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. Chuck, Democrats United We Stand

    Wow, and your polls are accurate. Look where you polled. I have traveled that area, and to be honest your poll does not speak for the MAJORITY of America. Nor does it agree with other polls that exist.

    May 21, 2008 09:31 am at 9:31 am |
  2. Sad

    Let 's Have A Reality Check. White American in the states that Hilliary are winning do not want to Vote for A Black Man. Hilliary did not help the cause by her statement on White Voters recently. Also Obama supporters for most part would vote for Hillary if she the nominee but her supporters will not for for Obama. All of these years in voting for President Black American had no choice but to vote for a White President but now the ball is changing and Whites are not as generous!! It come down to race!!!

    May 21, 2008 09:31 am at 9:31 am |
  3. Pat M

    Voters who say they will vote for McCain if HIllary is not the nominee need to UNDERSTAND if they vote for McCain they are playing into the Republicans Hand and PUTTING McBUSH into the White House! Please don't let your prejudices force Americans and the World to have to live through another FOUR YEARS OF the SAME!

    Surely you don't want another Republican Administration like the last!
    Think about the consequences your your vote for McCain or you non-vote will have on your Nation. Pleaseeee. Do not let the Republican Machine claim Victory as it will be defeat for all ! This is exactly what the Repugnicans are counting on and hoping the Hillary supporters will do!

    May 21, 2008 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  4. ok

    Clinton also has struggle with even more democrats. She is struggling with blacks, blue-collar working blacks (you can call it red or black or yellow-collar if you like), the young excited people, the educated and so on. Obama did not campaign in West Virginia and Kentucky. If he campaigned, it would be a different story. Also, once Obama is the nominee, all domecrats are getting behind him. Stop this divide and rule tactics. 75,000 people during his campaing stop in Oregon were all whites, Iowa who first handed Obama his first win is all white. Obama is doing well with white votes and he will continue to do well once he is the nominee. That will be the CLEAR CHOICE than to get McCain into the White House. McCain is a poor choice for America. Mark my words.

    May 21, 2008 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  5. wendy

    Look at the picture with this story and tell me the media hasn't done their fair share of glorifying Obama.

    May 21, 2008 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  6. Sue P / PA

    If those democrats are TRUE democrats..they will vote for Obama in November. There is no way any true democrat wants 4 more years of Bush.....McCain.

    May 21, 2008 09:33 am at 9:33 am |
  7. Bushwhacked in Eugene, OR

    It's time to end the in-fighting, remember why we are all democrats, and bring this party together.

    The alternative? continuation of the Iraq war, wars with Iran and whoever else gets in the way, more casualties, more tax dollars going to fund war instead of into America. Forget women's rights. Forget having anything but a conservative supreme court.

    And for all of you 'blue collar, low-income' Hillary fans who'd rather vote for McCain, do you really think John McCain is going to care one way or another about your plight? He'll forget you exist about as fast as he gets the majority vote. You simply don't fall onto his radar screen unless he needs your vote.

    Think about it. If Hillary were the candidate, I might have to hold my nose as I filled out my ballot, but I would vote for her or any democrat over John McCain or any republican. Can't you put emotions aside and do the same for YOUR OWN sake? There's an old line saying 'be careful what you ask for because you just might get it'. Do you really want John McCain and a total continuation of Bush policies? I think not.

    May 21, 2008 09:33 am at 9:33 am |
  8. DJ in TX

    the question was finally asked of Howard Wolfson this morning (by a viewer, not the media), that if Hillary should win the nomination, how would she try to reach out to the African American and young voters that are supporting Senator Obama. Howard (to my suprise) actually noted that it is an issue and that Senator Clinton would have her work cut out for her, just as Senator Obama has his work cut out for him with her supporters should he win. It was actually a little refreshing to hear that from Howard.

    May 21, 2008 09:34 am at 9:34 am |
  9. Rod, Houston, TX

    When the Exit polls showed that only 33% of Clinton supports in Kentucky, will vote for McCain over Obama it is clear that it is about race. We are talking about a state where one of there legends, Adolph Rupp, vowed to never put a black on his team even after the lost to Texas Western in 1965, and UK named an Arena after him. It wasn't until 1969 that UK signed its first black basketball player. They recently ran Tubby Smith out of town. They would rather suffer for four more years than take a chance on a black President. You can be loyal to a party, a race, a religion, or a gender to a fault. We all know that most Republicans are Republicans because most blacks are Democrats. They are only willing to switch if it is Hillary. Give me a break.

    May 21, 2008 09:35 am at 9:35 am |
  10. Generation X

    Not as much as Senator Clinton struggling in the nomination. I can sense a big wave of superdelegates today! 70 DELEGATE COUNTDOWN.

    May 21, 2008 09:35 am at 9:35 am |
  11. EAS

    Why no analysis of the white vote in Oregon? The state is only 2% non-white, and it is not populated by the highly educated or those with white incomes. It appears that the media is intent on highlighting division.

    May 21, 2008 09:35 am at 9:35 am |
  12. Amy

    I will be ashamed of our country if Senator Obama does not win in the November election due to the color of his skin. What will this say about us as a nation? If I were Hillary, I would be ashamed that my base was racist, and as a voter I'm ashamed that she has embraced them.

    May 21, 2008 09:35 am at 9:35 am |
  13. Bill

    I'm a 63 year old white male, and I find it hard to believe that most of those votes were based legitmately on her experience and skill.
    I wonder if Clinton privately feels bad about some of the people in West Viriginia and Kentucky voting for her because she is white?
    The media seems like they are scared to recognize the so-called, "Obama problem" for what it really is. However, personally I don't think it's Obama's problem. It's the peoples' problem who can't see past someone's race. Yes, I think our race relations have improved a little, but these results show their is still more work to be done. About 26% of the Democratic voters in Kentucky based their vote on race.

    I'm not saying your a racist if you don't vote for Obama. But any rational and open-minded person can look at these exit poll numbers and see that racism is well and alive.

    May 21, 2008 09:35 am at 9:35 am |
  14. SDB

    I am thoroughly convinced the people of this nation are out of their minds!! Please Hillary...drop the Democrats as they are and run as an Independent!! They don't deserve someone like you supporting them!!

    May 21, 2008 09:35 am at 9:35 am |
  15. EAS

    I meant to write "those with high incomes."

    May 21, 2008 09:36 am at 9:36 am |
  16. NoBama

    The more intelligent voters do not buy into this guy's hype. He is hype without substance and anyone who bothers to dig deep knows that.

    May 21, 2008 09:36 am at 9:36 am |
  17. LB

    It is really sad that in this day and age the United States of America still has such a large number of people who are racist and not willing to look beyond a persons color of their skin. That women will fight for another women to get elected but refuse to vote for a black person to lead this great country. I'm a white middle aged female and it's time for this country to change its old ways and progress to a better place and future. Go Obama!

    May 21, 2008 09:37 am at 9:37 am |
  18. Dee

    Well, we know that race, unfortunately, is still a big issue in this country. Regardless, of how talented and dedicated a person is to our country, it will never matter to certain people. But, it's brought to the surface now, and we can't avoid it.

    It all depends on how you look at life. Some look at the past, while others look to the future. The future is Obama, along with millions and millions of other dedicated and devoted Americans who love this country as much he does.

    Navy Veteran for Obama!

    May 21, 2008 09:38 am at 9:38 am |
  19. Decarla

    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.

    Why do you think this is so?

    There is no good reason. KY and WV people do not know anything the general public does not know...except that they are exquisitely and unadulteratedly RACIST. They have the highest accepted race percentage 21-22 % in the voting in this election. That is 9-11 percent higher than in Pensyvania.

    Do you think this is representative of America and an example to follow?

    This should be called what it is....an anomaly and not worthy of being analyzed.

    May 21, 2008 09:38 am at 9:38 am |
  20. Tony, Miami

    Once Hillary out of the race those polls will change drastically.

    The majority of democrats will shift to Obama's camp because they will have to make a choice between Obama and McBush. With Hillary out of the race McBush will have no other alternative but to do his homework which is not going to be an easy task.

    May 21, 2008 09:39 am at 9:39 am |
  21. Mr. C.

    He does because the WITCH of a woman is still in the race being VERY divisive.

    May 21, 2008 09:39 am at 9:39 am |
  22. Ron L

    80% of this is PURE HYPE. I belive there is a SMALL number of Americans that have a PROBLEM with Obama and frankly they are older whites who just can't believe (or want to believe) we are VERY CLOSE to having our first President that is not a White Man. Just to days ago I saw an older white woman from North Carolina say she would not vote for Obama because SHE STILL THOUGHT HE WAS A MUSLIM!!! So this is a minority 10 to 15% of the electorate that will find any reason not to vote for him.

    All this other stuff is pure HOGWASH, you had a fairly new face on the national scene (OBAMA) take on the wife (HILLARY) of the Last Democratic President who frankly left the country in much better shape than it is now. Supporters of Bill ARE NOT going to switch very easily.

    THE REAL STORY IS ...OBAMA DID NOT GET BLOWN OUT!!!
    It will take a few months for the emotions to calm down. There will be some complaining Hillary was cheated, America is Sexist, etc. etc.

    None of this is true...HIllary lost because she was out smarted by the Obama campaign, people wanted CHANGE, and as the campaign continued Hillary showed herself to be an OLD-SCHOOL MANIPULATING, SLANDERING, POLITICIAN.....

    THIS IS NOT WHAT AMERICA WANTS IN 2008.....SEE YA..
    WOULDN'T WANT TO BE YA

    May 21, 2008 09:40 am at 9:40 am |
  23. knows better

    No Obama, Yea McCain

    May 21, 2008 09:40 am at 9:40 am |
  24. Rebecca, Oregon

    . . . Is there further proof needed that bigots like to hide behind their
    religion ?

    May 21, 2008 09:41 am at 9:41 am |
  25. Orlando

    It is a fact that all the candidates left in this race have a lot of work to do. They have a mess to fix from a brainless scarecrow. You've seen him dance.

    May 21, 2008 09:41 am at 9:41 am |
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