Pennsylvania governor: My state may be too racist to elect Obama

posted at 3:35 pm on February 12, 2008 by Allahpundit

Reminiscent of Billy Shaheen bringing up Obama’s drug use before New Hampshire and then claiming he had to do it because the evil GOP would assuredly do it during the general. Rendell’s variation: Democrats must act now to neutralize racists in the general — by voting white in the primary. The last gasp of Hillary’s supposed electability advantage:

“You’ve got conservative whites here, and I think there are some whites who are probably not ready to vote for an African-American candidate,” he said bluntly. Our eyes only met briefly, perhaps because the governor wanted to spare the only black guy in the room from feeling self-conscious for backing an obvious loser. “I believe, looking at the returns in my election, that had Lynn Swann [2006 Republican gubernatorial candidate] been the identical candidate that he was –well-spoken [note: Mr. Rendell did not call the brother “articulate”], charismatic, good-looking — but white instead of black, instead of winning by 22 points, I would have won by 17 or so.”

I know I have a habit of sometimes zoning out in these meetings, but it sounded to me like Mr. Rendell had unilaterally declared Pennsylvania to be Alabama circa 1963. Was he suggesting that Pennsylvanians are uniquely racist in ways that folks in the states Mr. Obama has won so far aren’t? By the way, Mr. Obama won Alabama on Super Tuesday, thank you very much!

Estrich, another Hillary supporter (I assume), made the same point yesterday so I’d say we have ourselves a full-blown meme. If the “Bradley effect” is going to torpedo him in the general, how come it hasn’t torpedoed him yet in the primary? Or is this just laying the groundwork for later, in case McCain beats him in the battlegrounds, to chalk the whole thing up to racism and delegitimize the Republican victor that way?

Update: Not to pile on our last best hope, but take five minutes to read the new Atlantic piece about Hillary’s disastrous crony ex-campaign manager and how she managed to blow through stacks of money to no great end. Here’s what the Glacier means when she talks about “experience”:

Rather than punish Solis Doyle or raise questions about her fitness to lead, Clinton chose her to manage the presidential campaign for reasons that should now be obvious: above all, Clinton prizes loyalty and discipline, and Solis Doyle demonstrated both traits, if little else. This suggests to me that for all the emphasis Clinton has placed on executive leadership in this campaign, her own approach is a lot closer to the current president’s than her supporters might like to admit.

Update: Ace makes a good point. To the extent that race explains why Obama’s exit polls don’t match his ballot totals, it doesn’t necessarily follow that he’s losing votes because of it. It may simply be that he’s gaining exit poll points. That is to say, people may prefer Hillary on the merits when they go in the booth but when approached by an exit pollster they may want to show their progressive bona fides by claiming they voted for the minority candidate.

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It’s utterly amazing that he’s basically saying if you don’t vote for Obama, you’re racist.

Well, no, as I think has been argued elsewhere in this thread, he’s for Clinton. He actually endorsed her, so that’s that.

As for the constant Huckabee drumbeat I’ve started to hear from a certain poster, Elmer Gantry has no shot, I don’t care if you take the whole bottle of red pills.

DrSteve on February 12, 2008 at 9:45 PM

Swann has himself and the state GOP to blame for losing to Fast Eddie, not his race, but for those of us who live in Pennsylvania, that’s a dead horse. But all of you who don’t live here, you see what we have to put up with?

rightwingprof on February 13, 2008 at 7:07 AM

The Huckester won’t even give up his primary bid, I doubt he would surrender the Presidency after only four years.

JayHaw Phrenzie on February 12, 2008 at 5:05 PM

You didn’t read what I said. Here it is again, with one addition that improves (not changes) what I said before:

Huckabee/Thompson win in 2008. Michael Steele is given a cabinet position.

For 2012, Fred realizes that he won’t run for president in 2016, so he steps aside so that Huckabee/Steele win in 2012.

In November 2016, say hello to President-Elect Michael Steele

ITookTheRedPill on February 13, 2008 at 8:57 AM

PA’s a mixed bag. Where I live I don’t think there’s going to be a viable challenger for Todd Platts in the general. That’s fine by me, of course, but it always bothers me just a little when people run unopposed for Federal office.

Ed’s probably supporting Clinton because she always leaves the paper bags of nonconsecutive hundreds in the same place.

I do have to say this for him, though — when we had the Amish school shootings last year, he explicitly told everyone at a presser that he didn’t think legislation could stop that sort of thing. I was surprised at the restraint, given everything else he’s said about guns.

DrSteve on February 13, 2008 at 8:59 AM

January 2009:
Mike Huckabee – President
Fred Thompson – Vice-President
Michael Steele – Secretary of …. (you fill in the blank)

Huckabee/Thompson defeats Obama/Edwards in November 2008.

ITookTheRedPill on February 13, 2008 at 9:01 AM

And I have to say, RedPill, that I honestly believe that (not literally, but close enough for politics) everyone who might vote for Huckabee in the general will have voted for him in the primary.

Obama-Huckabee would be the most lopsided loss for Republicans in 2 generations. It would be over for Huck within 10 days of the convention, with the media spinning the Christian Leader nonsense into visions of an incipient American Theocracy.

But at least we’ll be clear on whom to blame.

DrSteve on February 13, 2008 at 9:04 AM

My governor is going to be getting a nice letter from me.

bookwurm322 on February 13, 2008 at 10:23 AM