Thursday, March 27, 2008

Our press corps in action

This story is so poorly reasoned it almost isn't worth commenting, but what the hell:

Bickering between Sens. Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama could affect Democratic turnout in the general election, suggests a poll released Thursday.

Fighting between Sens. Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton could drive Democratic turnout this fall.

Sixteen percent of Clinton supporters questioned in a CNN/Opinion Research Corporation survey said they are not likely to vote in the general election if Obama is the Democratic nominee.

An equal number of Obama supporters said they'll sit it out come November if Clinton is their party's nominee.

"The problem for the Democratic Party in November may not be crossover votes: Clinton supporters choosing [Sen. John] McCain in the fall if Obama wins the nomination or Obama voters doing likewise if Clinton gets the nod," CNN polling director Keating Holland said. "The real problem may be that those disaffected Clinton or Obama supporters may just stay at home in November, which could cost the party dearly in some key states.

"If the Obama stay-at-home vote is largely African-American, that will affect Democrats' chances on the ballot in several Southern states and could take states like Virginia off the table completely," Holland said. "It might even hurt Democrats in states where the party relies on heavy turnout in large urban areas, such as Pennsylvania and Ohio.

"And if the Clinton stay-at-home vote is predominantly female, that will hurt the party everywhere," he added.

But polls are just snapshots of how people feel at the moment. If the Democrats can come together and agree on a nominee, most of the ill will could be just a memory by November.

No where in the piece does it talk about how the "bickering" might lead to people staying home. Nowhere do they discuss the possibility that some people are interested in the race specifically because of Hillary or Obama, and would lose interest once either one of them left the race, bickering or no. And then there are the anecdotal examples of Carter and the particularly ridiculous one of Bush the senior tacked on at the end. Vulnerable incumbents attract competitors in a primary -- there's blood in the water. The incumbent is already vulnerable, so of course, such a candidate is more likely to lose a general, primary challenger or no. And Pat Buchanan? Christ. Talk about a reach. There's a marginal guy like that in almost every presidential election you could use to throw out as a support for a lousy argument. How about Jerry Brown, who drug his campaign all the way to the convention in '92? Ah, but he doesn't fit the narrative, so he must be discarded.

Our nation's finest, displaying their powerful reasoning skills.