Tuesday, May 27, 2008

A Task Ahead

While Barack Obama ponders whether to offer a woman such as Kansas Governor Kathleen Sebelius the nod as his running mate, the BBC's Katty Kay made on the May 25, 2008 episode of "The Chris Matthews Show" a comment with major implications for his decision. Kay stated of Obama:

And he's probably going to end up having a tougher problem with the poor white men who have voted for her than with the women who have voted for her.

It is almost self-evident that a large percentage of the women who have voted for Clinton in the primaries/caucus have done so in part because she is a woman and, probably, the vast majority are on the left side of the ideological divide. Consequently, they probably will return to the Democratic column in November. But most of the men who voted for the New York senator did so for a different reason: she is not Obama. Whether Obama is too liberal, black, cosmopolitan, patronizing, inexperienced, or gaffe-prone for them, men less so than women were embracing Hillary Clinton- and more were rejecting Barack Obama. Getting them to pull the Democratic lever in the fall will not be easy- and would be made even harder by putting a woman on a ticket already poised (with a black man) to make history.

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