2008 August 23 Saturday
Republicans For Obama And Democrats For McCain

Audacious Epigone points out that more Democrats support McCain than Republicans support Obama.

"Republicans for Obama" and the various media reports that Obama will appeal to many GOPers aside, McCain has greater support among Democrats than Obama does among Republicans. A Pew survey taken earlier this month shows 10% of registered Democrats supporting McCain, while 7% of registered Republicans support Obama.

Those figures are nearly identical to what occured in the '04 Presidential election, when 11% of Democrats voted for Bush and 6% of Republicans voted for Kerry, and also in '00, when 11% of Democrats voted for Bush and 8% of Republicans voted for Gore.

But which side is more demoralized and less up for even going to vote? The Democrats seem all pumped up. Many are thrilled at the prospect of voting for such a novelty. Many Republicans are demoralized by the Bush presidency and thoroughly unthrilled by the Iraq war.

Still, McCain has one thing going for him: Obama's image has gotten excessively inflated. Obamamania has made him vulnerable to a counterattack that undermines Obama's pretensions. Obamamania worked better in the Democratic primary than it will in the general election.

But Obama has something really big working for him: recession works against the incumbent party. But most of the times when the incumbent party lost during a recession the president or vice president was running. Does McCain pick up the blame for the recession?

We have had only one election since 1900 where there was no president or vice president on the national ticket and also there was a recession in the year of election. That was 1920, and the incumbent Democratic Party did lose in a landslide. But that is a single data point. Will voters this time around blame John McCain for a recession or lousy economy caused by a collapsing housing bubble?

Speaking as someone who thinks both McCain and Obama will make a bad president I do not feel like I have a dog in this fight. I can't figure out which of them will be worse. If we are lucky the Iraqi government will make the US withdraw our military even if McCain gets elected. So maybe McCain's position on the Iraq war won't matter that much. But if Obama wins and Peak Oil begins to bite then the Democrats get the blame and I'd rather the Republicans not get blamed for the economic contraction that is coming.

Share |      By Randall Parker at 2008 August 23 10:22 PM  Politics Elections

Stephen said at August 23, 2008 11:11 PM:

"...I'd rather the Republicans not get blamed for the economic contraction that is coming"

Why Randall? It seems to me that those who aimed the ship at the iceberg should be responsible rather than the people who happen to be at the wheel when it hits.

Randall Parker said at August 24, 2008 8:12 AM:


We've been headed for the Peak Oil Ice Berg for decades. Admiral Hyman Rickover warned about it it the 1950s. Clinton did no more about it than Bush. The Democrats and Republicans have both obstructed needed policies in this area.

We've been headed for the Old Age Entitlements Ice Berg for decades as well. The Democrats have been the big pushers of old age entitlements.

Then there is the Current Accounts Deficit Ice Berg. Neither party has been willing to stand up to East Asian nations that decided to manipulate our currency and money supply to get us to shut down factories and buy from them instead.

We are starting to hit and a lot more rivets are going to pop loose.

mark leo said at August 24, 2008 8:41 AM:

I can only say I agree with the "dissatisfaction with both" sentiment and would add that free trade, or should I say its real world surrogate, have done us in. Whichever party is more distant from that ideal will get my vote. I suspect the Democrats are; at least they talk about not granting tax credits to corporations who ship jobs overseas. Of course one never has a guarantee on promises.

HellKaiserRyo said at August 24, 2008 3:38 PM:

I do not know what I want; I think for me as a liberal, I prefer a democratic supermajority in the House and Senate with McCain as President. I am not voting in this election either.

Brent Lane said at August 24, 2008 7:51 PM:

If I might make a humble suggestion:

I would like for those of you who agree, as I do, that neither major-party candidate is worty of consideration, to search the sample Presidential ballots of your home states for an alternative, and vote for that person in November.

You may want to find someone whose party and/or personal beliefs are close to your own. Or perhaps just pick a name at random. It doesn't matter - the point is to show (A) that you care enough to vote in the race, and (B) that you reject the only 'valid' choices on the ballot.

What will this accomplish? Probably nothing. However, if enough people choose an alternative candidate - and based on the anectdotal evidence, that might be a statistically significant number - it just might prompt the emergence of a truly viable 'third party', one that would rise in opposition to the current status quo.

Sure, it's a pretty quixotic hope. . .but it's just about all we have left.

HellKaiserRyo said at August 24, 2008 9:03 PM:

Since I want to damage the Republican Party my suggestions are:

If you are right-winged: write in Tancredo
If you want a more socialist president: vote for Nader

I do not see how liberal policies will mitigate the following economic controls, so I hope Mccain wins.

rob said at August 25, 2008 11:34 AM:

I only want a few things: enforced border wall with Mexico. Deportation of criminal aliens and their dependents. An end to birthright citizenship. Drastically decreased legal immigration of members of underperforming populations eligible for affirmative action or members of protected classes under employment law (for non-gender reasons).

While I'm making a wish list: free abortions and birth control for low-intelligence and low functioning women. And policies that encourage bright, high-functioning people to have more babies while discouraging the lower-ability people from having babies.

Who can I vote for?

Audacious Epigone said at August 26, 2008 12:41 PM:

Politically, the Republican party is on the right side of the gasoline prices issue, with 70% of the public now saying they support increased drilling. I wonder how that will play out. Also, despite having a great voice, Obama is a pretty poor debater--Hillary Clinton looked and sounded better than he did in most of their debates--who isn't great on his feet (this is another subtle reminder that he is not of West African ancestry like most blacks in the US are), so he's at risk of looking 'unready'/'inexperienced' when he and McCain go at it. I'm not sure how much that will actually effect the electoral results though--demographics alone did an astonishingly good job of predicting state outcomes in the Democratic primaries.

Randall Parker said at August 27, 2008 10:22 PM:


How the oil drilling debate will play out: The higher the price of oil the more the public will demand drilling. ANWR will get opened by the time we reach $200 per barrel and probably much sooner.

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