Congratulations, President McCain

THERE, I’ve said it.

In just over a fortnight, Senator John McCain will be elected America’s 44th president, confounding the pundits and the polls. Barack Obama will become the newest member of a not-very-exclusive club of Failed Democrat Presidential Candidates.

Why do I say this at a time when, apparently, some bookmakers are already paying out on Obama winning?

Do I really need to say it? Please don’t make me. Just read this.

Obviously, I hope I’m wrong, as do the vast majority of sensible UK citizens. 

But whatever political intuition I may or may not have for the politics of a country I’ve visited fewer than half a dozen times is telling me Obama’s not going to make it.

Dammit.

Obama won't be leading McCain after November 4. And yes, I just wanted an excuse to use this picture again

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21 Comments

Filed under Politics, United States

21 responses to “Congratulations, President McCain

  1. Wow, I suspect this is typically Scottish pessimism at play here.

    I really don’t think the Bradley Effect will play here. Bookies are already paying out and US political analysts, much more aware of any latent racism in the States, all seem to agree Obama has it in the bag.

    McCain may run it close but, more likely, I think he’s going to get hammered.

  2. One area where I really hope you’re right and I’m wrong, Jeff. By the way, shouldn’t you be at SNP conference or something?

  3. I believe the Bradley / Wilder Effect will play a significant factor in this election. The near constant cries of racism against the Republicans and conservative independents has forced a lot of people to say that they support Obama. To do otherwise is socially damning and sometimes physically risky.

    Once in the privacy of the voting booth these social constraints and fears will be removed.

  4. For a long time I’ve being telling anyone who’ll listen to me (i.e. no one) that we’ll see a woman US president (perhaps Palin (arrrg) or Clinton)) before we see a non-white one. I feel another 1992 moment looming for lots of (small l) liberals…

  5. Dangerous thinking. It implies that if Obama loses he will lose because of his race and not because Americans prefer McCain.

    This strikes me as pre-emptive excuses.

  6. Chris – if McCain were leading in the polls, then you would have a point. But if Obama maintains his lead right up until the point when voters pull the curtain behind them in the booths, then I think we can all draw a pretty inescapable conclusion.

  7. Johnny Norfolk

    The problem we have it that most of the media led by the BBC are all for Obama. They were for Gore when Bush won . So you do not know the reality of the outcome. People who support Obama like Labour supporters tend to be very vocal, and believe their own propaganda ( spin, lies). They are from people who do not earn a living in the real sense of the word ie emoloyed by the government. I would not like to call it as people who vote Republican like people who vote Tory just do not make the same noise ( they dont have time as they are doing real work.) The resukt will be close and may suprise the BBC.

  8. Yeah, if only Tories on this site were more vocal…

  9. Well, to be fair to you Tom, ‘Malc in the Burgh’ has long suggested McCain will win and Malc has been bang on the money with many unexpected results this year so far (including Glasgow East I’m afraid…)

    Went to SNP Conference yesterday, thanks. Great buzz around the place; watching Salmond making a very good speech at the moment.

  10. An Obama landslide is what we all want – an Obama win by one vote would do, though.

    I think this is the best real prospect of victory for the Democrats since Clinton – but I’m not prepared to count any chickens just yet.

    It looks good, but it could all turn in the last fortnight. I will not believe it until I see Obama come out to make his victory speech.

    I fear the racism element, or the mud sticking from all the nasty negative stuff could yet derail Obama’s campaign.

  11. Hi Tom,

    This might reassure you – the Bradley effect used to exist, but apparently doesn’t any more:

    http://www.fivethirtyeight.com/2008/08/persistent-myth-of-bradley-effect.html

  12. M

    Dya know what Tom? Just because you lost your job it doesn’t mean the whole world has become a miserable place. Your pessimism is appalling. I hope when Barack Obama wins you’ll take your “congratulations” for McCain back and start to become a more positive person. You won’t be out of government forever so stop sulking at the world about your current pause and see it as a chance to take a break and refresh yourself instead.

  13. To be fair, I was always this miserable.

  14. Never expect too much wrt elections – that way you’re far less likely to be disappointed.

    It was only at about 5 am on 2nd May 1997 that I finally conceded that Labour might have a vague chance of not being pipped at the post…

  15. 1982 is a long while ago Tom. And I’m liking the 2006 example and even the potential “Reverse Bradley”. There is another worrying phenomenon of course … which is the “it’s in the bag” syndrome which leaves some voters – esp if encountering queues or harrassment – willing to leave it to others.

    It is seriously very hard indeed to imagine why ANYONE could possibly prefer McCain/Palin. The UK equivalent would be something like Tebbit/Dorries.

  16. bensix

    To do otherwise is socially damning and sometimes physically risky.

    Uhh, yeah, because opinion polls are so public.

  17. Tom,

    I’ve actually blogged on this myself http://conormcginn.blogspot.com/2008/10/time-to-move-beyond-bradley-effect.html but come to the opposite conclusion!

    Conor

  18. Fair point, bensix. I was extrapolating from polls to public support. I should have kept it tightly focused on just opinion polls.

    Trust me though, it’s dangerous in some areas to known as a McCain supporter.

  19. donpaskini brought us halfway to reality. The other half has also been done by FiveThiryEight, from back in May:

    http://www.fivethirtyeight.com/2008/05/black-youth-and-latino-turnout-and.html.

    Obama’s campaign has 40-odd offices for each swing state, plus faith outreach efforts, plus a 30-minute infomercial on the 26th of October. All of this will swamp any vestigial Bradley effect.

  20. The Bradley Effect did not work in the primaries for Obama where results were the same as opinion polls. In the Deval Patrick election for Governor two years ago, the black lawyer was expected to get 57% according to the polls against his white Republican opponent. The result? He polled 57%. The Bradley effect is a myth. Cheer up, Tom.

  21. Except, wasn’t Obama miles ahead the day before the New Hampshire primary? You know, the one that Hillary won by a mile?

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