Barack Obama is a Chevy Volt, or possibly a Yugo

posted at 6:36 pm on April 13, 2012 by Karl

Those are the partial results from a focus group of Independent voters in Denver, CO and Richmond, VA sponsored by Resurgent Republic:

Participants in all four focus groups were asked, “If President Obama was a car, what kind of car would he be and why?” Voters who still approve of President Obama do not perceive him as a risky choice, but on the other spectrum, voters who disapprove believe he hasn’t delivered and question whether he can change course moving forward. Positive responses liken Obama to practical cars: a minivan (family friendly), an Accord or Camry (not flashy or ostentatious), or a Jeep (navigates hurdles). Those who hold a more negative opinion of the President compare him to cars with persistent problems: an old luxury sports car (looks good on the outside, but what’s under the hood?), Chevy Volt (good idea, but no infrastructure to support it), or a Yugo (all flash, no dash).

That’s the spicy blog fodder in these results, but the second bullet-point is probably more significant:

President Obama’s strength with these voters is based upon his personal appeal not policy approval. These Independents like the President, and they praise his “family focus” and view him as more authentic than the average politician. However, participants’ personal regard for President Obama does not transfer to his policies. When asked what they like most about the President, participants refer almost solely to personal traits like his character and speaking skills. At best, they credit President Obama for trying, but offer minimal support for his policies, including the economic stimulus or health care reform. Compared to four years ago, these voters are not where they thought they’d be today, so as a result, they are not convinced President Obama is leading in the right direction.

Focus groups do not produce scientific results, but the responses here track the results of the latest Third Way poll of independents and “swing independents,” which shows Indies closer to Mitt Romney on the issues, but giving Obama higher favorables than Romney. [Note: Obama's unfavorables are equal to Romney's -- and more strongly unfavorable -- in this poll.] Resurgent Republic suggests the overall economic picture may ultimately weigh on Obama. Are they right?

As it turns out, they may well be right. As political scientist John Sides notes at the NYT, voters’ perceptions of candidates as people are not necessarily consequential to presidential election outcomes, in part because perceptions of candidates are more a consequence than a cause of voting, in part because there are many potential trait dimensions on which voters could evaluate candidates. Sides tends to emphasize the role of partisanship is shaping these perceptions, but there is some evidence the same is true of independents (although I am unaware of data for true independents). For example, in the days before the 2008 election, the Washington Post-ABC News daily tracking poll showed a big shift among Indies on whether issues or qualities rate as the more important factor in their vote. At the same time, McCain’s edge among those more concerned with personal qualities shrank by five percent. In a terrible economic environment for the GOP, those numbers look like rationalization. Four years later, the establishment’s hope that Obama’s personal qualities will carry him to victory in a weak economy may end up looking like a rationalization also.

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More like a Trabant……..

RealMc on April 13, 2012 at 6:37 PM

More like a Trabant……..

RealMc on April 13, 2012 at 6:37 PM

Bah. Beat me to it.

How about a Lada?

angryed on April 13, 2012 at 6:38 PM

“If President Obama was a car, what kind of car would he be and why?

Clearly, OBOZO would be the socialistmobile, with the following features:

1. It runs only on biomass fuel, i.e. hot, steamy piles of d-cRAT BS (an infinite and unlimited “resource”)
2. It has dainty bows and ribbons all over it (thanks to Barney Frank).
3. It will be free to society’s slugs and slackers, but all hard-working American citizens will pay triple the actual cost (per hussein’s “wealth re-distribution” plan.)
4. It doesn’t need insurance, since each car comes with a dedicated trial lawyer to sue the sh** out of everyone for everything related to the car and its use (thanks to adulterer trial lawyer John Edwards).
5. It costs four times what other cars cost, since it can only be built by d-cRAT-supporting union personnel with excessive salaries, gold-plated medical benefits and humongous pensions. The car must be built using three union members to do the job a single non-union person could do.
6. The car makes only extreme left turns.
7. There will be a union-dues fee attached to the price which, as usual, goes directly to the d-cRAT party.
8. The car has 20 Straw Holders for those who also enjoy the favorite nose candy of TheOne.
9. The car has a voice response system, but it only speaks and understands illegal immigrant spanish.
10. You can get it in any color you want, so long as you want black. It will be a hate-crime to re-paint it any other color.

TeaPartyNation on April 13, 2012 at 6:39 PM

Barack Obama IS a Chevy Volt…

He’s overpriced, government subsidized, doesn’t work as advertised, and the only people that truly love him are enviro-whackos and elitist college professors…

Political Wrinkles
http://politicalwrinkles.com

cnredd on April 13, 2012 at 6:40 PM

A Pinto…

Seven Percent Solution on April 13, 2012 at 6:42 PM

Obama is an Edsel.

portlandon on April 13, 2012 at 6:42 PM

I choose the Gremlin!

bluemarlin on April 13, 2012 at 6:43 PM

Focus groups do not produce scientific results

Particularly when they are asked a question that begins “If President Obama was a car….”

Happy Nomad on April 13, 2012 at 6:43 PM

Obama car:

Edsel
Pinto
Gremlin
Vega
Chevette

portlandon on April 13, 2012 at 6:45 PM

Over-hyped, heavily subsidized, and still only for wealthy folks?

rogerb on April 13, 2012 at 6:46 PM

He’s a Pyeonghwa.

bernverdnardo1 on April 13, 2012 at 6:46 PM

he is a Pinto…in heavy Atlanta traffic…

ProfShadow on April 13, 2012 at 6:49 PM

He’s a Fisker Karma in brick mode.

bernverdnardo1 on April 13, 2012 at 6:49 PM

A Yugo is about right. Romney is a Volvo.

Falz on April 13, 2012 at 6:50 PM

A Pinto…

Seven Percent Solution on April 13, 2012 at 6:42 PM

On the south side in the bath houses getting hit from behind?

tom daschle concerned on April 13, 2012 at 6:53 PM

The only way you’ll get anywhere in a Yugo….

portlandon on April 13, 2012 at 6:53 PM

Soetoro does not equal two Vespas.

BHO Jonestown on April 13, 2012 at 6:54 PM

Trabant is right.

Philly on April 13, 2012 at 6:56 PM

He’s a 71 chevy Vega

Mini-14 on April 13, 2012 at 6:59 PM

Well, someone has to post it:

Paul Shanklin – In a Yugo

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MqTKZgEW8pM

bernverdnardo1 on April 13, 2012 at 7:00 PM

He’d be part of that new line from the “bailouts and design division” of Government Motors:

The new Chevy Marxist It comes in whatever color we say…..and you’ll like it.

Tim_CA on April 13, 2012 at 7:01 PM

The Volt is more likely to catch fire this election season.

Bmore on April 13, 2012 at 7:02 PM

Yeah the Chevy Vega,forgot about that one.Another GM abortion along with the Corvaie.

jeffinsjvca on April 13, 2012 at 7:05 PM

Volkswagen Golf?

vermin on April 13, 2012 at 7:08 PM

Drowning Mona. Watch it if you haven’t seen it. The Yugo was tested in a small town in upstate New York I believe. No problems with the cars. This gives too much credit to The Won.

ahlaphus on April 13, 2012 at 7:08 PM

A Corvair – unsafe at ANY speed.

ajacksonian on April 13, 2012 at 7:09 PM

A Stanley Steamer.

profitsbeard on April 13, 2012 at 7:10 PM

He’s the kind of ‘guy’ that I expect to find in a chick car like a Honda Prelude, a VW Beetle or Jetta or a Mazda Miata.

slickwillie2001 on April 13, 2012 at 7:11 PM

Chevy Dolt.

Actually, more like a foot powered scooter.

rbj on April 13, 2012 at 7:11 PM

The Volt is more likely to catch fire this election season.

Bmore on April 13, 2012 at 7:02 PM

Now in three hot new colors, -Fire Engine Red, Smoke Gray, and Charcoal Metallic!

slickwillie2001 on April 13, 2012 at 7:14 PM

To bad Pontiac is no more: It could have been a Pontiac FireTurd….

gullxn on April 13, 2012 at 7:14 PM

Ah! Good choices all! Now what bumper sticker would he have on that fancy algae eatin machine?

countmein on April 13, 2012 at 7:14 PM

My Sister in law had one of these. It was actually fairly quick. I had a friend who got one of the 66 models. I have to tell you for what ever problems it may have had. It stuck to the road hard on the sharp turns. I’m not giving an endorsement of either but I actually remember some favorable characteristics with both.

Bmore on April 13, 2012 at 7:16 PM

jeffinsjvca on April 13, 2012 at 7:05 PM

jeffinsjvca, this was meant for you, I forgot to quote your comment. Sorry.

Bmore on April 13, 2012 at 7:16 PM

Bmore on April 13, 2012 at 7:18 PM

He’s the kind of ‘guy’ that I expect to find in a chick car like a Honda Prelude, a VW Beetle or Jetta or a Mazda Miata.

slickwillie2001 on April 13, 2012 at 7:11 PM

Wearing a “safety helmet”, sporting a pink polo, and driving with the seat all the way forward.

I’m with you.

Tim_CA on April 13, 2012 at 7:19 PM

VW Thing

RickB on April 13, 2012 at 7:34 PM

VW Thing

RickB on April 13, 2012 at 7:34 PM

That was the thing wasn’t it. Retro WWII look. Very Interesting.

Bmore on April 13, 2012 at 7:43 PM

He’s the kind of ‘guy’ that I expect to find in a chick car like a Honda Prelude, a VW Beetle or Jetta or a Mazda Miata.
 
slickwillie2001 on April 13, 2012 at 7:11 PM

 
Don’t knock the Miata too much. It’s the most raced car in the US on any given weekend.

rogerb on April 13, 2012 at 7:48 PM

the People’s Car of course- the Volkswagen- created in 1937 by a Nazi tarde union- the German Labour Front (Deutsche Arbeitsfront).

it was a disaster- the government controlled nazi car company . although people ” bought” one – through payments- they knew they’d never receive the actual car. the war started and production of military vehicles took over. no one with got their Strength through Joy wagon.

the volt = Strength through Joy wagon.

mittens on April 13, 2012 at 7:50 PM

rogerb on April 13, 2012 at 7:48 PM

Another Mazda product that used to rock was the RX-7. Had a friend who had a private banked asphalt track and we used to drive the crap out of the thing. Very well balanced.

Bmore on April 13, 2012 at 7:56 PM

An Amish buggy without the horse.

Steve Z on April 13, 2012 at 8:02 PM

When the economy sucks, people vote their wallet.

GarandFan on April 13, 2012 at 8:14 PM

Stop picking on the Edsel. It was a good car. An ugly car, but a good car.

Wander on April 13, 2012 at 8:46 PM

Another Mazda product that used to rock was the RX-7. Had a friend who had a private banked asphalt track and we used to drive the crap out of the thing. Very well balanced.
 
Bmore on April 13, 2012 at 7:56 PM

 
Agreed. A friend had one of each generation, and the ’93-’95 RX-7 was arguably the best looking car to come out of Japan. Exceptional performer, too. Unfortunately not that robust and very popular for crapping out, though. A bad match.
 
But if I won the lottery I’d track down a non-modified example for my garage in a heartbeat.

rogerb on April 13, 2012 at 9:14 PM

PS- No spoiler, though. They’re a bit much for my taste.

rogerb on April 13, 2012 at 9:16 PM

He’s a Pacer, no get up and go and you can see right through him.

Rio Linda Refugee on April 13, 2012 at 9:22 PM

Volkswagen Golf?

vermin on April 13, 2012 at 7:08

That’s funny.
I’m going with Yugo just because that was the biggest piece of crap I ever had the misfortune of driving. Volt a close 2nd.

tbear44 on April 13, 2012 at 9:25 PM

You’re all wrong!…he’s still a POS!

KOOLAID2 on April 13, 2012 at 9:34 PM

He is a Gremlin but they’ve done a lot to make him grow up looking human.
-

RalphyBoy on April 13, 2012 at 9:54 PM

Barack Obama IS a Chevy Volt…

He’s overpriced, government subsidized, doesn’t work as advertised, and the only people that truly love him are enviro-whackos and elitist college professors…

Political Wrinkles
http://politicalwrinkles.com

cnredd on April 13, 2012 at 6:40 PM

WINNER: Retire the thread.

landlines on April 13, 2012 at 10:10 PM

PS- No spoiler, though. They’re a bit much for my taste.

rogerb on April 13, 2012 at 9:16 PM

I have a close friend who has a cherry 76 clean as you’ll find. Low miles. It has been sitting garaged for a good while. So I can’t even venture as to whether the motor is free or not, but it is primo. I got back over here late, but is I see you around I’ll mention it to ya again.

Bmore on April 14, 2012 at 12:06 AM

Honorable mentions:

Reliant Robin

Renault Alliance 1983 Motor Trend Car of the Year Winner

Renault 5 (Le Car)

Chevrolet Citation 1980 Motor Trend Car of the Year Winner

Ford Mustang II 1974 Motor Trend Car of the Year Winner

Left Coast Right Mind on April 14, 2012 at 1:23 AM

A Corvair – unsafe at ANY speed.

ajacksonian on April 13, 2012 at 7:09 PM

Good choice, since the Corvair also had its brains in its rear.

However, I’d opt for the Chevette as a Zero car. Didn’t work, had no value whatsoever, served no constructive purpose, cheap, union made, unable to be repaired, instant buyer remorse, nasty reminder of the Carter administration years, made lots of whiny noises, no substance under the hood, one of the worst ever at its profession, irritatingly loud, fan club consists of nitwits, and first built outside the United States.

MrKleenexMuscles on April 14, 2012 at 3:04 AM

More like a Trabant……..

RealMc on April 13, 2012 at 6:37 PM

LOL
I knew someone would beat me to it.
~(Ä)~

Karl Magnus on April 14, 2012 at 11:12 AM

He would be a foreign car…What kind of car do they make in Kenya?

Nozzle on April 14, 2012 at 12:30 PM

A little something I made a couple of years ago when the picture of Obama in the Volt was new.

Dodd on April 14, 2012 at 12:35 PM

A cross between the Valiant and the Comet called a – Vomet

jb34461 on April 14, 2012 at 1:36 PM

hold on…you’re giving Yugo a bad name.

EternalVigilance on April 14, 2012 at 2:19 PM

He’s the kind of ‘guy’ that I expect to find in a chick car like a Honda Prelude, a VW Beetle or Jetta or a Mazda Miata.

slickwillie2001 on April 13, 2012 at 7:11 PM

Please don’t insult chick’s that way. He’s more likely to be in some sort of farm animal trailer or the lead lemming that runs over the cliff.

acyl72 on April 15, 2012 at 9:01 AM

Yugo (all flash, no dash).

Ummm….not even close. The Yugo looked like a malformed Dodge Omni at best. It has no flash much less dash.

cabbie25 on April 15, 2012 at 2:39 PM

He’s a Lada president.

andycanuck on April 15, 2012 at 6:29 PM