The good news is that Americans are beginning to the see the light when it comes to Republicans, but the bad news is that they may not vote in their own best interests.
A recently released Washington Post poll indicates that 47% of Americans believe that Republicans favor the “haves,” while only 7% believe that Republican favor the “have-notes.” President Obama, on the other hand, is viewed by 15% of those polled as favoring the “haves,” while 29% see him as favoring the “have-nots.”
The message that should have been obvious for decades is finally beginning to be received. Whether that’s a reflection gross Republican arrogance in believing that enough Americans will support them no matter what their message is (especially if it’s mixed in with a little good, old fashioned voter suppression) or whether Democrats have finally begun to stand up for the American people in a more aggressive fashion might be worthy of discussion.
At this point, though, there is an important question: Will Americans, at least white Americans, actually vote for what’s best for them now that they know the truth?
African Americans will, as they historically have done. According to statistics shown on The Last Word with Lawrence O’Donnell on Thursday, 95% of the African American vote went to Obama in 2008, 88% went to John Kerry in 2004, and 90% went to Al Gore in 2000.
This isn’t because African Americans are liberal across the board. In fact, according to O’Donnell’s guest Dorian Warren, assistant professor of political science and public affairs at Columbia University, African Americans tend to be socially conservative–more in line with Republicans than Democrats–but economics trump culture.
In other words, African Americans tend to be more concerned about their own welfare than they are about ancillary societal issues that are not as likely to directly affect them.
Will white voters, especially Christian, do the same? Will they put the economic interest of themselves ahead of their belief that gays should not be allowed to marry (or serve openly in the military) even though, if they’re not gay (or serving in the military), the topics are of no direct concern?
Will white voters put the economic interests of their children and grandchildren ahead of their religions beliefs about abortion, even though abortion is clearly an issue that does not have to directly affect them. I don’t see any liberal candidates forcing abortions on unwilling pregnant women.
Will white voters put the economic interests of the entire nation ahead of their belief that we should protect U.S. borders from illegal aliens even though it doesn’t directly affect their lives, especially if the overall economic state of the country is improving?
I guess we’ll see, but I’m not going to hold my breath.