Thursday, March 22, 2007

Jim Muir, Obama and Hilary on the same page? The world might end tomorrow

I don't know if you caught Jim Muir's column in the Southern today, he is now against the Iraq War. I have a new respect for Jim after reading this column, he is paying attention and seems right on point.

There was another story about the tussle for position between Hilary and Obama positioning for the Presidential race in '08 that was kind of interesting (no link on the SI homepage, sorry). Hilary voted for the War in '02, and Obama came out against it then. Since Obama was elected, he has been voting to fund the troops, so Hilary is trying to frame the discussion to make them look more equal to the anti-war crowd. Obama says, hey, the troops are over there and I don't agree with that, but you have to support them.

Interesting stats from that article - 61% of Americans are against the Iraq War and 91% of Democrats are against the war. 91% is a big, big number. Now if 43% of Americans are Dems and 90% are against the war, that makes 39% of the total. So, of everyone else 22 of 57 or a little less then 40% is against the war.

So, if you are dealing with Republicans and Independents, Muir is in the minority. We might even call him a front runner? Hilary is playing to a 90% of Dems, that isn't very hard to adjust your position under that pressure.

Math can be fun.


Scott said...

You're understating Republican and independent opposition to the war. 43-percent of Americans being Dems is a gross overstatement. According to the National Election Study, the percentage of Democrats (not independents who lean Democrat) has been hovering around 33-percent for some time now.

Now, the data are a little dated and a little different, but in late February a CBS poll had 71% of all Americans disapproving of how the war was handled by Bush. Broken down by party, 44% of Republicans and 73% of independents disapproved. (Source:

Peter in Carbondale said...

The latest numbers are showing a surge of Dems, I just saw numbers in the 43 number last week. Feel free to split hairs, I do, but it depends how the survey questions are asked.

Scott said...

Those temporary changes aren't people changing their partisanship, at least not in any meaningful sense. The NES question is the gold standard here, both in the way the question is asked and in the way they think about partisanship. Enough trees have been killed on this subject to settle the matter.