If you ever want to find examples of how slavishly and bizarrely the mainstream media following similar lines of thinking – the current state of the American elections is a good one.
But before I expand on that, consider this. African Americans constitute around 14% of the American electorate. They also form around 50% of the Democratic party’s base and are seen as its most loyal constituency. So you’d think they would feature pretty importantly on what Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama need to do win presidential election. With American voters so polarised its vital that any candidate reach all parts of the Democrat base and can do well with independents.
But here’s the thing. Everyone in the media since Pennsylvania has jumped on the same bandwagon that Obama is in trouble. He’s not and there are simple reasons why he’s not:
(a) Hillary Clinton remains a more polarising figure (and the polls support this view) nationally than Obama. He is still ahead of her in nationwide polls, after being 20% behind when this election started.
(b) After he convincingly wins North Carolina next week there will be zero chance for her to win on delegate numbers. She’ll need to win the remaining states by over 80% in the remaining states to barely catch up in the delegate count.
(c) The super-delegates could hand her victory by joining the Clinton camp in huge droves. But if they do that when she’s behind in delegate numbers then the three most important constituencies to Democrats – African Americans, young voters and liberals, would be mightly pissed off and be much more likely to stay away during the Presidential Election.
The super-delegates know this and they are still coming out for Obama in greater numbers than for Clinton. The mainstream media though, which seems to have forgotten African Americans (now there’s a surprise!), has found a different narrative.
Both the Guardian (wtf??) and The Times tell us how Obama is now in deep shit after Pennsylvania. Whatever supposed love-affair they had with Obama has turned into an outright one-sided story against him. I thought the Guardian at least would take African Americans more seriously.
But anyway… apparently the problem is that white voters are still not warming to Obama. The Times says around 10% of white Democrat voters (in Pennsylvania) wouldn’t vote for Obama while the Guardian says 19% of American voters in total were not ready to elect an African American.
But both those numbers are actually lower than the 24% who said in an earlier poll that America was not ready for a Black President. And even that number had fallen from an earlier high. So in actual fact more Americans are coming to terms with having a black president.
The Guardian article and the Times piece are concerned with how Obama will pick up white working class voters (his Achilles heel is older white women) but they don’t ask – what will Hillary Clinton do to get the black vote?
In an interview with the New York Times, the most powerful black congressman, James E Clyburn, said this:
In an interview with The New York Times late Thursday, Mr. Clyburn said Mr. Clintonâ€™s conduct in this campaign had caused what might be an irreparable breach between Mr. Clinton and an African-American constituency that once revered him.
â€œWhen he was going through his impeachment problems, it was the black community that bellied up to the bar,â€ Mr. Clyburn said. â€œI think black folks feel strongly that this is a strange way for President Clinton to show his appreciation.â€
Mr. Clyburn added that there appeared to be an almost unanimous view among African-Americans that Mr. and Mrs. Clinton were committed to doing everything they possibly could to damage Mr. Obama to a point that he could never win in the general election.
He added in an another interview that the media wasn’t bothered by the fact that if Clinton, having pissed off half the Democrat constituency, won the nomination, it was going to be mighty difficult for her to win the election. But, our “senior correspondent” for the Times is still worried that because 10% of white Pennsylvanians wouldn’t vote for Obama, he was finished.
But oh no, the media, including the fabled “liberal voice” of the Guardian, have found a new script and they’re sticking to it.
No one’s asking why the MSM is giving John MacCain such an easy time. Apart from the ever reliable Jon Stewart of course.
Obama will eventually win the nomination. But it won’t be thanks to the media and their obsession with his bowling score or whether he wore an American flag on his lapel. He will win despite them.
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Filed in: Current affairs,United States