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Archive for Thursday, June 5, 2008

Can he win Kansas?

Democratic presidential hopeful Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., waves during a campaign stop Saturday in Old San Juan, Puerto Rico. Obama visited Puerto Rico ahead of the June 1 primary.

Democratic presidential hopeful Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., waves during a campaign stop Saturday in Old San Juan, Puerto Rico. Obama visited Puerto Rico ahead of the June 1 primary.

June 5, 2008

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On the Street: Can Obama Win in Kansas?

Angelica Murray, Kansas City, Mo.

On the street

Do you think Obama can win Kansas in the general election?

No. Kansas is going to be Republican, obviously. I think Lawrence is the only liberal town in Kansas.

More responses

Reader poll
Can Barack Obama win the state of Kansas in the November general election?

or See the results without voting

On Feb. 5, thousands of Kansans braved a wet snow and long lines to pack Democratic Party caucus sites and deliver an overwhelming victory to Barack Obama.

Four days later, Kansas Republicans held their caucuses.

Even though Republican registered voters far outnumber Democrats in Kansas, the turnout was approximately half of the Democratic caucus. And the GOP winner by a more than 2-to-1 margin in Kansas was Mike Huckabee, despite the fact that John McCain was on his way to securing the nomination.

So could Obama move red state Kansas into the blue Democratic column in the November general election?

If Obama won Kansas, it would be another historic note to his candidacy and probably would signal a Democratic tidal wave.

"When Kansas goes Democratic in a presidential election is when Hell will go Methodist," quipped Wichita State University political science professor Mel Kahn.

The last time a Democratic presidential candidate won Kansas was in 1964 when President Johnson defeated Republican Barry Goldwater in a national landslide. Before that, it was when Kansans preferred Franklin Delano Roosevelt in 1936 over then-Kansas Gov. Alf Landon.

President Bush eked out two national victories in 2000 and 2004, but in Kansas he had a cakewalk, defeating Democrat Al Gore in 2000 by 58 percent to 37 percent, and increasing that margin in 2004 against John Kerry, 62 percent to 36 percent.

Not surprisingly, political party officials in Kansas disagree on whether Obama or McCain will win the state.

Jenny Davidson, a spokeswoman for the Kansas Democratic Party, said Obama has a chance to win because his run has ignited voters in Kansas.

"He has activated people looking for change," Davidson said.

Republicans, she said, have chosen a "Bush clone" in McCain.

And, she said, McCain cost Kansas 4,000 jobs. She was referring to the Air Force's recent decision to award a $35 billion aerial-tanker contract to a partnership with ties to France's Airbus, rejecting a bid by rival Boeing, which had planned final assembly and testing of planes in Wichita. McCain's critics say he helped pave the way for Airbus in 2003 when Congress approved his amendment allowing the Pentagon to buy military equipment from foreign companies.

But Kris Kobach, chairman of the Kansas Republican Party, said Democrats were "suffering buyer's remorse" in selecting Obama.

"The concerns by these Democrats regarding Obama's naivete, fundamental lack of judgment and failure to lead on issues that matter most to Americans will not fade," he said.

Other factors, however, in Obama's favor are his family and political connections to Kansas. His mother was born in Kansas. And politically, Obama has received strong support from Gov. Kathleen Sebelius, a Democrat, who has been mentioned as a possible running mate.

Wichita State's Kahn said these factors will probably result in Obama getting more votes in Kansas than either Kerry or Gore received, but that he will still not be able to win the state. A SurveyUSA tracking poll released last week backs up Kahn, saying that McCain has a 10-point edge in Kansas. With Sebelius as the vice presidential candidate, he still wouldn't win, according to the poll.

"He has a chance (to win), but it's an outside chance," Kahn said.

Dan Watkins, a Lawrence attorney and senior adviser to Obama's Kansas campaign, said McCain "will be difficult to beat" in Kansas but the Obama camp will make him earn it.

"He expands the playing field," Watkins said of Obama. "I believe Obama will continue the 50-state strategy, whether a state is targeted or not." But, he conceded, "This is not a battleground state."

Comments

Jeff Barclay 6 years, 6 months ago

Republican or Democrat, how could Obama be their choice? His early speeches, the one he gave in Topeka a couple of years ago, his "former" church's views, etc. The average voter does not share his views on economics, America's place on the world scene, or on race. Certainly Obama has no intention of saving jobs in Kansas' military sector either. McCain is not popular with ultra-conservatives. McCain a slam dunk by default.

stuckinthemiddle 6 years, 6 months ago

it would really be something if he did, eh?

Jim Phillips 6 years, 6 months ago

Missouri will give a Republican the nod first.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 6 years, 6 months ago

It was a shallow question with a very shallow premise, drake, in a debate format designed to elicit little more than gotchas and soundbites.

TtownKUlivin 6 years, 6 months ago

Obama will win Kansas..says a republican.

lounger 6 years, 6 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

drake 6 years, 6 months ago

Phillbert,From your link:"In general, there is significant consensus that broad-based reductions in taxes on capital have the potential to boost economic growth over the long run. Reductions in capital taxation increase the return on investment and therefore the formation of capital. The resulting increase in the capital stock yields greater output and higher incomes throughout much of the economy."The report also states that higher capital gains rates results in lower receipts due to the holding of assets.

Confrontation 6 years, 6 months ago

I'm not saying that all of you are racist, but I'm willing to bet that race is playing a BIG role in many decisions. Many Repubs haven't voted for years, but a black man is likely going to get them to the polls. I grew up in rural KS, and I know many people are dusting off their hoods, er... voting pencils.

calnvy 6 years, 6 months ago

Can he win Kansas?.... Better question... WHO CARES!! Not like it really counts! He WILL win where it does.

Boston_Corbett 6 years, 6 months ago

Godot: You are suggesting that dems control agriculture policy? Give me a break.

bondmen 6 years, 6 months ago

Barack Hussein Obama could win Kansas if he were conservative and embraced traditional values. But he was just selected by the internationalists, homosexuals and economic Marxists in the Democrat Party. They don't represent the vast majority of Americans with which Kansans identify.Obama doesn't represent CHANGE; he's a trip further down the leftist road we've been on toward collectivism and more federal government control.

stuckinthemiddle 6 years, 6 months ago

BigDogthat would certainly leave a lot of people wondering what the heck he's proud of at this point in American history, eh?

BigDog 6 years, 6 months ago

If McCain is a third Bush term ..... would Barack Obama be a second Jimmy Carter term? A tax increasing disaster for the American economy.Obama will not get treated with kid gloves now and once people see there is no substance behind his words .... not a chance of carrying Kansas.

drake 6 years, 6 months ago

So Bozo, Your saying that his policy is not to raise taxes?

Godot 6 years, 6 months ago

Obama has a lot of experience as a wannabe revolutionary; now it turns out the community activism of which he is so proud did not solve the problem he hoped to address, namely, poor maintenance of subsidized housing. In fact, his own friend and benefactor, Tony Rezko, is a slumlord of the worst kind. Obama has no experience as a leader of anything bigger than a political campaign geared up for his own success as a politician.

stuckinthemiddle 6 years, 6 months ago

people would do well to believe and remember that McCain said "bomb bomb bomb Iran" in response to a serious question about how to deal with Iran...no need to say it loud or long as long as people hear it the first time and know that it is the truth...and definitely... Obama's campaign should have an entire series of "daisy/mushroom cloud" like commercials that play on McCain's militaristic ideology and approach to world affairs...

BigDog 6 years, 6 months ago

McCain is a closet liberal, so no matter who wins, a liberal will bee in the White House.McCain is simply telling the republican base what they want to hear. Look at his record. McCain is a liberal.-------------------------------------------------------------I will admit that there are areas which I believe McCain is not as conservative as many (even I) would like ..... but he is not close to a liberal .... at least what most would consider liberal.He disagrees with Obama and liberals in many areas:He has never asked for an earmark in the budget and has railed against wasteful spending projects and earmarks ... would like for there to be a line item veto capability for President to remove pork projects from the budget.He is pro-lifeHe has supported the 2nd amendment consistentlyNow supports tax cutsDoesn't want health care system run by federal government

BigDog 6 years, 6 months ago

So now everyone who won't vote for Obama is considered racist by some .... were they racist in Pennsylvania for not voting Lynn Swann governor .... or Maryland when Michael Steele didn't win the US Senate race.No in those cases .... they were Republican worse yet conservative Republicans so you know it doesn't count. In some peoples mind one can only be racist if one doesn't vote for the black candidate in which that candidate is also a Democrat.

Flap Doodle 6 years, 6 months ago

Is there a Democratic bagman equal to Rezko in Kansas?

Confrontation 6 years, 6 months ago

It'll be tough for Obama to win here, especially when all the closet KKK members start bringing out their hoods, er... I mean getting out the vote.

Godot 6 years, 6 months ago

The Dems are in control of Congress, period. Bush vetoed the ag bill, Congress overrode the veto.

endtimes 6 years, 6 months ago

Obama is of mix-race, yes?So, if elected, he would be the nation's first "mixed-race" president........so why so much emphasis on the whole "african-american" thing?

BigDog 6 years, 6 months ago

AgnostickI base this upon the large spending promises/policies that Obama has campaigned upon and is also supporting in Congress.Health care ..... his program would comes at a taxpayer cost of at least $102 billion per year.Cap and trade environmental policy ..... estimated to cost $6.5 TRILLION over life of bill and cause a $3 Trillion loss in America's gross domestic product"Making Work Pay" Refundable Tax Credit - cost $70 billion per yearK-12 Education ---- cost $30 billion per year with billions more for college programsThese are just a few .... he has proposed over $287 billion per year in new spending .... in a time when America is spending over $400 billion more than it takes in each year and already has a $9 trillion debt. And the little promise to balance the budget and reduce the debt.Oh and if you plan to make it up by eliminating the Bush tax cuts for corporations and the wealthy .... that only generates about $75 billion.

trackstar3016 6 years, 6 months ago

Can he win? Even if I'd like to think so (I'm still undecided) we sometimes forget that this little blue county is surrounded by red. Just because democrats here are getting excited and clapping their hands together dosn't mean the 'big 1' (1st district- western kansas) is going blue. Oh, and I really don't think anyone except kansans care about this right now. Obama is definatly not wasting time worrying about whether Kansas will suddenly change its mind. I mean, people say 'look, we've got a democratic govenor!' But that's because Sebelius is pretty middle of the roiad, and we can all be pretty happy with her. (oh, and Tim Shallenburger was the other choice. BOring.)the only other times when Kansas went blue were with LBJ (he was 'carrying the legacy' of Jack Kennedy, and the country was still in shock and mourning), and FDR in 1936. NO ONE could have beaten FDR in 1936. He was still riding the New Deal wave of prosperity, and people were sick of Republicans (Hoover). So do I think it will happen this year? If history is any indicator, probably not. BUT, if Obama is indeed the bringer of change, hell, I might just vote for him. (btw, though I am a female, and I do think Hillary is a brilliant political mind and I admire her, I think choosing her as VP would be a mistake on Obama's part, and would cost him in November)

Take_a_letter_Maria 6 years, 6 months ago

Guardian (Anonymous) says: Missouri will give a Republican the nod first.-------------------------------------------------------------------------What's so unusual about that?Can he win Kansas? Yes, Nadar could win Kansas also. Neither is likely to happen though.

verity 6 years, 6 months ago

I watched the show on KTWU about third parties last night. The talking heads were all proclaiming that the primaries would be over after Feb. 5 (obviously the show was taped before that).Anybody who thinks they can predict what will happen in the general election isn't paying attention.

Phillbert 6 years, 6 months ago

Drake - Gibson's question was based on a faulty premise - i.e. that lower capital gains rates automatically result in more revenues. If this were true, then a rate of 0.1% would raise astronomical amounts of money, which just isn't the case as there's only a finite amount of capital gains that can be taken in a year regardless of the rate they're taxed at.What happens after rate cuts are passed is that investors timing the sale of investments to get the new rate causes a temporary run-up in revenues, but this soon dissipates, taking revenues down lower than before. The non-partisan Congressional Budget Office did a study on it: http://www.cbo.gov/doc.cfm?index=3856&type=0

blindrabbit 6 years, 6 months ago

The right wingers are getting nervous and well they should. The majority of Kansans have been duped by the effective mudraking and mindbending of the Republican Party political machine. The Party has found out that it can it can hide it's real ambitions by hyping-up the populace by ranting about abortion, evolution, immigration gay and marriage issues, support of a phony war (WMD and Bush I & 2 failures), smoked over tax issues (Voodoo Economics and Busting the National Debt), etc. The cast of characters includes Karl Rove, Bushes, Cheney, Senators Sam and Pat, Steve Abrams, Phill Kline, Fred Phelps, the State Legislature and anybody in Johnson County. In his book "What's the Matter With Kansas" Thomas Frank discusses this in great detail. The real premise of the book is that Kansans "vote Rich and Live Poor"; this tactic is well coreographed and planned by "The Party". That many of the issues on the Republican platform are designed to benefit wealthy individuals, the lobbyist business community while feeding on the hot button issues (previously mentioned) of the middle class, right-wing populace is well designed.A real change is needed to fend off the "Dorothy" wonderland image of the State. I had hoped that McCain had the spine to lead the Party to a return to it's former self, but it is apparent that the party right wing mantra is too much for him to overcome.

Marcus DeMond 6 years, 6 months ago

If Kansans liked the last 8 years with Bush, they will probably want four more with McCain.

Janet Lowther 6 years, 6 months ago

I figure, that for Obama to win Kansas, he'll have to tar McCain as thoroughly with the warmonger brush as Johnson did Goldwater.What Could possibly have the effect of Johnson's famous (infamous?) daisy/mushroom cloud ad of 1964? Accusing McCain of secretly planning to invade Iran might just do it, if Obama did it loud enough and long enough. ("Bomb, bomb, bomb bomb Iran. . .")"Say something loud enough, long enough and people will believe you."

Godot 6 years, 6 months ago

The bloated Agriculture bill that the Democrats pushed through is the reason food prices will remain, and stay, high. And if the Democrat's cap and trade bill goes through, it will result in a 6.5 trillion dollar tax increase on businesses that will, of course, be passed on to the consumers in higher prices.

BigDog 6 years, 6 months ago

Or it just could be that he is the least qualified Presidential candidate in modern history.

drake 6 years, 6 months ago

From the Democrat debate on ABC.GIBSON: All right. You have, however, said you would favor an increase in the capital gains tax. As a matter of fact, you said on CNBC, and I quote, "I certainly would not go above what existed under Bill Clinton," which was 28 percent. It's now 15 percent. That's almost a doubling, if you went to 28 percent. But actually, Bill Clinton, in 1997, signed legislation that dropped the capital gains tax to 20 percent. OBAMA: Right. GIBSON: And George Bush has taken it down to 15 percent. OBAMA: Right. GIBSON: And in each instance, when the rate dropped, revenues from the tax increased; the government took in more money. And in the 1980s, when the tax was increased to 28 percent, the revenues went down. So why raise it at all, especially given the fact that 100 million people in this country own stock and would be affected? OBAMA: Well, Charlie, what I've said is that I would look at raising the capital gains tax for purposes of fairness.

stuckinthemiddle 6 years, 6 months ago

scott3460maybe we should talk to the innocent people bombed in the Balkans or the families of a half a million dead Iraqi children about how peaceful and prosperous things were during the Clinton years...

yourworstnightmare 6 years, 6 months ago

Obama will not win Kansas. However, he might bring enough voters to the polls to give Slattery a decent chance of beating Pat Roberts. This would be victory enough for me.Obama winning Kansas would just be gravy on top of a Slattery win.Roberts has proven himself as a do-nothing place-keeper in the senate. Kansas deserves better.

MyName 6 years, 6 months ago

BD:>Or it just could be that he is the least qualified Presidential candidate in modern history.You mean other than, Abraham Lincoln, who spent a single term in the U.S. House, lost his bid for Senator, and was never even a governor. U.S. Grant and Dwight Eisenhower, who were great generals, but never held political office before being President, John F. Kennedy, who maybe have more years in the U.S. Congress, but had no experience in any executive branch.And while you're at it BD, why don't you look at the list of more experienced political "insiders" who either lost the election or made lousy Presidents. I guarantee it would be much longer and would include both of the Bush Presidents.

tolawdjk 6 years, 6 months ago

BigDog (Anonymous) says:"A tax increasing disaster for the American economy."And the American economy is doing well after 7 years of W?Incase you missed it, Presidents don't raise taxes. They might make the suggestion, but it is Congress with the power of the purse string. And special interests have power over Congress. It doesn't matter if its Captain Cooke or Captain Crunch commanding the ship, it will still sink if its rotted through with worms.

stuckinthemiddle 6 years, 6 months ago

it's not likely that Obama will win in Kansas...but I wouldn't rule it out entirely...I think there is a good chance that John McCain could do something and or say something between now and November that will create a virtual landslide for Obama...another chorus of "bomb bomb bomb Iran" could send people running like they did in 1964 when Goldwater joked about putting a nuke in the toilet at the Kremlin...in "64" Kansas went to LBJ:Barry won 4 deep-south states and his home state of Arizona:

stuckinthemiddle 6 years, 6 months ago

and...I'd end all those commercials with one of those nice, low solemn voices saying:"John McCain... he's scarier than Bush"

Godot 6 years, 6 months ago

Obama paints himself as the new JFK. What has Obama done for his country? Does it even begin to match what his country has done for him?

Godot 6 years, 6 months ago

Apparently the only way to defend Obama is to compare him to other leaders and politicians, and then hypothesize that, for some reason or another, he will be like the successful ones and different than the failed ones. The only thing Obama's supporters can hold on to is "hope." That sounds a lot like superstition to me.

scott3460 6 years, 6 months ago

"If McCain is a third Bush term :.. would Barack Obama be a second Jimmy Carter term?"No, he'd be a return to the peace and middle class prosperity of a third Clinton term.

BigDog 6 years, 6 months ago

Ending for Obama commercials:"Barack Obama ..... proud of America for the first time."

BigDog 6 years, 6 months ago

Wow! I would have thought that he would at least be proud of when Bill Clinton was elected the first black President.

RonBurgandy 6 years, 6 months ago

MyName (Anonymous) says: BD:>Or it just could be that he is the least qualified Presidential candidate in modern history.You mean other than, Abraham Lincoln, who spent a single term in the U.S. House, lost his bid for Senator, and was never even a governor. U.S. Grant and Dwight Eisenhower, who were great generals, but never held political office before being President, John F. Kennedy, who maybe have more years in the U.S. Congress, but had no experience in any executive branch.And while you're at it BD, why don't you look at the list of more experienced political "insiders" who either lost the election or made lousy Presidents. I guarantee it would be much longer and would include both of the Bush Presidents.--------------------------------------------------------Exactly. Great points.

yourworstnightmare 6 years, 6 months ago

Doesn't matter.McCain is a closet liberal, so no matter who wins, a liberal will bee in the White House.McCain is simply telling the republican base what they want to hear. Look at his record. McCain is a liberal.

Godot 6 years, 6 months ago

Obama, as does max1, has a pattern of deliberately taking people's statements out of context, using maybe just a phrase from a sentence, without modifiers, and presenting that nano-second of a complete statement as the person's thought or position, in a negative way.At the same time Obama plays this trick on others, he condemns those who play several minutes of unedited audio of his mentor Reverend Wright, claiming they are taking Wright's message out of context. That trick has been uncovered. So sorry. So sad. The public sees that there is no wizard, just a small man hiding behind a curtain of deceipt.

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