"As you know, the President has problems with blue collar working class voters."
6/18/12, "Obama’s WV Problem Stretches Into PA," PoliticsPA, Gibson, Gleason
A review of county-by-county vote totals show that the President underperformed historic trends, as well as other Democrats on the ballot this year. [Darker shading=higher undervote]
Over 30 percent of voters left the presidential ballot blank rather than select Obama’s name in 27 counties. That’s compared to just 6 counties apiece for the two other unopposed statewide Democratic primary candidates, incumbent PA Treasurer Rob McCord and Auditor General hopeful (and first time statewide candidate) Eugene DePasquale.
In southwestern PA minus Pittsburgh and Allegheny County, Obama’s undervote was about 10 percent higher than that of Ed Rendell, who ran unopposed for re-election as Governor in 2006.
Undervote refers to the number of blank ballot selections as a proportion of total voters; in this case, the Democrats who voted in the primary but did not make a selection for President....
That’s not surprising according to Dr. Terry Madonna, Director of the Franklin & Marshall College Poll and Professor of Public Affairs at Franklin & Marshall College.
“The first point is that most, not all, [of the undervote is] in culturally conservative counties which we would call many of the Democrats there ‘Reagan Democrats,’” he said. “Some are in rural counties. As you know, the President has problems with blue collar working class voters. He had that in 2008 and he faces the same problem now. That may not get better with his support for gay marriage and immigration reform. Also these are areas that tend
- to have higher unemployment which does not help.”
“But,” he added, “In all the polls the President still leads in the state, so one-on-one against Romney it might not have as much meaning, but it certainly shows a measure of discontent. That might also in part explain the huge push for a ground game, the 24 field offices
- the Obama campaign has opened in the state.”"...
Obama results in Penna. 2012 primary cross check with maps of gas-bearing Marcellus shale and a map of active drilling wells in the 'Keystone State.' (Pa. county undervote map above).
Now, the distribution map of the Marcellus Shale:
While we’re at it, a third map shows the locations of active drilling wells in the Keystone State:...
In discussions of energy and politics, the focus is often on the bogeyman, “Big Oil”. But in the energy states, energy policy intersects with electoral politics at a very local grassroots level....
So drilling benefits only the landed gentry? Hardly.
Oil and gas money usually doesn’t end up under a mattress. It gets deposited in local banks. The money ends up with local car dealers, building contractors and furniture stores.
And then there are the oilfield jobs, generally better paying jobs, with better benefits, than previously existed in the community.
Consequently, local folks generally come to like oil and gas. Especially the Chambers of Commerce. Even local pols, local Democratic pols, like oil and gas activity because the increased valuations mean more property tax dollars filling the public coffers and enriching local school boards.
As the maps show, even Democratic voters vote their pocketbooks."