All entries for Friday 25 January 2008

January 25, 2008

South Carolina

Follow-up to Next Primaries from True Contradictions


My previously rushed entry was actually surprisingly accurate, given the low levels of late research undertaken in its support. I correctly predicted the winner of all 3 races, and got correct ordering on democrats in Nevada and top 4 republicans in South Carolina. I feel like Stephen Colbert – there’s an election happening and I’m talking about awesome I am.

Dirty Politics?

There’s been an increasing trend within the media to portray the democratic race as being contentious and full of racial tension. I’m not convinced that this is quite the terror people make it out to be. Watching the debates, it seems they are a lot more issue focussed than some of the republican debates. (If I had a penny for everytime I heard someone say “Now Ron…” in a patronising manner…)

A lot of what is discussed seems to be about people trying to clarify their record in their words. Still one can always ask for more next time. The latest debate also included one of my favourite moments of the campaign so far: Barrack Obama was asked whether he thought Bill Clinton was the first ‘Black’ President. He responded by saying he’d have to examine some evidence that he hadn’t yet seen, for example his ability to dance. Klassic!

The Primary

Its also worth noting that since I’ve been ignoring Mike Gravel for months (he’s a Taxi driver in NY ffs) we are now down to 3 candidates after Dennis Kucinich’s departure from the race. (On a side note google correct the spelling of Kucinich, but no the capitalisation of his first letter) This is a good thing, since he’s a sideshow, albeit an entertaining one.

The demographics of South Carolina are worth noting as well – a high black population throughout the state, that actually forms a majority amongst registered democrats.

Edwards won the primary here in 2004, his only primary victory of his campaign that year (despite him coming 2nd in delegate count). He was also born in the state, and his populist streak would seem to appeal where there is high unemployment. Unfortunately the strength of his opponents this time are likely to relegate him to 3rd place. He has been coming back a bit in the polls recently here, but its probably too much of a gap to make up before the big day.

Hillary Clinton on paper is another strong contender for South Carolina – her perceived strength on the economy would go down well in a state with an above average unemployment rate and her improved polling nationally since New Hampshire should show through here. I believe she is handicapped here because of strong support along racial lines for Barrack Obama and will place a distant second.

After New Hampshire Obama cannot afford another slip up. His lead in polling data within this state seems formidable, but in reality is no more than he had in New Hampshire at a similar point, several polls also show a large of undecideds. Nonetheless I’m backing him to win it, because strong fundamentals (demographics of race, democrats in southern states better accepting his message) should back him here in a way that was only really equalled by momentum in New Hampshire.

Its worth noting that this is the last democratic race that will have such detailed coverage. Whilst I intend to go in depth on Republican Florida race, the democratic one has 0 delegates and has purely nominal campaigning going on. After that there is Super Tuesday – after which point the races may be decided already (cough especially given Clinton’s lead in California, New York and New Jersey cough). Whilst I intend to give predictions for both sides on super Tuesday, for as many states as I can research there are a potential of 160 placings – so I doubt I will managed in depth coverage of all candidates everywhere.

In a few days I shall be putting up the Republican predictions for Florida, hopefully along with an analysis of campaign strategy.

January 2008

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