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18 June 2010

Democratic Pollster: 48% Less Likely To Support Obama-Backed Candidate

Last month, I raised a little hay when I strongly suggested that Georgia Democrats keep their distance from President Obama this election year. My post, "Note To Georgia Dems: Tell Obama To Stay Out Of This State", generated some discussion on this and other blogs.

Former state Democratic Party communications director Martin Matheny wrote the following on the site, Beyond The Trestle:

An Obama endorsement contains more negatives than positives, and in a year where Georgia Democrats are poised to make big gains after eight years in the wilderness, the Party doesn't need the President mucking it up by showing his face around here.


"To make the presumption that the President has reverse Midas touch for candidates does a disservice to the candidates themselves, both the ones he supports and the ones he doesn't. It also, more importantly, does a disservice to the voters who actually, unlike the fellow in the White House, decide these things."

Seldom do I presume or assume anything. Many of my opinions are based in fact and numbers.

In the NBC political drama, "The West Wing", President Jed Bartlet once said to his secretary, Mrs. Landingham, "Give me numbers." Mrs. Landingham replied to Bartlet, "I don't know numbers. You give 'em to me."

Here are some new numbers from the Democratic polling firm Public Policy Polling:

Would you be more or less likely to vote for a candidate who was endorsed by President Obama, or would it not make a difference?

More likely - 33%
Less likely - 48%
Makes no difference - 17%
Not sure - 1%

Tom Jensen, director of Public Policy Polling, wrote on the firm's blog Thursday that, "Democrats are going to have to think really carefully about how they deploy Barack Obama for campaigning this fall."

"Polls we've conducted nationally and in several different states over the last few weeks have found that a candidate being endorsed by Obama is much more likely to elicit a negative response from Republican voters than a positive one from Democrats," explained Jensen [Jensen, Tom (2010-6-17). The Obama Effect. Public Policy Polling (blog). Retrieved on 2010-6-18.].

In other words, having President Obama endorse a candidate this year is a potentially risky move.

An Obama endorsement contains more negatives than positives, and in a year where Georgia Democrats are poised to make big gains after eight years in the wilderness, the Party doesn't need the President mucking it up by showing his face around here.