Polls indicate that more than 20% of Hillary Clinton’s supporters will vote for John McCain if Barack Obama is the nominee. If that number is just 5% in November it will devastate an Obama candidacy.
There are Democrats who recognize (a) that a disenchanted Democratic vote for McCain is twice as destructive as simply a non-vote and (b) that comments like “God damn America,” ”for the first time in my adult life I’m proud of my country,” and “ I will slow our development of future combat systems” will not go away. Some of those disenchanted Democrats, inspired by this post by an Obama supporter-turned-loather have created a movement to blunt Obama’s rise:
The website offers this message:
We will not vote for Barack Obama for a host of reasons, the most important one being his unimpressive legislative record. That there is persuasive and mounting evidence that Senator Obama is deeply dishonest and holds racially divisive beliefs are important facts for us as well.
We will not vote for John McCain for very different reasons having nothing to do with his qualifications, which are strong and evident. We simply don’t want a pro-war President who is indifferent about the ailing American economy. A vote for McCain is likely to be a vote for an extension of W’s tragically detrimental policies.
As a practical matter, third parties and especially write-in campaigns are almost always losers. But they are powerful indicators of disenchantment. This divide in the Democratic Party is not going away. Furthermore, the superdelegate push for a decision before the convention might actually worsen Democratic chances if between the primaries and August more unflattering revelations of Obama’s past emerge. Keep in mind that just a month ago Barack Obama was cruising along with eleven straight victories, his Ivy League-educated wife hadn’t yet looked down with disdain at her country, and disgust with Jeremiah Wright’s rants was limited to a few geeks in the blogosphere. A lot can change very quickly. If buyer’s remorse kicks in, expect WriteHillaryIn.com and movements like it to gain traction.