is pretty small in this region.  If we call those Democrats who voted for Bush Soft Democrats, and those who voted for Kerry Hard Democrats, then we can conclude there are few Hard Democrats in Appalachia who are also strongly racist.  

    Among the Soft Democrats, we can't tell how many are not voting for Obama in the primary or general because they are racist, and how many are not voting for Obama for some other reason.  Other reasons could include simply being conservative, and Clinton's or McCain's appeal to folks in the region.

    We know anecdotally there are racist people who won't vote for a black person.  Some even admit it in polls.  There's probably more of them in Appalachia than elsewhere.  We just can't tell for sure how big an effect it is having.

    Here's an experiment it would be nice to run:  a primary in WV with Kerry vs. Clinton.  Would Kerry do better than Obama?  By how much?  We'll never know....

  •  Cartography as Archaeology (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DHinMI, nightsweat, Krush, heliosfootball

    On the maps you show, the counties where HRC has done exceeding well are those parts of "the South" that remained loyal to the Union in the lead up to and during the Civil War (and, as you note) where people from those states settled.  

    These were the parts of Tennessee, Virginia, the Carolinas, Georgia, Alabama and Mississippi, the representatives for which voted against secession in those States' respective secession conventions.  These parts of these states supplied many troops to the Union Army.  

    This is the home country of Andrew Johnson, who as president overturned the award of 40 acres and a mule that various military governors had given to freed slaves, taking the land from rebellious slave owners.  

    These were the parts of those states that were overwhelmingly small-holder yeoman white and which, generally, resented slave owners not only for their wealth and elitism, but because they were responsible for bringing black people to those states.

    And one other point:  Just saying Baptists and Methodists  isn't completely accurate, since each these two sects are split into at least two sub-denominations -- Regular and Southern.  This split happened in the lead up to the Civil War.  

    As northern members of the mainline denominations of Methodists and Baptists began to agitate against slavery, the congregations located in slave states split off, forming their own denominations that were explicitly intended to supply a spiritual and moral basis for African slavery.  Thus you have Southern Baptists and Southern Methodists.

    The split has continued to this day.

    This aggression will not stand, man.

    by kaleidescope on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:14:51 PM PDT

  •  Daaang DH (0+ / 0-)

    Are you channeling Poblano?  Great info-graphics!

    The Republicans were right about one thing - The media is irresponsible.

    by nightsweat on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:16:11 PM PDT

  •  GREAT POST! (0+ / 0-)

    Thanks for all the terrific information.

  •  western north carolina, in appalachia (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    YellerDog

    went to Hillary, despite Obama taking the progressive city of Asheville.  Hillary and Bill both spent a good amount of time here.  I can say from experience that we have some of the lowest information, lowest tech voters in America in this region..

    Those who say it can't be done should get out of the way of those doing it.

    by c0wfunk on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:21:23 PM PDT

  •  my argument to people (0+ / 0-)

    who say obama gets support because of "white guilt" or whatever is al sharpton.

    Those who say it can't be done should get out of the way of those doing it.

    by c0wfunk on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:22:01 PM PDT

  •  Jim Webb (5+ / 0-)

    could really help Obama with Appalachia if he were Obama's running mate.  He would also counter the "no military experience meme" which is almost surely bound to surface.

    Democrats give you the Bill of Rights; Republicans sell you a bill of goods!

    by barbwires on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:24:56 PM PDT

    •  I've thought that all along. Perfect foil to McC. (0+ / 0-)

      But Virginians have argued strongly that they need him in the Senate and that the party does too.

      •  Well, I'm a Virginian (0+ / 0-)

        but I don't mind the idea of sharing Webb with the rest of the country.  

        Democrats give you the Bill of Rights; Republicans sell you a bill of goods!

        by barbwires on Thu May 15, 2008 at 08:57:30 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Generous Virginian! (0+ / 0-)

          Some people argue for Sam Nunn, for some of the same reasons, and perhaps to throw a bone to the old folks. I know he's very good on nukes (now). But I don't see it. That would be like JFK running with some ancient retired Senator rather than with LBJ. Doesn't have the same ring. And suppose something happened to Obama, and he didnt want to retire in favor of Pelis or whoever.

  •  What digby said about working class voters (4+ / 0-)

    I suspect this is simply because people of lesser means associate Clinton with better economic times and they are feeling the pinch of debt and insecurity. The working class is a group that always liked Bill and probably like Hill as a result. (Working class African Americans are probably paying closer attention to Barack's inspiring personal story, for obvious reasons, and are choosing him for affirmative, inspirational reasons, as are many upper class whites.) The MSM and blogospheric echo chamber's tantrums notwithstanding, I don't think it's too much more complicated than that.

    [emphasis mine]

    Source

    Conclusion: the media sucks, but of course you knew that already.

    http://drsquid.blogspot.com

    by Dr Squid on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:26:23 PM PDT

  •  I think WV turnout will be 150,000 (0+ / 0-)

    What's madness but nobility of the soul at odds with circumstance?

    by slinkerwink on Mon May 12, 2008 at 02:27:18 PM PDT

  •  Outstanding intellectual analysis! (0+ / 0-)
  •  Not religion or race (5+ / 0-)

    My family is spread out across eastern Ky, West Virginia, Virginia and I just don't see the racism that everyone in the media seems to be talking about.  Sure, you can find a racist if you look around, but at least my part of Appalachia is coal mining country, and are as far as I can see more concerned with economic issues than racial ones.  People tend to be strong Democrats of the socially conservative, economically liberal variety, and they're extremely aware of workers issues (though the decline of the UMWA over the past 20 years has eaten into the kind of radical political activism I saw as a boy).  

    West Virginia and Eastern Ky voted for Bush over Gore in 2000 for one reason - they feared an environmentalist like Gore would put restrictions on mining coal, and, since coal is the ONLY industry, they voted for the guy they thought would let them mine it.  Its about jobs pure and simple.  These are people who are already poor, who have lived on the margins for 100 years, and who have zero interest in leaving the places they grew up (my family - Hatfields - have lived on the same plot of land since Joseph Hatfield came into the area in 1810).  They want to work, and none of the other Democratic issues make any headway with them.  Convince them that you promote policies that will help them raise their families and they'll vote for you, pure and simple.  They would vote for Clinton over any other opponent white or black simply because they know the Clintons, the last period of real prosperity in the region was under the Clintons, and they're just wary of folks they don't know.

    The media is finding race as the most important issue because they want to.  In all of the talking I've done with family and friends over the past months, no one has ever said anything about not voting for Obama due to race or religion or anything like that.

  •  Appalachia is not about RACE (7+ / 0-)

    I'm Scots-Irish just like Jim Webb and much of Appalachia.  Even if a person from there is not Scots-Irish in DNA, the culture is mostly that group because of the sheer numbers of Scots-Irish in that region.

    As Jim Webb wrote eloqently in his book "Born Fighting",  Scots-Irish culture is extremely independent.   They are a damaged people who lost their country,  Scotland, to the Anglo-Saxon English in the 1600's.  

    It think one huge mistake being made in analysis here is to think Appalachia is a WHITE issue only.  Scots-Irish frequently took Native American and other non-Scot wives.  

    To appeal to these folks you have to understand their contrary nature.   Their distrust of big government goes back to the days of Oliver Cromwell and other English Anglo-Saxons that stole their country.  

    To win the Appalachia vote, a candidate needs to be an outsider trying to defeat the interests holding down the little guy.   Basically the opponent needs to appear to be the hated Anglo-Saxon English of the 1600's.

    Jim Webb is classic Appalachia Scots-Irish.  Bold and sometimes selfless to a fault.  He was a military leader for Reagan but flipped parties when he felt his military was being abused by the GOP.   He married outside of his ethnic group.

    Note that the Bush family are descendents of Puritans.  Puritans under their leader Oliver Cromwell were the most vile and ruthless Anglo-Saxons that every abused a Scot, Irish or Welsh person.

    For more boring history:

    The Anglo-Saxon's forced many of them to Northern Ireland causing the civil war that still simmers to this day.  The Scots-Irish are the Orange Order protestants.  Their enemies are the IRA Roman Catholics who didn't like the Scots being forced on their home country Ireland.   Others Scots were sold as slaves in the West Indies and North America before the African slave trade became a cheaper alternative.  African Americans who came here through the West Indies can easily be part Scot.  The Anglo-Saxons mixed the population of Celts and Africans there.

  •  Looking Only at Primaries - (0+ / 0-)

    Sen. Obama appears to carry only his home region, the Potomac, and the Black Belt in the South.

    A short note about the Black Belt. It got its name from the soil; however, given the fertility of the soil, it was also the center of the antebellum slave economy - thus, the Black Belt also had a majority African American population up until about 1960.  Since then, there has been a significant outmigration of African American from these counties so that only a few dozen remain majority African American.  Interestingly, they are the ones that went Gore and Kerry in 200 and 2004.

  •  GOP crossovers (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    wishingwell

    Don't forget large numbers of GOP crossovers and indeed GOP inclined independents who have no intention of voting democrat in November. Her vote is flattered by their inclusion. The Jed report has a good piece on this looking forward to WV; if that's the right phrase. As much as 25% of her vote in MISS came from GOP crossovers ( not appalachia, I know). Jed mentions that McCain voters were much in evidence also in IN and NC. The same, I'm sure, is true of the Appalachian States.

    •  If anything like Florida... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      wishingwell

      many registered democrats will vote McCain as well, no matter who the democratic nominee might be. I know from knocking on doors this is true in Florida.

      Locally, southern towns often retain the old democratic establishment..but these are very conservative Democrats, in name only. Their views are much closer to Republican views..both economically and on social issues.

      I have had many democrats tell me here that they would never vote for a democratic presidential nominee..but they retain their registration as a democrat due to local politics.

      So I bet many of those people in West Virginia and elsewhere would vote McCain in the general regardless just like they will here in Florida.

  •  Racism (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    wishingwell

    Some in the GOP are racists, mostly they just hate Democrats and especially liberals. The day Obama's "bitter and cling to their guns" came out, my co-worker, a moderate republican blurted "thats decided it for me, I'm voting for McCain"....it was almost like he was waiting for ANY excuse to vote against Obama. The GOP propaganda machine feeds on any negativity they can dig up or make up. Most republicans I know hate McCain but will hold their nose and vote for him anyway.There is no passion for McCain supporters, they are just blah about voting for him.

  •  Just reading DHinMI's (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    dhonig, ridgerunner

    comments on this thread makes me shake my head.  How did someone who handles discussion and criticism so poorly make the front page?

  •  This post typifies why this site is better (0+ / 0-)

    than most extremely well funded media outlets.  How many times have you ever seen CNN, MSNBC or any other large media outlet do this kind of analysis?

    It makes the Jeremiah Wright/flag pin/bitter coverage all the more ridiculous.

  •  Excellent work (0+ / 0-)

    Thanks for a very thoughtful post.  Hope this gets wide exposure.  Love the quotes.

  •  DHinMI, I know this is a well researched (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DHinMI

    diary about the current election, but I got way off track right at the beginning when I clicked the link to your earlier diary about Detroit, your hometown (and mine.)  I have been in exile, mostly  in Texas since 1979, and sometimes I am really homesick for what I think of as the sensible people back in Michigan.  I read through all the comments in the earlier diary too, and think I'll go have a Vernors in honor of good old Motown.  You can buy Vernors and Sanders hot fudge at the local grocery here, but of course it's not quite the same....not bad, though!

    •  That Was an Amazing Thread (0+ / 0-)

      Many places maintain a strong pull on people who've left and moved to other parts of the country, but the pull from Detroit I believe is remarkably strong. You could see it in the comments on that thread.

      It's sort of bittersweet reading that thread, because I'm now gone as well, having moved away a year after I wrote that piece.  

      I'm glad you liked it.  

      The revolution will not be televised, but we'll analyze it to death at The Next Hurrah.

      by Dana Houle on Mon May 12, 2008 at 04:08:08 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Remember: Wilder won many Appalachia Va Counties (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    faithfull, ridgerunner

    There seems to be a tone in the above comments that everybody in Appalachia are too racist to vote for Obama. I don't think, as a generalization, that is fair or true.

    For example, Virginia's Buchanan county borders both Kentucky and West Virginia -- the heart of Appalachia, if you will. It is 97% white and voted for Hillary 91-9 in the Virgina primary. However, Douglas Wilder, the first African American governor of Virginia, one this same county by nearly 20 points in 1989.  

  •  Excellent post (0+ / 0-)

    Thank you and your friend for excellent map work. It was very helpful!

  •  Show me the polls (vs. McCain) (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    faithfull

    The only way to find out Obama's strengths & weaknesses is to stop talking about Hillary and the primaries, and instead run polls of Obama vs. McCain.

  •  This diary is offensive to me (4+ / 0-)

    DHinMI --

    I don't know if you intended it this way, but your diary strong implies that West Virginians are racist. (Following your logic... you assert Obama has a problem with white voters in Appalachia, you show that all of W.Va. is in Appalachia, and the only reason you suggest for Obama's "problem" is racist voters.)

    If you did not intend to call me and my neighbors racist, please clarify. In that case, you should seriously consider updating your diary, as it is easily prone to misunderstanding.

    If you did intend to call me and my neighbors racist, I humbly request an apology. The stated goal of this website is to help elect Democrats. Calling out an entire state as racist is, at a minimum, not helpful to that goal.

    The idea that voting in Appalachia is motivated by racism by a greater amount than anywhere else in the country is unsupported, offensive, and counter-productive.

    If people on this site are going to continue stating (or merely inferring) that the state of West Virginia has more racists than the rest of the country, it's going to take a much higher standard of evidence than what's been shown in this diary (or any other I've seen). As Kos has said, the greater the claim, the greater the proof required.

    -- Proud to be a West Virginian, Clem Gutatta

    •  I'm Dealing with Aggregates (0+ / 0-)

      Appalachia is the only region outside the Ozarks where Obama is losing two to one.  If you want to take the aggregate statistics as saying something about you individually, I'm sorry, but that's your choice.  

      The revolution will not be televised, but we'll analyze it to death at The Next Hurrah.

      by Dana Houle on Mon May 12, 2008 at 06:37:14 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  DHinMI -- Thank you for responding (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Carnacki, faithfull, ridgerunner

        Thank you for responding to my comment.

        I fully accept responsbility for my own reaction to what others write. You are not responsible for my feelings. You are, though, responsible for what your write.

        Not to belabor the point, but I do feel a need to reiterate:

        If you did not intend to call me and my neighbors racist, please clarify. In that case, you should seriously consider updating your diary, as it is easily prone to misunderstanding.

        I am trying to provide constructive feedback. I cannot speak for anyone else--I have given you my own honest reaction to what was written. (Reading through many of the comments I don't think I'm alone in having a potential misunderstanding, but again, I speak only for myself.)

        As a writer, if you find that readers are misunderstanding your intent, you may want to take a close look at your writing to see if there is a better way of communicating what you intend to communicate. As a writer with a large audience, I would take that a step further and say that you have a responsibility to communicate effectively on important subjects--esp. those directly related to the key mission that brings us all together at this site.

        On a substantive note about the diary content, I do not find your aggregate statistics convincing. Here's an analysis I did last week on how the West Virginia demographics are tailor-made for Hillary Clinton.

        If Obama does better than those numbers predict, would that convince you that Obama does not have a region-specific problem?

      •  Repubs are racists? (0+ / 0-)

        DHinMI apparently wants to believe that every white person who dislikes Sen. Obama must be a racist.  Give me a break.  

        From their point of view, Republicans, and a lot of Democrats, have all sorts of reasons that have nothing to do with race: Sen. Obama is pro-choice; he has a very liberal voting record; he is perceived as weak on defense and too considerate of our, and Israel's, fiercest enemies; and his buddies include a preacher with extremely anti-American views, an unrepetant domestic terrorist, and a crooked wheeler-dealer.

        Maybe they dislike politicians who can't remember how to spell the plural of potato or can't remember that the USA has 50 states, not 57.  

        What's so racist about these dislikes?  

  •  I think Obama could win Kentucky (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    BrighidG

    maybe not VS clinton, but in the general, I think he could have a decent shot

  •  Well (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    faithfull

    Could it be because Obama and his supporters really have tried to talk with those voters? Could it be that a lot of his supporters have indirectly or directly thumbed their nose at these voters?

  •  I dont think there is anything Obama can do (0+ / 0-)

    It may be ugly but its a honest assessment that some (I would venture to guess roughly 30%) of White voters simply will not vote for a black man. They will say one thing in the daylight but when the curtains close the truth comes out.

    The good news is that the majority of that 30% is in Appalachia, so there is hope. The rest of America can be reasoned with.

    A candidate can not be all things to all people without coming off as a phony... so Barack should just continue to run his race, be himself, learn from the people that do not like him...and continue to show his love for this country and vision for Change. Thats all he can do.

    If he over compensate to try to appease or appeal to those that will not accept him because of who is is and what they think he is... then he may end up off course.

    Obama is the best thing to happen to our political scene in quite some time. If Appalachia cant see that,then it can only be described as ...unfortunate.

  •  Did TPM use this without attribution? (0+ / 0-)

    I was just wondering how a very similar analysis was posted the next day on Talking Points Memo that didn't give this analysis a hat tip. Coincidence?

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site