For quite a while, there were certain trends that political observers were simply supposed to accept as fact: Barack Obama would struggle to win support from Latino voters. And Jewish voters. And working-class, low-income voters. These were obvious “truths” that “everyone” knew.
Democratic Sen. Barack Obama holds a 2 to 1 edge over Republican Sen. John McCain among the nation’s low-wage workers, but many are unconvinced that either presidential candidate would be better than the other at fixing the ailing economy or improving the health-care system, according to a new national poll.
Obama’s advantage is attributable largely to overwhelming support from two traditional Democratic constituencies: African Americans and Hispanics. But even among white workers — a group of voters that has been targeted by both parties as a key to victory in November — Obama leads McCain by 10 percentage points, 47 percent to 37 percent, and has the advantage as the more empathetic candidate.
Let’s not brush past this point too quickly — among low-income whites, Obama leads McCain by 10. To be sure, about one in six of the white workers remains uncommitted, but at least for now, Obama seems to have a sizable lead with a constituency that was rumored to be a lost cause up until fairly recently.
Greg Sargent concluded, “If this poll is accurate, McCain is dramatically under-performing among these voters. Will we be hearing a ‘McCain’s working class whites problem’ meme anytime soon?”
Given the data, it’s hardly an unreasonable argument to make.