January 23, 2010

'White surge to the GOP'

There seems to have been a white surge to the GOP in Massachusetts. In the 2008 election, no less than 79 percent of Massachusetts voters were white, and Obama carried them by 20 points, winning the state 62 to 36. How did Scott Brown turn that 26-point deficit into a six-point victory? Most likely by winning the white vote as massively as did Obama, says Pat Buchanan.
But, if that’s what really happened, what explains the white surge to the GOP? Here are some likely answers:

First, sinking white support for Obama, seen as ineffectual in ending the recession and stopping the loss of jobs.

Second, a growing perception that Obama is biased. When the president blurted that the Cambridge cops and Sgt. James Crowley “acted stupidly” in arresting black Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates—a rush to judgment that proved wrong—his support sank in white America and especially in Massachusetts, where black Gov. Deval Patrick joined in piling on Crowley. Deval is now in trouble, too.

Then there was Obama’s appointment of Puerto Rican American Sonia Sotomayor to the Supreme Court. Her militant support for race and ethnic preferences and her decision to deny Frank Ricci and the white firefighters of New Haven a hearing on their case that they were denied promotions they won in competitive exams because they were white caused 31 GOP senators to vote against her.