Tuesday, October 30, 2012

He Loses Debates But Keeps Gaining Voters: New NPR Poll Demonstrates How White Privilege Buoys Mitt Romney's Support Among White Independent Voters (Again)

I hope all of you who are being directly impacted by Superstorm Sandy are safe, warm, and well. My thoughts are with you. Life and death matters do put politics in perspective; but politics and the election continue onward even though we are humbled by mother nature.

Last week, I pointed out how Mitt Romney has lost two debates but gained support among undecideds and white independents. By contrast, if Obama has done so poorly he would have lost even more support among a fickle white public.

Low information and undecided voters use other cues to make up their minds about a candidate. One of them is racial affinity. This plays out through a default choice for the white candidate, where Romney's whiteness is a cue about the country's return to "normality" for those voters.

Romney's strategists know that white identity politics are the path to the White House. As such, their strategy of naked racial appeals and covert dog whistles has been the go-to-plan--one that is bearing great fruit among white voters.

As this new poll from NPR suggests, once more, white privilege is a hell of a drug. A white candidate can lose two debates against the black guy, but Whiteness is a cognitive map that turns defeat, failure, incompetence, practiced lying and political subterfuge into measures of competence, and makes a Romney victory increasingly likely.

The wages of whiteness remain great:

A new National Public Radio poll, which had President Obama leading Mitt Romney 51 percent to 44 percent four weeks ago, now has Mitt Romney on top, 48 percent to 47 percent, with the Republican benefiting from his debate performances.
The poll found that among likely voters, 34 percent said Romney's debate performances made them more likely to vote for the challenger while 28 percent said they now are more likely to vote for the president. Among critical independent voters, though, Romney won big, with 37 percent saying they are now more likely to chose him compared to 21 percent for Obama.
But Democratic pollster Stanley Greenberg and Republican pollster Whit Ayres found that Obama leads by 4 points in the 12 battleground states that appear ready to pick the winner for the rest of the country next Tuesday. And they suggest that Romney's post-debate surge has "stalled."
The duo surveyed 1,000 likely voters nationwide with an over-sampling in 12 battleground states: Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Michigan, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Wisconsin. The poll was conducted Tuesday through Thursday (October 23-25). The margin of error is 3 percentage points for the national sample, and 4.5 percentage points for the smaller subsample (462 respondents) in the battleground states. The sample was 35 percent Democrat, 31 percent Republican.
Ayers said that Romney is doing particularly well among independent voters. According to NPR, "most of the gains for Romney have come from independents, who went from favoring Romney by a few points before the debates to favoring him 51% to 39% after the debates."
Ayres added, "So were it not for the debates, I think Obama would be cruising to a victory right now. Because of the debates, this is going to be an incredibly close election."
Romney also beat Obama as the candidate best prepared to handle the issues of jobs, the deficit and taxes, but Obama won on more issues: health care, Medicare, foreign policy and national security.
What's more, those polled said that Obama, by a 55 percent to 44 percent margin, has spelled out a clear agenda for the nation.


CNu said...

Does the outcome of this election really tell anybody anything useful about what time it is?

annum natalem said...


nomad said...

What time it is indeed. And its really sad. That is the way things are and the way they have been since the inception of the nation. The thing is, what the election of Barack showed was a willingness on the part of the white electorate to transcend that reprehensible legacy. The liberals, for all the bashing they receive around here, the white liberals were the swing vote that put Barama in office. The whites that CD is railing against -the Republicans - the T party- they didn't vote for him in the first place and they never will. What happen is not that whites as a group became collectively more racist. No.No.No. They were always racist. They are always going to be racist. They ain't no more racist today than they was at the last poll taken on this. No Obama didn't lose them. He never had them. The whites he lost were lost because the m**f**r wasn't progressive enough! Losing due to racism! Puh-lease! He losing me. And I ain't white.

nomad said...

"They were always (the racists among them, that is) racist."

makheru bradley said...

The reality is President Obama never overcame his self-destruction in the first debate. You can say that he landed some blows late in the fight to tighten up the final margin, but he never recovered from his overwhelming loss in the early rounds.

Rasmussen’s poll on the 2012 debates: 49% say Romney won; compared with 41% for Obama. Before the first debate Romney was toast. Obama gave him a chance.

Many of these same white independents voted for Obama in 2008. Economics trumped white identity for these voters in 2008. I would say the same holds true for these voters in 2012.

The October 29 poll by the Pew Research Center offers the most detailed analysis.


Low information and undecided voters use other cues to make up their minds about a candidate.—CDV

Like these for example:


nomad said...

"Low information and undecided voters use other cues to make up their minds about a candidate."—CDV

I don't think that's who he meant.
Oh, the cognitive dissonance!

"Well ah I mean that..." "For real?" "Let me take a moment to think about that." "Wow!" "I'm shocked!" "I dunno, man...That really messed up."


chaunceydevega said...

@MB. Thanks. I missed that rip off of Howard Stern's routine. I actually emailed the show's producer about it. But your point is well-taken. I will be doing something shortly on it.

@Nomad. Hell, he was right, as are you. The masses are indeed asses.

nomad said...

I think it's reprehensible that folks think they've got to vote for evil --lesser, more effective, whatever-- but please don't add insult to injury by not recognizing, acknowledging and admitting the evil you're voting for. If you don't know that this is what you're voting for then indeed you are an ass. An ignorant ass. If you do know and you vote for it anyway, then you're just complicit. Time washes away all bloody hands. Innocent dupes you can claim to have been in 2008. In 2012 you know exactly, if you've been paying attention, what you're voting for.

nomad said...

Here's a thought. We black,right? I mean that in the MLK, content of character sense. Ment'ly. Black is a state of mind. Why not, unlike in 2008, vote for an actually black candidate? Someone who actually stands for the principles MLK stood for? Huh? Huh?
"For my own part, I will be voting for Jill Stein, the Green Party's candidate, and Cheri Honkala. These are people unafraid to declare the drug war must be ended, and a WPA-style Green Jobs -Green New Deal program initiated, that we have to bring the troops home and cease supporting apartheid Israel. Stein and Honkala are white, of course. But their politics, by the measure of Martin Luther King at least, are blacker than Barack Obama's have ever been."

The Sanity Inspector said...

The election is like the NBA season. It's too long, and only the last four weeks are going to matter.

nomad said...

In 2012 you know exactly, if you've been paying attention, what you're voting for. The Drone Ranger.