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    May 13, 2008

    Dissecting West Virginia

    Posted by: Chris

    I'm not a snob. Really. I'm originally from Arkansas, after all, so I've felt the brunt of redneck jokes and the like.  But now that Barack Obama has a mathematical lock on the nomination, it seems a bit silly for CNN's Bill Schneider to dissect the exit poll data from the Mountain State as if it were Iowa or New Hampshire (or even North Carolina or Indiana).

    Up till now, Schneider has come up with only one data point from West Virginia that speaks to me:

    Is Barack Obama's former pastor still an issue for voters? We asked West Virginia Democrats whether they think Barack Obama shares the views of the Rev. Jeremiah Wright.

    Just over 50 percent say Obama does share Wright's controversial views while 47 percent say he does not.

    Whatever you think about Obama's judgment remaining in Wright's congregation, etc., to believe he shares Wright's twisted values requires actual malevolence toward the Illinois senator -- or, more likely, a sense that "those people" are all alike.

    One other West Virginia nugged, this via Politico's Ben Smith:

    "I'm going to vote for the colored guy," said Henry Ford -- "no, not that Henry Ford," the 87-year old retired carpenter in the Napa Auto Parts hat pointed out. "I don't dislike her, but I don't think a woman can be president of the United States. I don't think she can handle the job."

    Even Borat couldn't have said it better.

    Saturday Night Live - Appalachian Emergency Room



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    1. Susan J on May 14, 2008 4:52:04 AM:

      It's an excellent point (albeit not very p.c.) but I beg to differ on one issue. You are, indeed, a snob :)

    1. Susan J on May 14, 2008 4:57:52 AM:

      Whoops. Didn't mean to triple up there but, on a separate note, I hear you're not really from Arkansas either :)

    1. Tim C on May 14, 2008 8:43:00 AM:

      Clinton takes WVA in a landslide, which is not surprising. I have family living there, who have also lived in other parts of the country, including the Old South, who tell me that WVA (95% Caucasian population) is probably the most racist state they have lived in. Or, as my brother put it, "There's no way they're going to support a black man for President". Apparently the first draft of the state's constitution contained a clause that forbid free blacks from immigrating to the state and settling there. While Congress made them remove the clause from the document, it couldn't make them remove it from their hearts.

    1. Chester on May 14, 2008 11:40:33 AM:

      I had family living there for a while too and I met very many nice folk. I'm hopeful that whatever racial animosity exists will pass along with the older generation. It's a very "senior" state.
      As for the bigots, in the GE I would expect them to pick McSame over Clinton since for most of them, sexist attitudes went right along with the racist ones.

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