Election results analyzed
Published 3:57 pm Wednesday, November 12, 2008
Now that the dust has settled on the 2008 Election, let's analyze the results. Barack Obama's victory is being heralded as the awakening of the new America. The fact that an African American can be elected President of the United States is groundbreaking and historic. It shows that America has moved remarkably forward on the race issue.
However, the country is still extremely divided among red and blue states. This election was not a realignment but a further entrenchment of red versus blue. Electorally we are a nation of thirty red Republican states, ten blue Democratic states and ten swing states. The obvious observation is that there are more voters in the ten Democratic and ten swing states than there are in the thirty Republican states.
The swing states, which determine the outcome, voted for Barack Obama because of the economy, not because he was a black man. In fact, the country is in such dire economic straits that any Democrat would have won this race for the White House.
More people vote against someone or something than for someone. The boogie man theory prevails in politics. The boogie man was the economy and George W. Bush. It was inevitable that the Republican Party was going to get blamed for the abysmal economic debacle in which the country finds itself.
The entire Deep South resoundingly renounced Obama and Alabama led the way. While our sister states of South Carolina, Georgia, Mississippi, Louisiana, Tennessee, Kentucky and Arkansas voted for McCain on an average of 57 to 43, Alabama voted 60 to 39 in favor of the GOP candidate. We now have voted nine consecutive times, and ten out of the last twelve elections dating back to 1964, for the Republican candidate for President.
Alabama's overwhelming rejection of Obama's candidacy was deep, divisive and driven along racial lines. Every primarily white county voted for McCain, while every county with a black majority voted for Obama.
The entire Republican Party took it on the chin nationwide, but not in Alabama. We sent Jeff Sessions back to the Senate for a third 6-year term by a 63 to 37 margin. He is one of the ten most conservative U. S. Senators both fiscally and socially.
Our trend of voting for Republicans for state judgeships continued unanimously last Tuesday. Every statewide Republican judicial candidate prevailed. The Appeals Court Republican contingency of Bill Thompson, Beth Kellum and Mary Windom won with an average margin of 55 to 45. In the Supreme Court race Greg Shaw eked out a 14,000 vote win over Democrat Deborah Bell Paseur in an extremely close race that statistically ended 50/50. Both candidates spent over $2.5 million, which ranked it as the most expensive judicial race in the country.
Steve Flowers is a political columnist who served 16 years in the State Legislature. He may be contacted at www.steveflowers.us.