Friday, October 10, 2008

Obama's Friends May Influence Voters, Media Not Asking What Needs to be Answered

Macomb County, Michigan is considered a bellwether for Presidential elections; we draw national attention every four years. This election cycle, every major national news organization and quite a few international ones have been crawling all over our cities and towns, trying to assess the mood of 'average' Americans.

Despite the recent pull-out of the McCain/Palin campaign and polls showing Senator Obama with a lead as large as 16 percent in the state of Michigan, one thing seems clear from our perspective. McCain can win. He can win Macomb County. He can win Michigan. He can win the presidency. The polls cannot be trusted. Yesterday's Macomb Daily editorial expresses it very well:

Obama's friends, not racism, may influence vote

Democrat Barack Obama has opened a five-point lead over Republican John McCain in a composite of national polls with less than a month to go before the presidential vote.

Of course, given the Electoral College, it will be how the candidates do in individual battleground states that will determine which candidate wins the 270 votes needed to gain the White House.

Here are composite polls for those states from the nonpartisan web site,

Michigan: Obama 49.1 percent, McCain 42.1

Colorado: Obama 48 to 44.

Ohio: Obama 48.9 to 45.1

Florida: Obama 48.4 to 45.3

Nevada: Obama 49.3 to 47.5

Missouri: Obama 47.8 to 47.5

Virginia: Obama 49.9 to 45.1

So Obama is leading in the states that will decide this election, according to pollsters. But in each of these states, undecideds total somewhere between 4 percent and 9 percent of those surveyed.

And there's Obama's problem.

In the primaries — the Democratic primaries against Sen. Hillary Clinton — Obama led in polls in New Hampshire 38.3 percent to 30 percent for Clinton. He lost that election, with Clinton winning 39 percent of the vote and Obama 36.4 percent.

In California, polls showed him up 44 percent to Clinton's 42.8 percent. Clinton took 51.9 percent of the actual vote, and Obama won 42.3 percent.

In both cases, undecided Democrats broke almost unanimously for Obama's opponent.

Much has been made in this election cycle of the so-called "Bradley effect," named for the failed gubernatorial run of Los Angeles' African-American Mayor Tom Bradley in California in 1982. Polls showed him far ahead, but when it came time for voters to cast ballots, they didn't vote the way they told pollsters they would, instead casting their ballots for his white opponent, Republican George Deukmejian.

Many analysts have interpreted this phenomenon as evidence of deep-seated racism in America. But another interpretation, and one we think more likely, is that the media in this country have created a climate of fear in which it is better not to tell the truth than risk being seen as politically incorrect.

We've already been told by some Democrats and Big Media that any voter who doesn't cast a ballot for Obama is probably a racist.

Perhaps it isn't race at all that raises doubts about Obama among voters. Maybe it's the fact that he is the most liberal member of the U.S. Senate (according to the National Journal). Or that he has yet to adequately explain his long relationships with unrepentant terrorist William Ayers, and his hateful pastor, Rev. Jeremiah Wright, or even his good friend, the convicted Chicago racketeer, Tony Rezko.

But consider this possibility: Maybe these undecideds will decide not to vote for Obama to protest the fact that major media reporters have so far refused to ask Obama the questions that need answering.

Understand that the Macomb Daily is no bastion of right-wing, conservative opinion. This is a stunning indictment of the Obama campaign and the media from one of their own. It validates what I have been saying for some time now: Obama is not a shoo-in. It can be done, and we can do it. Yes, we can.

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