Some Perspective on Potential Democratic Defectors

I admit it. If asked by a pollster if I would vote for Clinton if she were to become the Democratic nominee, I would probably say that I would not.

I think the Clintons are a toxin in the Democratic party and probably just not good for the entire country. I want them out of presidential politics for good, though I wouldn’t be opposed to Hillary serving as Senate Majority Leader. Apparently about 19% percent of Obama backers feel the same way I do,  while 28% of Clinton backers say they will not back Obama if he is the nominee.

But the truth is, when November comes and if Hillary is the Democratic nominee, I’ll probably go ahead and hold my nose to vote for her. By that time, against McCain, she’ll probably not look as bad as she does now.

Gallup has the numbers on the polling and a good perspective:

These results suggest that it may be normal for some voters to claim early on in the process — perhaps out of frustration — that they will desert their party if certain things do not happen to their liking. And it may be equally likely that they fall back into line by the time of the general election. It is worth noting that in Gallup’s historical final pre-election polls from 1992 to 2004, 10% or less of Republicans and Democrats typically vote for the other party’s presidential candidate.

Still, when almost 3 out of 10 Clinton supporters say they would vote for McCain over Obama, it suggests that divisions are running deep within the Democratic Party. If the fight for the party’s nomination were to continue until the Denver convention in late August, the Democratic Party could suffer some damage as it tries to regroup for the November general election.

In short, the party will get past this one, unless, perhaps, the acrimony around this campaign stays with us through the summer.


2 responses to “Some Perspective on Potential Democratic Defectors

  1. This is something I would really have to grapple with. It’s hard for me to contemplate voting for Hillary, and my knee-jerk reaction is that I’d vote for McCain and hope that he limits himself to one term as he’s represented.

    I also think the country needs to be rid of the Clintons. She’s Karl Rove and George Bush all rolled into one, and he, while a world class intellectual, is a deeply troubled person prone to self-destructive behavior. It would be difficult to put them back in the White House.

    But then I think of the damage McCain could do with four years of judicial nominations. Particularly with what could be two Supreme Court nominations – I believe Justice Stevens is 86 and Justice Ginsberg has had a few health scares.

    That’s probably enough for me to bite down hard and pull the lever for Hillary. And then I’d find the first bar I could and tell them to make me a very big martini.

  2. I’m with you on that. I think McCain and Hillary would be the same on foreign policy, essentially.

    But the judicial appointments and SC appointments give me pause when thinking of voting McCain.

    Hillary would most certainly appoint better judges (from my perspective) than would McCain.

    But if she gets the nomination by ignoring the stated preferences of the voters, well, my relationship with the Democratic party is over.

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