Scary smart Anglachel, again:
In short, Obama, taken here as an exemplar of the liberal elite, is simply wrong in his estimation of the core Democratic constituency. They did not want what he was offering because they did not see themselves as the ones who needed to be changed, and they have consistently given their votes to the person who has focused on their explicit economic needs and their desire to be safe in an unsettled world while being respectful of them as people.
The political problem, the way in which a faultline is turning into a fissure, is in Obama's response to not getting these votes. When Hillary did not win their votes, as in Wisconsin, she did not turn around and revile them as "Archie Bunkers" or as "bitter". I have never heard a word from her or her campaign calling AA voters racists for giving their votes to Obama. She simply does not denigrate the voters. The Obama campaign response to losing New Hampshire was to instantly accuse working class residents of being closet racists and this toxic and grievously insulting charge continues to this day. The more his campaign trumpets this accusation, the greater the resistence to his campaign, which then pumps up its rhetoric, which offends more people, etc.
Where is this going to go? First off, should Obama be the nominee, he can kiss the general election goodbye... I think you see a significant section of the working class simply turn away from participation, depressing turn out and costing the party electoral success. They will stay away until the party offers them candidates who talk to their material interests instead of to the leadership's fantasy of being modern day Solons.
There is also the case that the demographics of the left are changing far more rapidly than the elite narrative, which appears to be permanently stuck in 1980. College educated voters are increasingly female because college graduates are increasingly female. Running campaigns that piss on strong women candidates, even those of us who should be Obama swooners, ain't going to hack it. Conversely, this means a larger portion of the male population will not be college educated, increasing the ranks of the dreaded Bunkers and Bubbas. The party needs to figure out how to make itself relevant to the intrests of both these groups. In all classes, the population is incresingly Latino and Asian, decreasing both black and white percentages. Speaking about racism as though there are only two colors will not be relevant to these groups.
The problem in this election is the tunnel vision of the party elite who insist on demonizing wide swaths of Democratic Party voters based on biases that simply do not reflect demographic or political reality. There will be a long-term political price to pay for insisting that working class voters don't have concrete interests, but are only voting out of bigotry. Obama will pay his part of that price soon, whether in the primaries or in the general. The party will be paying for years.
Read the entire thing.
I found her point about the changing demographics particularly interesting. Despite Obama claiming to be the candidate of the future, he doesn't seem to have focused nearly as much on the changing demographics of the country. Hillary is the candidate of the hispanic (particularly Mexican and Puerto Rican Americans) and Asian voters. She is also the candidate whose staff is by far the most diverse:
Among the major Dem and GOP candidates, Clinton is the only one with a majority of women in her staff; she also has the lowest percentage of white staff members. Other than Maggie Williams, her African-American campaign manager who replaced her Latina manager, Patti Solis Doyle, the major names associated with the Clinton campaign are of white men (Garin, Wolfson, Penn). Yet, her staff is less than 40% white, and around 20% Asian and Black (and just under 20% Latino). Obama's campaign, in contrast, is 20% female, and almost 60% white, with no AAPI representation at all.
So while Obama claims to be the candidate of tomorrow, Clinton's campaign looks much more like the future. In a lot of way, Obama's campaign looks like the past.
Indeed, look at how he's played the race card, as if there are only two sides to it. I wonder what some of the hispanic Super Delegates think about Clyburn's and Lacy's recent stirrings. In the 2000 census, hispanics and African Americans both accounted for around 12% of the population (with Mexican Americans alone accounting for more than 7%). And while Clinton isn't hispanic, she has been the overwhelming choice among, at least, Mexican Americans. For that matter, I wonder how Asian Americans feel. I know that one of the reasons they went so heavily for Clinton out here in California is that they felt ignored by the Obama campaign.
It's all very interesting.