“…We All Really Ought to Just Dial Back Some of this Rhetoric.”

So says Jim Clyburn in an interview with National Journal. The money line:

I saw a Gallup poll today — I saw the results of it, anyway — that said that Barack Obama, at this very moment, is exactly where [John] Kerry was at this point with white voters as well as with black voters. Now, what does that mean? That means, if he maintains that, and he does it in a state like Colorado, that’s the difference between winning and losing. Any one of those states — Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona — that had been carried by Kerry would have delivered the presidency. Not to mention these other states — Virginia, for instance. If you look at the white vote that Obama got in Virginia — it was extraordinary. And the same thing, over 40 percent, in Indiana — extraordinary. And so I think that we all really ought to just dial back some of this rhetoric, and let’s start talking about what makes us all good Democrats.

This seems like another one of those elephants in the room the media is ignoring for the sake of narrative; Democrats typically lose white voters, particularly white males. Bill Clinton himself lost white males in both 1992 and 1996. The question isn’t whether Democrats can win white males making less than $50,000 without college degrees because, well, they can’t. Hillary Clinton can get a bigger share of that demographic than Barack Obama in a Democratic primary, but John McCain will beat either of them in that demographic. The question is of dueling bases, single white women for Hillary and African Americans for Obama, and which is likely to prove more durable for the other candidate, and of who can make the most inroads at the margins to swing the electoral math. Obama’s continued advantage with new and independent voters, and his ability to drive turnout, certainly seem to give him the edge in that argument.

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