May 21st, 2008
07:38 AM ET
13 years ago

Obama still struggles with some Democrats

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i.l.cnn.net/cnn/2008/POLITICS/05/20/kentucky.democrats/art.split.candidates.ap.jpg caption="Sen. Barack Obama has not had the same success with older, white and blue-collar voters as Sen. Hillary Clinton."]LOUISVILLE, Kentucky (CNN) - Tuesday may end up a big night for Barack Obama, giving him a majority of all possible pledged delegates in the Democratic race for the White House. But exit polling in Kentucky - where CNN is projecting rival Sen. Hillary Clinton will win by a wide margin - suggests that he still has big problems in states with a large majority of older, white and blue-collar voters.

Nearly half of Democratic voters in Kentucky polled Tuesday said they would either vote for Republican Sen. John McCain or not vote at all in November if Obama is the Democratic nominee. Among 1,278 people polled, 33 percent said they would pick McCain over Obama, and 16 percent said they would not vote at all.

By comparison, 76 percent said they would choose Clinton over McCain, with only 17 percent supporting the Republican and 6 percent not voting.

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soundoff (338 Responses)
  1. Kevin from MN

    Geeee Whiz.....voters in Kentucky, a state that Bush scored a landslide victory over Kerry in 2004, say they won't vote for Obama in the general election. Stop the Press! The keys to Obama's victory in November will be to maintain the key blue states, and add a couple of the red states that he's done so well in: Colorado, North/South Carolina, Georgia, Louisiana, Missouri, and perhaps either Kansas or Ohio (depending on which govenor he picks for his running mate Strickland or Sebelius)

    May 21, 2008 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  2. texasdemocrat

    As much as I hate to admit it looks like Obama will end up being the nominee for the party and the first time in my life I will vote Republican. If Obama becomes the president I think we are in for a horrible four years.

    May 21, 2008 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  3. Sad American

    The pendants keep asking what Obama needs to do to address the issue of low income, uneducated whites not seeing Obama as sharing their views. Oh by the way I mean a portion of the rural voters like those of WV and KY. These voters say they would not vote for Obama because he is BLACK.

    The question should not be what Obama needs to do. The question should be what these so called Americans need to do to get over their outdated views of who we are as humans. These are supposed to be CHURCH GOERS AND CHRISTIANS. I don't what GOD these people serve.

    The media needs to ask the right questions so we can move the entire country beyond not voting for someone because he/she is black or woman.

    Wolf of CNN needs to do a better JOB! I used to respect him as a reporter. ?????

    May 21, 2008 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  4. RICARDO PHILLIPS OF D.C

    Hard to get vote from inbread jeds. And they know who they are. Just remember those whom will vote for obama from clinton and those who have become new registered democratic voters, and those republicans whom have crossed over added together will make it possible for Obama to defeat Mcain. Numbers do not lie.

    May 21, 2008 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  5. Renee' Va.

    I am not so sure that they are democrats. Democrats don't normally betray their party for some of the reasons I have read. I could not support Sen Clinton because of the way she acted. She reminds me so much of President Bush everything has to be done her way regardless. I see her as a self centered self serving women who know how to use anyone or anything to get what she wants. The primary was ran based on what she wanted or did not want she for some odd reason has been allowed to call all the shots is this race. A true leader cannot blame or find fault with everybody else when they fall short. She made a lot of mistakes during this race but instead of excepting reasponsiblity for her mistakes she just places the blame on Sen Obama, the media, the DNC, and the fact that she is a women. I don't get it she makes accusations to her supporters and they take them as fact. I am shocked to see the first female run for the president of the U.S. conduct herself in such a low fashion. We will have a female president one day and I hope that no matter what the situation maybe in the world that when people see her they still see a lady. Women are the most graceful human beings in the world. I didn't see any grace coming from Sen Clinton. What I saw coming from her was mean, untruthful, and someone all about self. I do hope that Sen Obama actually selects a woman for his VP just as long as it is not Sen. Clinton.

    May 21, 2008 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
  6. stayingathomewoman

    im staying home–so there!!!!

    May 21, 2008 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  7. Concerned Canadian

    If the DNC " SELECT " Obama instead of " ELECT " a legitimate nominee for Presidential candidate...gauranteed there will be a split on the party that nobody will be able to heal in time for the general election.

    I'm not bragging, but I've been right more often than the political pundits, the so called experts. This will turn into a bad scene.

    Best advice, count every vote in Florida and Michigan now ! or face losing the White House....again !

    May 21, 2008 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  8. Less, Austin Tx

    Once the nomination is over and done with. I think people who voted for Hillary will come to their senses and support Obama?

    And if they ask themselves, why should we; it's because they love their families, right?

    I think people will set aside their feelings of retaliation by not voting for Obama, and take a decisive look at the direction this country is headed for that will impact their children's adult lives and so on.

    As for John McCain, well he goes on T.V. and cracks jokes to reach the Amercian people. Wait a minute, is this a time to joke?

    May 21, 2008 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  9. Anonymous....

    "Nearly half of Democratic voters in Kentucky polled Tuesday said they would either vote for Republican Sen. John McCain or not vote at all in November if Obama is the Democratic nominee. Among 1,278 people polled, 33 percent said they would pick McCain over Obama, and 16 percent said they would not vote at all."

    AMEN....its about the people, not the numbers...Wake up America

    May 21, 2008 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  10. Democrat in Des Moines

    He also has a problem with younger, educated, white professionals. I'm not saying I won't vote for him but I won't vote for him just because he's a democrat.

    He has to show me some substance.

    May 21, 2008 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  11. Monica

    These voters are not supporting him because she has been telling them for months now that he is incompetent and incapable of being president. The polling in Kentucky verifies that she continues to bash him. She is creating a no confidence vote in the leading candidate of her own party. This is a primary and not the GE, at this point I question the integrity and ethics of someone who will continue this kind of talk convincing their own party members that he does not deserve the nomination, she does. Again I ask, to what point and purpose does she continue? I cannot find an explanation except to bring Obama down and I am hoping that is not her cause.

    May 21, 2008 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  12. Sam

    I'm not surprised by the struggle that remains. America should be leery of placing an inexperienced person in the highest profile position of the world. This country is in such a mess, it's going to take more than words of hope and good speeches to fix it.

    This decision should not be taken lightly. America should be doing their homework and voting based on the accomplishments and experience for those running. People have asked what each brings to the table...please folks do some research. You should know by now what each has accomplished in their lives and careers and you should know where they stand on the issues. If you don't, I would suggest finding out before November.

    May 21, 2008 10:40 am at 10:40 am |
  13. Dee Okla.

    All I can say is let the suppers over ride the people's vote if they want to, but be ready for mcbush term because Clinton will struggle with the black voters and all the new first time voters that will feel "why vote it doesn't matter goverment will do what anyway".

    May 21, 2008 10:40 am at 10:40 am |
  14. KIKI

    Anybody in a presidential election will have some weakness with some democratic or Republican voters in some areas of the country. That's why you campaign to get your message out. Some will change their mind and some will not. Did Obama has to win all states to be president? What are you talking about anyway. The rest is bla bla bla

    May 21, 2008 10:40 am at 10:40 am |
  15. H-ROD

    These people who want to vote for Mccain must not have had enough of George Bush. So let them stay home or vote for Mccain you only hurt yourselfs ,but before you do check out , THE BRAVES ONE THE REAL MCCAIN.COM AND SEE WHAT YOU GET. THE SAME OLD REPUBLICAN LIES , WAR ,AND DEBT. GO ON CUT OFF YOUR NOSE TO SPITE YOUR FACE (YES OBAMA CAN ) !!!!!!!!

    May 21, 2008 10:41 am at 10:41 am |
  16. If not Hillary....then McCain

    Yes he does. He has not been an agent of CHANGE at all! He has used all the swiftboating tactics and racist and sexist innuendo, and has somehow managed to convince people that it is Hillary who is doing this. He is the little brother who always breaks things and blames it on his older sibling. I am one democrat who will never be swayed to vote for Obama....and I do not consider myself racist! There are many Hillary supporters who see through the smoke and mirrors and the bias of the MSM and WILL NOT BE MANIPULATED into voting for Obama just because he is a Democrat.

    Our first priority is country, and it is my opinion that his foreign policy is flawed and weak. I do not believe we should sit down, without preconditions, with leaders of countries who want to decimate us and our allies.

    I also believe we need mandated Universal Healthcare in order to move forward with the medical needs of our citizens. Most all of us need to carry car insurance in order to operate a vehicle on city, state and federal roads. Healthcare is no different!

    We Americans are a very independent sort and do not like to be told by anyone, including DNC and MSM who we should vote for.

    As far as voting for McCain over Obama, there is a democratic majority in congress, part of our checks and balances. Additionally, all of you who are saying we would be giving up women's rights by voting for McCain are the true fearmongers. I have more faith in our country and it's history. There is no way our country would tolerate a reversal of Roe V Wade. Stop using that as a deterrent, it is fearmongering in the worst way!

    May 21, 2008 10:41 am at 10:41 am |
  17. Sick&Tired

    To everyone who says blacks are racists for voting overwhelmingly for Obama more so because he is black than they are voting for Hilary. Then say whites who voted for Clinton soly because she is white are not racists are flawed in their thinking and here why.

    1.- Blacks, have always voted for a whites since they were allowed to vote in every election. Therefore, if they were racists, they would have stayed home and not vote at all because the majority of the time to the two people running for office are–for the majority of the time–whites.

    2.- Blacks have never voted for one white person over the other based on race–EVER. therefore, race was never an issue in the black community. However, whites have for a good part of our history based their vote for the white guy on how close he is with blacks... some white men have even run their entire campaign on race.

    3.- As far back as November of 2007 Obama was not considered a contender against Hillary in the black community, until he proved that he can win the white vote. If anything the black community was waiting for an approval from whites before their vote for the black guy; how does that make them racists?

    4.- On the flip side of the coin we have whites who have never had the chance to vote for a black this late in an election period, basing their vote only on race and nothing else. That my friends, is the difference.

    Don't buy this notion that blacks are not going to vote for any of the democrates, on the contrary if there is a voting block that democrats can rely on in any election. It's the black vote, and that has nothing to do with race.

    May 21, 2008 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  18. Annie

    I will VOTE for Experience! Regarless of race, gender,
    republican or democrate. I'm not totally opposed of an Independent if they're the best person for the job.
    Who would you hire if this was a job interview for the
    Highest Office of the United States of America?
    dah... Hillary or McCain

    Obama will never get my vote, because being President of the US in these troubled times is NOT an internship! Remember the last time we put a niave inexperienced man in this great office and he ( !Bush) couldn't pronounce names for Heads of States, couldn't spell simple things like potato and said naive things about what he couldn't do. Everytime he opened his mouth, he stuck his foot in it.

    Obama is too inexperienced and niave in world affairs for anybody's vote. He said there were 57 states in the United States. Even a child knows that! and "50 States" is So imbeded into our thoughts that ever in our most thoughless times, we wouldn't get it wronge. Haven't we learned anything?

    That's why Hillary has the Votes from Older, Wiser Americans.
    They know NOT to take THIS job opportunity lightly.! !
    And who do YOU "trust enough" to pick those upcoming empty
    Supreme Court Justices seats in our highly regarded Court Sysyem?!

    May 21, 2008 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  19. Conservative -CA

    Democrats will caolesce around Obama but it is something that will take time. Until Clinton's decides to back Obama, only then we should see who are the real Democrats.

    May 21, 2008 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  20. Sensible Cape Coral Fl

    If Obama wins the nomination, that may mean that Hillary will remain in the Senate and hopefully will continue the wonderful work of Senator Kennedy. She is the best one to do it. We Democrats have a win-win situation. Let's be grateful and UNITE.

    May 21, 2008 10:44 am at 10:44 am |
  21. Mike from Westchester

    If you look at the exit polling data from Oregon and a number of other largely rural or largely white states, Obama has no problem. What is so different about Kentucky and West Virginia? Hmmmmmm...........

    BTW: AR, KY, and WV are Hillary's only 25+ point victories. Obama has 13 of them and he has 26 double digit wins to her 9. Even in primaries he leads in double digit wins 16 to 9.

    And he is AHEAD in the popular vote, even with Florida and the caucus state totals, he is up by 270,000 votes with only two Obama friendly states to go.

    May 21, 2008 10:45 am at 10:45 am |
  22. John in KY

    Guess we're going to have four more years, or possibly eight years of Republican rule if OBAMA gets the nomination all because of the DNC's stupidity!! and SEXISM!!!!
    GO HILLARY 08!!

    May 21, 2008 10:46 am at 10:46 am |
  23. JH

    I just don't understand people who won't vote for Obama. He and Hillary are almost the same candidate based on issues, they vary very little. And yet people are going to not vote for him or worse vote for the man who only six months ago was distancing himself from Bush and now is the first person to sing his praises. All elections should be about issues not who is prettiest, female, white or black. If you agree with Hillary's issues then vote for Obama. Don't not vote. I'm from KY and it makes me sick to think that people in the Commonwealth are so backwards that they can't figure out its about issues not names...

    May 21, 2008 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
  24. Bitter

    Hillary Clinton's supporters are bitter. Is there any denying it when you look at the poll results recorded in this story? Face it, you are bitter, old, white people! OMG! You ARE John McCain!

    May 21, 2008 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  25. Kevin in Saskatchewan, Canada

    flat out….Obama is having trouble with the people that will never vote for a black man. Call it what you will, but an exit poll taken last night in Kentucky released the troubling fact that 1 in 5 people who voted there say that race played a role in their decision. And of those, 9 in 10 were Hillary supporters. This should be an eye opener to those who like to dance around this issue by saying Obama has trouble courting the "white, blue collar" vote….he isn't getting the white, racist vote. And never will. And anyone suggesting that Obama is unelectable because he can't secure the "white, blue collar vote" is saying that it is that redneck vote that is what gets people in the WHITE house. Welcome to the 21st century West Virginia….welcome to the 21st century Kentucky. If Hillary were serious about uniting the Democratic party, she should say that she doesn't want the votes of the racists. But knowing Hillary, she would say"you know what they say…where the rednecks go, so goes the rest of the nation!"

    May 21, 2008 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
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