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18 July 2010

Poll Suggests Obama May Be Toxic For Georgia Democrats

Pictured at right is a page from the Democratic Party of Georgia's website touting the accomplishments of the Obama Administration.

Accomplishments notwithstanding though, a new poll from the Georgia Newspaper Partnership and Mason-Dixon says that most in the Peach State disapprove of President Obama's job performance [Yount, Emily (2010-7-17). 2010 Georgia Newspaper Partnership Poll Results. Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Retrieved on 2010-7-18.].

Even in the metro Atlanta area, Obama's job approval rating sits at 34.5 percent. This is notable because metro Atlanta provided then-candidate Obama with 1,176,170 votes, or 63.7% of his statewide total, in the 2008 presidential election [SOURCE: Georgia Secretary of State].

The President's low job approval numbers must be scary to look at for Georgia Democrats. These numbers suggest there won't be any presidential coattails for the party to ride in on this fall. Much more concerning is the possibility of Obama dragging down the Georgia Democratic ticket due to Republicans successfully linking state Democrats with the national Democratic Party.

For years, Democrats in Georgia won elections by distancing themselves from national Democratic losers such as George McGovern and Walter Mondale. The not-so-subtle message to Georgia voters was simply, "We're Democrats. But we're not those kind of Democrats. We're Georgia Democrats, and we put Georgia's conservative values ahead of the national Democratic Party's liberal schemes."

The message emanating from Georgia's Democratic Party these days, as evidenced by their website, appears to be, "We love Barack Obama and we're associating ourselves with national Democratic leaders."

That message is sure to have Georgia Republicans salivating, because the Democrats are doing half their job for them.

Much like their counterparts at the national level, the Georgia GOP is expected to make the 2010 election a statewide referendum on Barack Obama and national Democratic leadership. The state Republican Party currently sits on a warchest of more than $2.5 million ready to drive that message home [SOURCE: State Ethics Commission]. And again, half their work is done for them.

Barack Obama is toxic in this state.

The polls appear to back that statement up, and Georgia Democrats would be best suited to focus on a platform that puts Georgia first.

In the upcoming general election campaign, Georgia Democrats should steer clear of President Obama, assert the independence of the state Democratic Party and not hesitate to criticize national Democratic leadership when necessary.