The "Have's" And The "Have Not's"
"I Don't Mind A Parasite. I Object To A Cut-Rate One."
Last comment by sebekm 2 years, 4 months ago.

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Memorial Day 2012 apparently holds better news for challenger Mitt Romney than it does for President Obama - at least as far as the upcoming November election goes. reports that:

"As the presidential candidates honor Memorial Day, a new Gallup Poll gives Mitt Romney a big election edge over President Obama among veterans.

Romney leads Obama 58%-34% among veterans, who make up about 13% of the electorate, Gallup reports.

Among non-veterans, Obama leads Romney by four points.

"Obama and Romney are tied overall at 46% apiece among all registered voters in this sample," Gallup reports. "Men give Romney an eight-point edge, while women opt for Obama over Romney by seven points.

"It turns out that the male skew for Romney is driven almost entirely by veterans," says Gallup."


"Gallup's bottom line on the political race for veterans' votes:

Veterans in the U.S. today are mostly male and two-thirds are aged 50 or older. In a population that is currently evenly split in its preferences for Barack Obama or Mitt Romney for president, veterans stand out for their 24-point preference for Romney. About a fourth of men are veterans, and it is their strong skew toward Romney that essentially creates the GOP candidate's leading position among men today. Among non-veteran men, Obama and Romney are essentially tied.

Why veterans are so strong in their preference for the Republican presidential candidate is not clear. Previous Gallup analysis has suggested that two processes may be at work. Men who serve in the military may become socialized into a more conservative orientation to politics as a result of their service. Additionally, men who in the last decades have chosen to enlist in the military may have a more Republican orientation to begin with.

Veterans' strong preference for Romney in this election occurs even though Romney himself is not a military veteran -- though Obama shares this non-veteran status. This will be the first election since World War II in which neither major-party candidate is a veteran.

Barring unforeseen developments such as the re-institution of the military draft, the proportion of the male population in this country that will have served in the armed forces will decrease in the years ahead as the older population dominated by veterans dies off. These data suggest that Democrats could get an overall boost from this demographic phenomenon as these apparently reliable Republican voters become a smaller and smaller proportion of the population."


As for it not being "clear" as to why veterans are so strong in their preference for the Republican presidential candidate - it may not be clear to Gallup, but I'm sure it is clear to veterans. Here's my take:

Since 1960, we have had five Republican presidents and five Democrats. The Democrats were John Kennedy, Lyndon Johnson, Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton, and Barack Obama. Prominent memories that veterans have of the five Democrat presidents include the Bay of Pigs fiasco, the Vietnam War, the Iran hostage rescue debacle, a "loathing" of the mliitary, and the repeal of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell." Also - when Democrats were in the White House between 1976 and 2000 - the military seemed to be in a perpetual state of "downsizing." What this means for active duty personnel is that your resources are constantly shrinking and you are forever being asked to "do more with less." During those years, if you served for any significant length of time when a Democrat was president, you quickly came to realize that it was the philosophy of the incumbent administration that was the source of your woes. The situation was invariably reversed and resources increased and upgraded when a Republican was elected president.

So as with everything else, the veteran's preference for Republican presidential candidates - IMHO - is simply a matter of economics. Veterans are like elephants - they NEVER forget. They remember back to "the good old days" when they were on active duty. When a Republican was president, you were usually a "have"; with a Democrat, you were usually a "have not." Further - with the exception of President Obama, who has alienated veterans on other issues - Democrat presidents tended to demonstrate a technical incompetence and a general insensitivity to those things that military personnel consider really important which far exceeded that of their Republican counterparts.

So when it comes to being a "have" or a "have not," who really prefers the latter? Additionally, veterans typically continue to care about the morale and combat-ready status of the military long after they have left active duty. Given these factors and conditions, it should be no surprise that a wide majority of veterans prefer a Republican in the White House.

It's just economics.

For the entire Gallup survey and their analysis, see:

Latest Activity: May 28, 2012 at 11:20 AM

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sebekm commented on Monday, May 28, 2012 at 13:53 PM

....and here's a pretty good analysis of the current overall state of the presidential campaign:

sebekm commented on Monday, May 28, 2012 at 17:53 PM

....and this one's just as good:

sebekm commented on Monday, May 28, 2012 at 18:02 PM

(...but you can't get there withoug REGISTRATION on the site. Here's the operative parts:

"...Mr Romney has overcome months of criticism that he was a lightweight leader of a weak field and emerged from the Republican ruck as a potent adversary for the president.

“The notion that he was a weak frontrunner has not been substantiated,” says Vin Weber, a former congressman and a Romney campaign adviser. “People have misdiagnosed the race a lot over the past year.”

If political scientists had wanted to construct an identikit picture of a Republican candidate saddled with negatives, then they may have come up with someone resembling Mr Romney.

He is a north-eastern moderate, and a Mormon, at a time when Republicans are more conservative, Christian and southern than ever. Worse, the core of his signature health reform in Massachusetts mirrors the very shake-up Mr Obama is so reviled by conservatives for.

After a banking crisis that triggered the worst economic downturn in the west since the great depression, Mr Romney also has a background in a corner of finance, private equity, known for high-risk leveraging and ruthlessness.

The notion that Americans might vote in a financier as their next president might have seemed preposterous two years ago as the banking crisis spread to the real economy.

But despite multiple obstacles, Mr Romney has so far surmounted every challenge thrown his way and positioned himself competitively ahead of the launch of the general election campaign.

Mr Obama and Mr Romney are virtually tied in national polls, though the president fares slightly better in voter surveys in crucial battleground states, such as Ohio.

In the past week, the Obama campaign’s attacks on Mr Romney’s record at Bain Capital, far from hurting the candidate, have split Democrats, with a number of prominent party figures supporting the private equity industry.

Mr Romney has benefited from the most important factor unifying Republicans of all stripes – their deep and at times fanatical antipathy to Mr Obama.

“Some presidents manage to knock the edge off the opposition’s opposition, but not this one. Mr Obama is not a neutral figure,” says William Galston, of the Brookings Institution, who worked in Bill Clinton’s White House.

Mr Romney and his campaign have displayed the kind of efficiency and ruthlessness necessary to win presidential elections and combat Mr Obama’s own well-resourced and hardened machine.

Newt Gingrich, the former speaker of the House of Representatives who was eventually swept aside by Mr Romney in the primaries, described his rival as someone “strong enough to look you in the eye and run over you”."

JimmyMack commented on Tuesday, May 29, 2012 at 12:33 PM

With all due respect Sebe: yada yada yada...You're talking to yourself now if you notice. And my friend, you are starting to lend your voice while at the same time providing a local venue for Republican talking points and Republican rhetoric on this here blog site.

What happened to The Independent Sebe?

sebekm commented on Tuesday, May 29, 2012 at 12:36 PM

Still here - but looking to illustrate how the election conditions have changed. It IS a race now.

JimmyMack commented on Tuesday, May 29, 2012 at 12:48 PM is going to be close. The country is very divided. Just do not want any recounts in any swing states.

sebekm commented on Tuesday, May 29, 2012 at 15:26 PM

The latest I see is that the "dream ticket" for the Repubs would be Romney-Rubio. I don't know - Rubio seems awfully young to me, but he's no less experienced that President Obama himself was when he became President, so I guess they can argue that point. The lefties will undoubtedly beat him up for being a Tea Party darling - as well as his characterization of himself as being a "son of exiles." But that might not make any REAL difference to the latino/Hispanic voters they would expect to peel away from Obama with Rubio on the ticket.

This one is getting to be far more interesting than I had imagined a year ago.

JimmyMack commented on Tuesday, May 29, 2012 at 19:03 PM

I dunno, Sebe. The Donald my just well be on the ticket! You think Romney's got the cahonies to denounce this obnoxious birther?

I doutbt it.

sebekm commented on Wednesday, May 30, 2012 at 12:19 PM

I think that Romney needs to denounce The Donald as much as he needs to denounce Rush Limburger. Romney isn't responsible for every clown who opposes Obama - just as President Obama isn't responsible for everything Jeremiah Wright says about America.

But Romney did obliquely address the issue:

As for the "birthers," I thought they were superseded by the "transcripters." But they're not unique - the President has various "hit teams" working to dig up dirt on Romney:

So what else is new?

sebekm commented on Wednesday, May 30, 2012 at 14:52 PM

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