Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Lead Zeppellin Wednesday

So many overhyped and overinflated races yesterday. Some interesting developments came out of them, however:

1) First off, Mitt Romney pulled in 90% of the vote in his "home" state of Utah. Never before in the history of the primaries has a candidate from either party polled so high. It's a testament to two things: Mormons stick together, and there's a lot of inbreeding going on.

2) For the Democrats, the only real surprise of the evening was the margin of popular vote victory in Massachussetts for Hillary Clinton, who basically became the anti-establishment candidate in a state notorious for going against the establishment. When your opponent is endorsed by both Senators Kerry and Kennedy, and the governor, Deval Patrick (who happens to be black), and all you can ante up is an endorsement by Robert Kennedy Jr., you can almost guarantee yourself a win, it seems.

3) Every poll that had Obama closing in on Clinton in California was dead wrong, as I pointed out a few days ago.

4) Anybody who believed Mike Huckabee wouldn't win West Virginia has obviously never been there. I haven't, but I've been in the deep woods of western Virginia. Trust me, Huckabee would have won if he had been exposed as gay on Monday, they love their preachers there that much.

5) Georgia was a mild surprise: I thought the coast and Atlanta would give McCain more of a push, but in a quirky fluke, Romney may have siphoned off votes from McCain.

6) By the way, almost none of this is final as there are still two million absentee ballots nationwide to count. This is New Mexico is still in play.

7) Speaking of New Mexico, it's interesting that Bill Richardson didn't make an endorsement ahead of the primary there. If he was angling for the Veep spot, I think he's pulled a Mario Cuomo here and out-cuted his chances.

8) We can finally point out that Obama carried a state with a majority of the white vote. Several now, but one big knock against him in anticipation of the general election was his marginalized white support.

9) There's a large "but" there. Obama is still having trouble with white rural and suburban voters and those might go towards a McCain candidacy. He does well in counties where there are universities, and in urban areas. You might not think this is a bad thing, but intellect is not high on the list of values of poor and working class white voters. They like smart, but not necessarily book smart. New York, for example, which is actually "redder" in the Southern Tier than even Alabama, Obama took just one county, Tompkins (the home of Cornell University), and that by only a couple hundred votes out of twelve thousand.

10) March 4 is Texas and Ohio, lest you thought the days of big delegate prizes was over. Clinton should easily win Texas, probably more easily than California. Ohio, as always, will be a battleground state. I anticipate a Clinton win, but I'm not holding my breath there.