Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Why They Lover Her in Columbus

Over at The Plank, Josh Patashnik notes that the latest Ohio poll has Clinton up by nine. He also bring up this point:

In addition, there's some strange geographic variation--Obama's winning by seven points in the Cincinnati area, but losing by a full 30 points in the Columbus area (this despite the fact that Cincinnati has only marginally more African-Americans than Columbus, and actually has more senior citizens too). In Cleveland and Dayton it's effectively tied, while Clinton's way ahead in Toledo and rural southeastern Ohio. Perhaps commenters with more knowledge of Ohio political demography than I have might shed some light on what's going on.

The best explanation for this is that Cincinnati has traditionally been a very Republican area, probably the most Republican large city in the U.S. (Bush actually won Hamilton County in 2004). To the extent that Obama does better among dissenting Republicans and independents, he's probably more likely to find them in greater numbers in the Cincinnati area.


escargot555 said...

That explanation for Cincinnati might be backward. I think it's more likely that groups that have been strong for Clinton -- older voters, blue-collars, Catholics -- are disproportionately Republican in Cincinnati and are thus not in the Democratic primary electorate.

Conversely, I think one reason Clinton did so well in Massachusetts is that almost all blue-collar and high school educated voters participate in the Democratic primary there.

Anonymous said...

Sounds like a bad poll to me. Cincinnati and Cleveland are much older cities than Columbus, and they -- particularly Cleveland -- are part of the rust belt. Columbus is white collar and much more cutting edge than coastal dwellers imagine. Its economy rests on government, Ohio State University, Cardinal Health, Nationwide Insurance, Abercrombie & Fitch, Limited Brands and a raft of other employers that didn't exist 20 years ago. It's widely recognized as socially tolerant, it has -- in Midwestern terms -- a huge gay and lesbian population, and it wins numerous awards as a top city for African-American professionals. In other words, it seems to me to be Obama territory.