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AP: White Racists May Cost Obama Election

The Associated Press needs to pick a story and stick to it.

In the last several days the AP has told us that more people would rather have a beer and watch football with Barack Hussein Obama than McCain. They have also informed us that more people would rather have their children taught by Barack Hussein Obama.

So then how is it that the only reason anyone would not vote for Obama is because of race?

From today’s lesson from the Associated Press:


Racial views steer some white Dems away from Obama

By RON FOURNIER and TREVOR TOMPSON
Sept. 20, 2008

WASHINGTON — Deep-seated racial misgivings could cost Barack Obama the White House if the election is close, according to an AP-Yahoo News poll that found one-third of white Democrats harbor negative views toward blacks — many calling them “lazy,” “violent” or responsible for their own troubles.

The poll, conducted with Stanford University, suggests that the percentage of voters who may turn away from Obama because of his race could easily be larger than the final difference between the candidates in 2004 — about two and one-half percentage points.

Certainly, Republican John McCain has his own obstacles: He’s an ally of an unpopular president and would be the nation’s oldest first-term president. But Obama faces this: 40 percent of all white Americans hold at least a partly negative view toward blacks, and that includes many Democrats and independents.

More than a third of all white Democrats and independents — voters Obama can’t win the White House without — agreed with at least one negative adjective about blacks, according to the survey, and they are significantly less likely to vote for Obama than those who don’t have such views.

Such numbers are a harsh dose of reality in a campaign for the history books…

The findings suggest that Obama’s problem is close to home — among his fellow Democrats, particularly non-Hispanic white voters. Just seven in 10 people who call themselves Democrats support Obama, compared to the 85 percent of self-identified Republicans who back McCain.

The survey also focused on the racial attitudes of independent voters because they are likely to decide the election.

Lots of Republicans harbor prejudices, too, but the survey found they weren’t voting against Obama because of his race. Most Republicans wouldn’t vote for any Democrat for president — white, black or brown.

Not all whites are prejudiced. Indeed, more whites say good things about blacks than say bad things, the poll shows. And many whites who see blacks in a negative light are still willing or even eager to vote for Obama.

On the other side of the racial question, the Illinois Democrat is drawing almost unanimous support from blacks, the poll shows, though that probably wouldn’t be enough to counter the negative effect of some whites’ views.

Race is not the biggest factor driving Democrats and independents away from Obama. Doubts about his competency loom even larger, the poll indicates. More than a quarter of all Democrats expressed doubt that Obama can bring about the change they want, and they are likely to vote against him because of that.

Three in 10 of those Democrats who don’t trust Obama’s change-making credentials say they plan to vote for McCain.

Still, the effects of whites’ racial views are apparent in the polling.

Statistical models derived from the poll suggest that Obama’s support would be as much as 6 percentage points higher if there were no white racial prejudice.

But in an election without precedent, it’s hard to know if such models take into account all the possible factors at play.

The AP-Yahoo poll used the unique methodology of Knowledge Networks, a Menlo Park, Calif., firm that interviews people online after randomly selecting and screening them over telephone. Numerous studies have shown that people are more likely to report embarrassing behavior and unpopular opinions when answering questions on a computer rather than talking to a stranger.

Other techniques used in the poll included recording people’s responses to black or white faces flashed on a computer screen, asking participants to rate how well certain adjectives apply to blacks, measuring whether people believe blacks’ troubles are their own fault, and simply asking people how much they like or dislike blacks.

“We still don’t like black people,” said John Clouse, 57, reflecting the sentiments of his pals gathered at a coffee shop in Somerset, Ohio.

Given a choice of several positive and negative adjectives that might describe blacks, 20 percent of all whites said the word “violent” strongly applied. Among other words, 22 percent agreed with “boastful,” 29 percent “complaining,” 13 percent “lazy” and 11 percent “irresponsible.” When asked about positive adjectives, whites were more likely to stay on the fence than give a strongly positive assessment.

Among white Democrats, one-third cited a negative adjective and, of those, 58 percent said they planned to back Obama.

The poll sought to measure latent prejudices among whites by asking about factors contributing to the state of black America. One finding: More than a quarter of white Democrats agree that “if blacks would only try harder, they could be just as well off as whites.”

Those who agreed with that statement were much less likely to back Obama than those who didn’t.

Among white independents, racial stereotyping is not uncommon. For example, while about 20 percent of independent voters called blacks “intelligent” or “smart,” more than one third latched on the adjective “complaining” and 24 percent said blacks were “violent.”

Nearly four in 10 white independents agreed that blacks would be better off if they “try harder.”

The survey broke ground by incorporating images of black and white faces to measure implicit racial attitudes, or prejudices that are so deeply rooted that people may not realize they have them. That test suggested the incidence of racial prejudice is even higher, with more than half of whites revealing more negative feelings toward blacks than whites.

Researchers used mathematical modeling to sort out the relative impact of a huge swath of variables that might have an impact on people’s votes — including race, ideology, party identification, the hunger for change and the sentiments of Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton’s backers.

Just 59 percent of her white Democratic supporters said they wanted Obama to be president. Nearly 17 percent of Clinton’s white backers plan to vote for McCain.

Among white Democrats, Clinton supporters were nearly twice as likely as Obama backers to say at least one negative adjective described blacks well [sic], a finding that suggests many of her supporters in the primaries — particularly whites with high school education or less — were motivated in part by racial attitudes.

The survey of 2,227 adults was conducted Aug. 27 to Sept. 5. It has a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 2.1 percentage points.

By the way, see if you can make heads or tails out of this gibberish careful exegesis about how this highly valuable poll was conducted:

How AP-Yahoo News poll on race was designed

By The Associated Press

This AP-Yahoo News poll was designed to dig into one of the most sensitive subjects in American politics: racial attitudes and their effect on how people will vote in an election in which Democrat Barack Obama could become the first black president.

The survey, designed in partnership with Stanford University, included overt questions aimed at understanding people’s attitudes toward blacks, such as how well words like “friendly” or “violent” describe African-Americans. They were also asked their views of Obama and Republican John McCain.

Since many people are uncomfortable discussing race with pollsters and others they do not know, the poll also used subtler techniques.

For one thing, the survey was conducted online, as have all AP-Yahoo News polls since they began last November. Studies have shown people are more willing to reveal potentially unpopular attitudes on a computer than in questioning by a live interviewer.

The poll also used a technique aimed at measuring what psychologists call “affect misattribution.” This involved showing faces of people of different races quickly on a screen before displaying a neutral image that people were asked to rate as pleasant or unpleasant. Studies have shown that people consciously or unconsciously transfer their feelings about the photograph to the object they are rating.

In addition, random groups of subjects were presented lists with varying numbers of subjects, such as increased federal gasoline taxes, corporations polluting the environment and a black president. They were then asked how many of those items — not which ones — were upsetting. By comparing each group’s answers, researchers were able to estimate how many people were upset by the items relating to blacks.

The researchers compared the subjects’ ages, party identification, perceptions of Obama and McCain, and other factors to their racial attitudes. This allowed them to create mathematical formulas predicting the likelihood that people would vote for either Obama or McCain, based on their different characteristics and attitudes. The models allowed them to estimate how much impact each factor has on each candidate’s support, controlling for other factors.

By using their formulas, the researchers were able to conclude that race was a factor in how people vote, independent of their other political views and their demographic characteristics. They then used the formulas to predict how much support Obama is losing because of his race.

The result: Obama would receive an estimated 6 percentage points more support if there were no racial prejudice. While the model was exhaustive, it is hard to know if it included every variable that could have an impact in this election…

The questions and results for this poll are available at http://news.yahoo.com/polls and at http://surveys.ap.org.

Translation: AP asked a handful of people a series of vague questions that could be massaged by armchair psychologists into proving that (white) US voters are racist.

And all of this science was buttressed by “subtler” techniques — also known as “divination” or “guessing.” 

By the way, there is still no word from the AP as to whether black voters, who are predicted to be voting for Mr. Obama at the rate of 99%, are racist.

Indeed, this is the same AP, who like the rest of our watchdog media, first ignored and then whitewashed the outrageously racist views of Mr. Obama’s spiritual mentor and his church for more than 20 years.

One suspects that any poll would show that most informed citizens would consider them “lazy” and “liars.” Which of course would just go to prove how prejudiced we all are.

By the way, check out the FEC records of the political contributions of the people from Knowledge Networks who concocted this “poll”:

Contributions to Political Committees

GRAHAM, PATRICIA
CHICAGO, IL 60614
KNOWLEDGE NETWORKS/MARKETING

EDWARDS, JOHN
VIA JOHN EDWARDS FOR PRESIDENT

03/28/2007
250.00
27930587973

06/16/2007
250.00
27990245792

06/19/2007
250.00
27990245791

KERRY, JOHN F
VIA JOHN KERRY FOR PRESIDENT INC

07/05/2004
250.00
24962244505

RICKARD, LORNA
DENVER, CO 80211
KNOWLEDGE NETWORK

MOVEON.ORG VOTER FUND

10/24/2003
200.00
27039333829

STREICER, JANET
NEW YORK, NY 10021
KNOWLEDGE NETWORK

NEW YORK STATE DEMOCRATIC COMMITTEE

12/04/2000
250.00
21036874821

VECCIA, E
MENLO PARK, CA 94025
KNOWLEDGE NETWORKS INC./MARKETING

KERRY, JOHN F
VIA JOHN KERRY FOR PRESIDENT INC

07/29/2004
300.00
24962258772

Total Contributions:    1750.00

And speaking of the credibility, who really believes that anyone would have the patience to take a 34 page online poll?

And yes, the pdf version of the poll is 34 pages long.

(Thanks to Franco and DodgeBoy26 for the heads up.)

This article was posted by Steve Gilbert on Saturday, September 20th, 2008. Comments are currently closed.

30 Responses to “AP: White Racists May Cost Obama Election”

  1. Steve

    In case anyone was wondering:

    Barack Obama’s black support linked to issues, not race

    by Rickey Hampton | The Flint Journal
    Sunday September 21, 2008

    http://tinyurl.com/4np3o2

    The issue has been settled.

  2. JohnMG

    …..”Barack Obama’s black support linked to issues, not race…..”

    I wonder what cave Rickey (“Van Winkle”) Hampton just crawled from. By his reckoning, EVERYBODY is racist. Or not.

    It’s pathetic what passes for journalism these days.

  3. Exeter

    SG – great follow-up article. I noticed that, unlike the thread’s article, this new “finding” was reached by asking one simple question: “Are you voting for Barack Obama because he is black?” No questions like, “What do you like best about Obama’s platform?” or “What do you think Obama brings to the national contest that other Democrats do not?” I guess Hampton thinks it would be racist to ask black people hard questions.

  4. peoplepowergranny

    I think people are trying to find any reason they can to say why they’ll not vote for Obama this year. But the elephant on the table is that he is of a different race, and folks don’t want to admit that his race affects how they will vote. In peoplepowergranny, I discuss this tonight. Vote in my poll, and let me know what you think.

  5. JohnMG

    peoplepowergranny; …..”folks don’t want to admit that his race affects how they will vote…..”

    Let me ask a few questions of you.

    Are you a socialist? I don’t like socialists so I won’t vote for you.
    Are you pro-abortion? I am pro-life, so I won’t vote for you.
    Are you anti-gun? I am pro-second amendment, so I won’t vote for you.
    Are you for higher taxes? I want to keep what I earned, so I won’t vote for you.
    Are you anti-military? I am a Viet Nam veteran, so I won’t vote for you.

    So I guess if you believe in all of the above-mentioned positions, and you happen to be black, then I’m a racist, right? My feelings don’t count, right?

    Sorry for the confusion this may have caused for you, but maybe, just maybe, I won’t vote for Obama because I don’t like him or what he stands for.

    Sheesh! A body shouldn’t have to explain this.

  6. Exeter

    PPG – You won’t believe this, but you’re biased. You prove it in your statement, “But the elephant on the table is that he is of a different race, and folks don’t want to admit that his race affects how they will vote.” This premise is also a presumption, supported by nothing more than what you ‘feel’ is true. Like JohnMG expressed in the post above, I know exactly what I think and where I stand on the issues. I don’t need to “find any reason I can to say why I’ll not vote for Obama this year”. When the Democrats put up a candidate that doesn’t hate God, Freedom and America, I’ll consider voting ‘D’.

    BTW – it’s ‘elephant in the room’ and ‘cards on the table’ – stop mixing your metaphors!

  7. Nimblicity

    I have to confess I have heard (Democrat) people say they were not going to vote for Obama because he is black.

    I shudder to think that the same people who tell me that would happily vote for a forked-tongue, pretty-boy, blame-America-first, socialist-elitist, Mustafa-Mond wannabe who happened to have less melanin. Because to a person, I know they would, just because of a party label.

    These “Dummo-crats for McCain” do little credit to either side. If they want to do the right thing for the wrong reason, we’ll all be better off–but it still makes me sad.

  8. GTBurns

    What is this called….COVERING THEIR ASSES. I sense a lot from the left that they are going to lose. My UAW dad thinks it and I sense it from all these celeb supporters with their PALIN attacks and on the lefty blogs. They try to put of a good front but you can see they are afraid. You still see some of that on the right but Palin was a shot in the arm after Obama made a very anti-climatic VP choice.

    So the MSM is already trying to pull the race card, this shows they are desperate. The public know the MSM are Obama are cheerleaders and are already losing trust in the newspapers as subscriptions continue to decline.

  9. clifcrds

    As Snagglepuss used to say “Heavens to Mergatroid” . . . how long is Yahoo and the AP going to post this blatant piece of propaganda?

    SG more or less exposed this as nothing more than a flimsy Democratic racial scare tactic concocted by fully committed Democratic/liberal leftists trying to pass themselves off as totally unbiased pollsters last Friday!

    So here I am on Monday morning, sitting down to my computer looking to get the “real news of the day and propped up front and center on the Yahoo web page in the “Featured News” section is this same BS story! How stupid do they think we are?

    Newsflash to all liberal leftist Democrats and your sycophantic lapdog mouthpieces the MSM . . . this isn’t the “Outer Limits” anymore . . . you don’t control the airwaves and you don’t control all we see and hear”! So give it a break and quit trying to insult our intelligence!

    One more thing while I am on my 5th cup of coffee rant – please allow me to add something that reinforces one of the traits of Obama contained in JohnMG’s response to peoplepowergranny – Are you a socialist? I don’t like socialists so I won’t vote for you.

    Obama and today’s liberal leftist Democrats are using the very same tactics that the communists used . . . so much so that you must call them what they really are – Socialists! It was comrade Vladimir Lenin himself who said “A lie told often enough soon becomes the truth.”Is this not what the Democrats and their lapdog allies the MSM do each and every day?

    As a matter of fact, there is a new name that was recently given to these leftist tactics – it is called Astroturfing. Clarice Feldman over at American Thinker explains it best” Astroturfing is the attempt to create the feeling of a grassroots movement by planting stories around the web through the use of paid or volunteer spammers. http://www.americanthinker.com.....agand.html

    Well that’s enough ranting for now so I will leave it there.

  10. Reality Bytes

    So, to prove I’m not racist, I have to vote for a black person. OK – just checking. How ’bout this. If Al Sharpton is right – that blacks Can’t be racists because they have no POWah, then if Obama gets elected, does that mean we got a whole bunch of new racists?

    I have a follow up question, but it involves the Irish so nobody will care about that one.

  11. Exeter

    clifcrds – I’m encouraged, knowing that Snagglepuss is on our side. Judging by his voice, I guess he must be a Log Cabin Republican. (Oops – homophobe alert!)




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