06 September 2008

More talk about politics and religion

As you may have gathered from the news, McCain picked a hardcore evangelical for VP and Obama picked a hardcore Catholic.

If this matters state by state, this is how it will likely do so in crucial states:

An evangelical could help in: Virginia (32.7% evangelicals to 14% Catholics as a percentage of overall Christians), North Carolina (40% e, 11c), Georgia which may end up close (32.7e, 8.9c), OR, SC and AK which lean McCain.

Missouri has plenty of both (27e, 19c) but where it's close keep in mind that Catholics are more likely to be undecided while evangelicals are mostly counted already in the Republican base, but with potentially increased turnout and mobilization. We can also presume that evangelicals are more inclined to vote for their own than Catholics.

Florida's Latinos put Catholics slightly over the top (26c, 24.6e). Ohio is 25e 19c, Colorado 25e 23c about 10% Mexican, Michigan 25e, 23c.

A Catholic could help in: New Mexico (40.2c, 30% Mexican, 18e), New Hampshire (35c, 22.3e), North Dakota (30c, 16.2e), Pennsylvania (27.4c, 21.5e), and Nevada (23c, 20e). The 5.9% Mormons in Nevada like others there may resent Palin calling out their senior Senator Harry Reid.

What percentage of evangelicals will say "Sarah Palin is a cheap attempt to get me to vote for a dangerously unqualified potential president"? We'll see...

This analysis suggests that if Palin conducts herself perfectly and communicates a command of the issues, she could take a few votes from Obama in Virginia and force him to win it in other states. This is a minor effect on a race that represents the best case scenario for the Alaska governor. Obama's position looks very strong even if this happens.

Source: Beliefnet


Ryan W. said...

I think the obama side is doing a good job of not overreacting to things. their tone and approach are just right. for example:

I hope they won't talk too much about lack of press scrutiny of palin, because it could have the effect of once again lowering expectations and thus helping mccain. I'm a little worried palin will muddle through a couple interviews and then the GOP side will say, hey look, they counted her out again and she did great. and then there will be no palin interviews for a while.

Ian Keenan said...

That scenario will surely happen. There is really a delicate game going on which is seen in the internal polls where McCain is getting a 20% bounce (surprising to Democrats in general) with white woman voters, a game which requires her gaffes, duplicities, and pro-life crusade to evade the attention of white women over 50 with no college.

However she's handled in the media it's much harder to imagine the Palin brand making further inroads into female votes and easier to imagine the trend reversing. Obama's strategy is to target these female voters with policy points on healthcare, education and reproductive choice.

She's already said that the founding fathers wrote the pledge of allegience and that Fannie Mae has been taxpayer funded, implying it will no longer be taxpayer funded. The people who know these things are not the voters in play.

Even with the Palin bounce, Obama has a victory if the election were held today. It's hard to imagine how McCain can catch Obama by copying him. Bush Sr's strategy of catching up to Dukakis with four heavily rotated negative ads is being used efficiently by Obama.