[I]f you look at Obama's vote in Pennsylvania, you begin to see the outlines of the old George McGovern coalition that haunted the Democrats during the '70s and '80s, led by college students and minorities. In Pennsylvania, Obama did best in college towns (60 to 40 percent in Penn State's Centre County) and in heavily black areas like Philadelphia.Do you think it's odd that "somewhat conservative" voters are more inclined to vote for Obama than moderates? It doesn't really fit Judis's "Next McGovern" theory.
Its ideology is very liberal. Whereas in the first primaries and caucuses, Obama benefited from being seen as middle-of-the-road or even conservative, he is now receiving his strongest support from voters who see themselves as "very liberal." In Pennsylvania, he defeated Clinton among "very liberal" voters by 55 to 45 percent, but lost "somewhat conservative" voters by 53 to 47 percent and moderates by 60 to 40 percent. In Wisconsin and Virginia, by contrast, he had done best against Clinton among voters who saw themselves as moderate or somewhat conservative.
The primaries, unfortunately, are not going to get any easier for Obama. While he should win easily in North Carolina, where he benefits from a large African-American vote and support in the state's college communities, he is going to have trouble in Indiana, Kentucky, and West Virginia, where he will once again be faced by a large white working class vote.... [I]f Obama doesn't find a way now to speak to these voters, he is going to have trouble winning that large swath of states from Pennsylvania through Missouri in which a Democrat must do well to gain the presidency.