Monday, October 13, 2008

Nagourney, the Republicans, and race in presidential politics

Adam Nagourney writes up a breezy little list of six what-if scenarios that might cause McCain to win the presidency. None of the points, except perhaps one of them, actually reflects a dynamic currently in play; even if the one might be in play, they are all contingencies that rely on speculation about what might happen. They sort of fall into the, "if wishes were horses," category.

Halperin summarizes Nagourney's six points this way:
1. Not everyone who has recently registered as a Democrat may vote on Election Day.

2. The Democrats’ improved voter turnout effort may still not work as effectively as the Republicans’ effort.

3. The race may swing back to McCain under the “pendulum theory.”

4. A national security event in the closing days could “shuffle the deck of cards.”

5. Race.

6. The Ayers attack could end up sticking.
Yeah, so what, Adams, in an alternative what-if universe, all the newly registered Democrats actually vote, Obama's turnout effort works without a hitch, the pendulum never swings back, a new economic disaster causes the electoral dynamic to move further to Obama, and the Ayers attack never hits its mark. Fine, what a list of la-la land thinking, but anything is possible, Adam.

It is number five that I find a horrifying comment about the Republicans and their hopes. Nagourney writes without any sense of irony or dismay:
Race is, of course, the question that has hovered over the contest for two years. Are there a significant number of white voters who will not support Mr. Obama because he is black, no matter what they tell pollsters? Some Republicans said they have come to look at this as Mr. McCain’s last, best hope.
What are you saying, Mr. Nagourney? You apparently have evidence that there are Republicans who are pinning their electoral chances on racism? Tell me, sir, where is that article? Why haven't you written it?

It seems to me a scandal that a reporter should have evidence that some Republicans hope that race will defeat Barack Obama and hasn't written a very long and probing piece about it.


Post a Comment