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Tags: Conservatives | Abandoned

Conservatives Abandoned McCain; Lost Soul to Bush

By    |   Sunday, 09 November 2008 05:41 PM

Headlines (Scroll down for complete stories):
1. Exit Polls Reveal Conservatives Abandoned McCain
2. Bob Barr Pleased With Libertarian Showing
3. Newspapers Outperforming TV Network News
4. American Spectator: Conservatives Sold Their Souls for Bush
5. We Heard: Rahm Emanuel, David Axelrod, Gwen Ifill

1. Exit Polls Reveal Conservatives Abandoned McCain

Democrat Barack Obama garnered a surprising 20 percent of the vote from conservatives who cast ballots on Election Day, top-ranked radio-talker Rush Limbaugh told listeners.

Citing exit polls, Limbaugh also said on Wednesday that Republican John McCain lost independents and moderates by a margin of 60 percent to 39 percent.

“McCain only got 89 percent of the Republican vote,” Limbaugh said. “He only got 80 percent of the conservative vote.

“And therein lies the tale, the recipe offered up by the wizards of smart in the Republican Party and on our side — for whatever reason we have to abandon our base, and we’ve gotta broaden our base . . . 

“I have nothing against going out and getting Democrats and independents to vote for you. But not by behaving like a Democrat or independent.”

Fox News commissioned extensive exit polling on Election Day. Some highlights:

  • 75 percent of voters said the U.S. is headed in the wrong direction, and these voters went solidly for Obama — 62 percent to McCain’s 36 percent.
  • 63 percent of voters said the economy was the most important issue facing the nation, and they backed Obama, 53 percent to 44 percent.
  • 48 percent said they are “very worried” that the economic crisis will hurt their family’s finances in the coming year, and they voted for Obama,
    60 percent to 38 percent.
  • Voters who said they wanted a president who can bring about change overwhelmingly went for Obama, 89 percent to 9 percent.
  • Despite predictions that the 2008 election would bring a sharp increase
    in the number of young voters, people under age 30 comprised just
    18 percent of all voters, up from 17 percent in the past three presidential elections and down from 21 percent in 1992. These voters went for Obama, 66 percent to 32 percent.
  • Among the 11 percent of voters who were casting ballots in a presidential election for the first time, 68 percent voted for Obama and 31 percent chose McCain.
  • 18 percent of voters who supported President Bush in 2004 defected from the GOP and supported Obama this year.
  • Women chose Obama over the McCain-Palin ticket by a margin of 56 percent to 43 percent.
  • 52 percent of white Catholics voted for McCain, compared to 47 percent
    for Obama.
  • Black voters comprised 13 percent of the electorate and 95 percent of them backed Obama. White voters favored McCain by a 12-point margin.
  • Hispanics helped Obama win the battleground state of Florida, voting for the Democrat over the Republican, 57 percent to 42 percent. In 2004, President Bush garnered 56 percent of the Hispanic vote.
  • In Pennsylvania, 20 percent of Democrats who voted for Hillary Clinton over Obama in the primary voted for McCain on Tuesday.

Editor's Note:

2. Bob Barr Pleased With Libertarian Showing

Libertarian presidential candidate Bob Barr is delighted by his showing on Election Day — and his candidacy seemingly cost Republican John McCain a victory in a key battleground state.

Barr’s popular vote total of just over 490,000 was only a small fraction of the more than 56.7 million votes McCain received or the roughly 64.4 million votes for Barack Obama.

But in North Carolina, his impact was significant.

When The Associated Press declared Obama the winner in the state, he had a 13,693-vote edge over McCain. By then Barr had already tallied more than 25,200 votes in North Carolina, according to the Boston Globe.

Barr, a former Republican congressman from Georgia, is thought to have siphoned far more votes from McCain than from Obama.

No Democratic presidential candidate had won North Carolina since Jimmy Carter was elected in 1976.

For a time, Barr was also the difference in Indiana. With almost all precincts reporting, he had 1.1 percent of the vote while Obama had 49.9 percent and McCain had 49 percent. In the end, however, Obama totaled 50 percent, McCain 49 percent, and Barr 1 percent.

“This is just the beginning of the new Libertarian Party,” Barr said in a statement.

“In these next four years, there will be an even greater need for a political party fully dedicated to lower taxes, smaller government, and more individual freedom — a voice for liberty.”

Editor's Note:

3. Newspapers Outperforming TV Network News

Amid rampant talk about the decline and looming death of newspapers in the U.S., one fact has been largely overlooked — dailies are actually faring better than the three major network newscasts.

Responding to an observation by Brian Williams of “NBC Nightly News” that “changing reader habits are killing the old newspaper business,” David Zeeck of the Tacoma News Tribune analyzed the relative performance of newspapers and TV news telecasts.

He said Williams’ claim that newspaper circulation is declining almost 1 percent a month is “bunk.”

In fact, Zeeck noted that daily newspaper circulation nationwide was down only 4.6 percent for the six-month period ending in September, compared to the same period a year ago, according to the Audit Bureau of Circulation.

And online readership was up sharply during that period.

Between 2006 and 2007, nationwide newspaper circulation dropped about 2.5 percent, while ratings for national TV network news fell 6 percent, according to Nielsen data.

And over a 10-year period, from 1997 to 2007, ratings for network news dropped 34 percent, while daily newspaper readership declined only 16.9 percent, Zeeck pointed out.

He added: “If anybody’s getting killed in the 21st-century media market, it’s TV news, not newspapers.”

Editor's Note:

4. American Spectator: Conservatives Sold Their Souls for Bush

Conservatives lost their way by stubbornly standing behind President George Bush even as he pursued policies directly at odds with conservative principles.

That’s the core assertion that Philip Klein, a reporter for The American Spectator, puts forth in the November issue of the conservative magazine.

“While the benefit of hindsight will be required to assess the Bush presidency in its broadest sense, this is nonetheless an important time for conservatives to reflect on what the past eight years has meant for conservatism itself . . . so that conservatives can begin to examine their own behavior during this time, and thus draw lessons from their own mistakes and false assumptions,” Klein writes.

Conservatives made a big mistake by assuming “that just because Bush appealed to their own cultural sensibilities and angered liberals so much, he must be one of their own.”

Klein pointed to a series of mistakes the Bush administration made during its two terms in office, including the launch of “a costly and unnecessary” war in Iraq, the mishandling of Hurricane Katrina, the appointment of Harriet Miers to the Supreme Court, the ballooning of the federal budget, the erosion of civil liberties, and the failure to head off the current economic crisis.

“Because of Bush’s management failures, conservative governance has become associated with incompetence for a generation of Americans,” Klein maintains.

Bush decided that the only path to victory for a Republican was to “co-opt liberalism,” the writer opines, citing the Medicare prescription drug plan and the expansion of the role of the federal government in education.

Conservatives, Klein states, “often deluded themselves into thinking they had more in common with the man than they actually did . . . 

“The bottom line is that for too long, conservatives treated President Bush as one of their own, defended him ferociously, and as a result often gave him a free pass even when his policies and job performance warranted criticism.”

In the future, Klein says, conservatives should actively support policies consistent with their principles and be “more intellectually honest about the flaws of leaders who claim to be conservatives, and more willing to oppose them vigorously when they stray off course.”

Editor's Note:

5. We Heard . . .

THAT President-elect Barack Obama’s newly appointed Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel will be a good man to have on hand if Obama visits Israel — Emanuel speaks Hebrew.

Emanuel’s father, pediatrician Benjamin Emanuel, was born in Jerusalem and was reportedly a member of the Irgun, a militant Zionist group that operated in Palestine between 1931 and 1948.

THAT Emanuel is very close with Obama’s chief strategist David Axelrod and the two spoke frequently during the campaign.

Noting Obama’s huge fundraising haul, Rolling Stone magazine observed:

“Open question: What cut of $700 million did Axelrod & Co. take home? Hard to argue they didn’t earn the cut — whatever it is — but the figure could well be obscene.”

THAT PBS newscaster Gwen Ifill has the inside track to become the late Tim Russert’s permanent replacement as host of NBC’s “Meet the Press.”

The decision may come by early December, and NBC reportedly may let her remain at PBS.

Ifill, author of the upcoming book “The Breakthrough: Politics and Race in the Age of Obama,” moderated the 2008 vice-presidential debate.

Tom Brokaw has served as interim host on “Meet the Press” following Russert’s death in June.

Editor's Note:

Editor's Notes:

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Headlines (Scroll down for complete stories):1. Exit Polls Reveal Conservatives Abandoned McCain2. Bob Barr Pleased With Libertarian Showing3. Newspapers Outperforming TV Network News4. American Spectator: Conservatives Sold Their Souls for Bush5. We Heard: Rahm Emanuel,...
Sunday, 09 November 2008 05:41 PM
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