Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Obama Keeps a Low Profile In Georgia And Louisiana Races-- Possibly Dooming Both Democratic Candidates


Woulda, shoulda, coulda... Palin did and Obama didn't

By wide margins, Americans approve of President-elect Obama and his cabinet choices. Almost 70% approve of his choice of Hillary Clinton to be Secretary of State and 80% approve of his decision to keep Robert Gates on at the Pentagon.
In the poll, Americans by more than 3-1 say they trust Obama more than Bush to handle the economy. By 58%-33%, they support Obama's promise of a huge spending package to stimulate the economy.

...There's little concern Obama is relying too much on veterans of President Clinton's administration. By nearly 4-1, those polled say the picks will make the new team more effective.

Numbers like that mean he's getting support across the board. Even 40% of Republicans approved of the Clinton choice (as did 89% of Democrats and 69% of independents). In fact, 78% of Americans approve of the way Obama is handling his presidential transition, with only 13% disapproving. A majority of Democrats (94%), independents (79%), and Republicans (57%) all say they approve. By way of comparison 66% approved of Bill Clinton's 1992 transition and 63% approved of Bush's right after he stole the 2000 election.

Still, Obama was unwilling to put any political capital on the line to try to win a veto proof Senate and defeat one of his most die-hard reactionary opponents, Saxby Chambliss, whose entire negative campaign is based on stopping Obama. Polls close at 7pm Eastern Time and short lines so far presage a win for Chambliss. The only way he could have been defeated would have been for Obama to go to Georgia and work it. He chose to stay above the fray, cutting a radio spot-- not even TV!-- and a robocall. And the DSCC sent around e-mails begging us to help by sending money! Screw them!
Polling stations across Georgia reported low to moderate voter turnout. At the Atlanta Public Library on Ponce de Leon Ave., where more than 1,600 people voted in the general election, only 400 people had voted by noon today.

But among those who did bother to get out to the polls, "many voters interviewed today said the balance of power was an important factor in their choice of a candidate."

But how important is this election if Obama is doing approximately the same thing for Jim Martin as he did for a backward, reactionary asshole, Paul Carmouche, running as a Democrat in Louisiana's 4th CD in an election this coming Saturday. Carmouche-- like Don Cazayoux, who was one of only 4 Democrats defeated last month (and unlike Jim Martin) is unlikely to support much of what Obama tried to do to change the direction of the country-- now has a radio ad from Obama, which is expected to appeal to progressives and African-Americans, two groups that have no logical reason to support Carmouche. In fact, Obama is either disingenuous or naive in his statement:
"To change America and to get Louisiana's economy back on track-- I need leaders like Paul Carmouche working with me in Washington. Paul Carmouche is the kind of leader we need in Washington...to make a difference for the people of Northwest Louisiana."

It was just a few weeks ago that enough African American and progressive voters abandoned Cazayoux-- basically cut from the same vile mold as Carmouche-- to throw his seat to a Republican. They had given him a chance and elected him but once he got into Congress he abandoned all pretense of serving working families and threw his lot in with the Republicans. On substantive matters that divided the two parties in the House, Cazayoux voted with the GOP far more frequently than with his fellow Democrats. And the voters back in Baton Rouge noticed and voted for a third party candidate. The only Democrats who voted more frequently with the Republicans than Cazayoux were Nick Lampson (TX), who was also defeated last month, Jim Marshall (GA) and Joe Donnelly (IN). African-Americans in LA-04 don't appear inclined to vote for Carmouche, which is why the DCCC implored Obama to cut the radio spot. Of all the people who took part in early voting, only 19% were African Americans, who make up almost a third of registered voters in the district. Paul Carmouche deserves to lose. Jim Martin doesn't.


Votes are coming in and the Secretary of State's website seems to be getting the results up pretty fast. Tondee's Tavern is a good place to watch for fast interpretations and details. Atlanta Metro will probably come in late though-- that's what happened last time-- and if Martin has any chance of winning, it will be because of unexpectedly large margins in Fulton and Dekalb. So far, comparing early returns to returns from last month don't show any surprises at all (good news for the bad guys).

9:08 PM, Eastern: CNN projects Chambliss


Obama supporters didn't turn out in the same kinds of numbers that hysterical right-wingers did. African American participation was down drastically from last month.
Martin appeared to suffer mightily from a lack of African-American turnout, which dropped from 30 percent of early votes four weeks ago to around 20 percent in the runoff.

In Atlanta-based Fulton County, Chambliss was almost even with Martin with half the precincts reporting. Martin defeated him nearly two-to-one in the county in the general election.

Labels: , , , , ,


At 5:17 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I still don't understand why Obama didn't go to Georgia to campaign for Martin. Was it that he felt that Martin would lose - which would be an early blot on Obama?

At 6:01 PM, Blogger DownWithTyranny said...

I think that was part of it. Plus he's trying to stay above the fray a bit and appear like the father of the nation, not just a partisan Democrat. I understand that but the idea of defeating someone as truly terrible as Chambliss should have outweighed other considerations.


Post a Comment

<< Home