Saturday, September 20, 2008

White "Misgivings" and Obama

"Deep-seated racial misgivings could cost Barack Obama the White House if the election is close", according to an AP-Yahoo News poll conducted with Stanford University.

The survey of 2,227 adults finds that though McCain faces "obstacles" Obama, on the other hand, faces 40% of all white voters who harbour some negative views of Blacks.

Perhaps most troubling for Obama is the finding that among white Democrats and independents more than a third hold a negative view of Blacks.

Obama can't win without the majority support of white Democrats and independents yet the poll finds that those who hold negative views of Blacks are not likely to vote for him.

The poll also found significant racial prejudices among Republicans, however, this is not why they won't vote for Obama. Most Republicans vote against any democratic candidate.

It is significant to note that more whites said positive rather than negative things about Blacks.

Race is also not the most important reason why almost 30% of white Democrats reject Obama. The poll found that many whites have issues with his competency to bring change.

I wonder though if it is even possible to disentangle race from white opinions of Black competency?

Nontheless, 3 out of 10 whites who have issues with Obama's competency have indicated that they will vote for McCain.

According to the poll most Blacks support Obama. It is, however, questionable whether this support will help to offset the negative votes among whites.

It is interesting to note that statistical models drawn from the poll data show that Obama could enjoy as much as 6 more percentage points if his race was not a negative factor for white voters.

Nuff said. There is more than just toast burning in the kitchen.


Hat Tip to the Angryindian for the referring articles.


Rent Party said...

I saw this blog comment on the "qualifications" issue, which was amusing and interesting:

I'm sure race will get him in trouble but I suspect it's also that he's bright and can speak. This is in contrast to McCain not knowing where major countries are, and Palin being so brazenly vapid.
It appears to me that many Americans will want to vote for ignorance! Hate to say it, but I've seen it before.

Ridwan said...

Thanks for your comment Rent Party. I think the comment is exactly right.

Palin is more suspect when it comes to qualifications.

Remember when Bush was asked if had been to Europe and he said no.

When asked where he has been outside the US he said "Mexico".

And folks voted for him.

Barack will find out that when you are black qualifications do not matter. This is a man who graduated from Harvard and has achieved things most of his white colleagues have not.

Yet, in the poll Obama was associated with words like "lazy" and "violent". It was not that the respondents used those words to describe him, it was that the words were associated as 'truths' about Blackness.

Obama in whiteness is responsible for all Blacks and all associated 'truths' no matter how untrue.

Palin is not. Her daughter can get pregnant at 17, drop out of high school, and she is not made to be pathological.

Palin's inexperience is made to look as if she is new, and fresh.

Obama's inexperience is made to look as if he is not competent.

I think of a Black parent telling her chidren that in America you have to work twice as hard as whites.

The double standard is well worn in an array of issues.

Up to now Obama has been acting as if this long standing experience is conveniently in the past.

He did a good job of convincing both Blacks and whites.

What is left now is for him to convince himself as his nonsense falls apart in the coming weeks.


Dade said...

I saw the same poll and it is troubling. However, there is the possibility that, as this deepening financial crisis continues to make headlines, racial prejudices might just take a back seat to fears about money and personal finance....

We'll just have to see, my friend.

Ridwan said...

I look forward to the debates Dade. I expect that you must fired up to watch too.

McSame must be worried and for good reason.

It will be interesting to see if Obama's numbers will go up significantly after each debate.

Thanks for looking in brother.