Saturday, October 18, 2014

The Democrats' Brand New Problem In Kentucky

There's nothing more depressing to see the fate of the Democratic brand in Kentucky.  Gallup finds that where Democrats had a 14 point edge in 2008, those days are now long gone.

A series of disheartening figures could make Democratic Kentucky Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes' attempt to unseat Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell all the more difficult. Kentuckians are now more likely to identify as or lean toward Republicans (45%) than Democrats (39%). In the prior six years, Gallup found Democrats held at least a slight advantage.

The six-percentage-point edge favoring Republicans, based on interviewing conducted in Kentucky from January through June of this year, underscores the uphill battle Grimes faces in trying to unseat McConnell. And given typical Republican advantages in voter turnout, the Democratic deficit on partisanship among those Kentucky residents who actually turn out to vote may be even greater than six points.

I wonder what happened in 2008 that could have driven Kentuckians from the Democratic Party?  It almost seems like there was some major political event that happened in 2008 that was the last straw for many Kentucky Democrats, one so unique that it turned them into Republicans, at the rate of a 20 point swing in just six years.

It has to be unemployment, right?  It was 8.9% when Barack Obama took office in January 2009.

Only it's dropped to 6.7% in September 2014, down from a high of 10.7% in August 2009.

What about evil Obamacare?  Well, Kynect is one of the most successful state insurance exchanges in the country, if not the most successful. Nearly 500,000 Kentuckians have health insurance now that they didn't before, most of those now qualifying for low-cost Medicaid insurance.

So by a broad measure things are a lot better in Kentucky then when Bush destroyed the economy in 2008, and it was a Democrat who fixed it.

I guess we'll never know why Kentuckians hate President Obama...

Gosh I'm stumped. Maybe Hillary Clinton knows why.

The last time Hillary Rodham Clinton campaigned in Kentucky, she was delivering her victory speech after defeating Barack Obama in the state’s 2008 Democratic presidential primary on the strength of a huge advantage among white working-class voters. 
White Democrats voted for Mrs. Clinton over Mr. Obama by 49 percentage points in 2008, a telling indication of both her strength and Mr. Obama’s trouble in attracting traditional Democratic voters.

I'm not sure what the problem could be here.  I guess Kentucky really wanted a woman in the White House and that will only help Alison Grimes...

I think if Hillary Clinton were in the White House today, McConnell would be behind by 20 points,” said Todd Hollenbach Sr., a former Jefferson County judge executive whom Mr. McConnell unseated in 1977.

It's on the tip of my tongue, although for some reason Grimes is behind, even though she's a woman...

Jonathan Miller, a former Kentucky state treasurer, said it was voters’ animosity toward Mr. Obama, and not necessarily excitement for Mrs. Clinton, that was energizing Democrats here. “We’re just nostalgic for when Democrats were different than Obama,” he said.

Animosity towards the guy that gave 500,000 affordable health insurance and cut 4 points off unemployment?  I'm sure I'll figure out why someday.  Kentuckians must have a real problem with left-handed Presidents, I guess.


Jean said...

Thank you for this blog. I enjoy your thoughts and your style.

Melvin Miller said...

Another way of saying they are just racists.

Aimai said...

If they vote for McConnell I guess we know that judgment will come swiftly.

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