The black-white divide in Obama's popularity
By: Byron York
Chief Political Correspondent
04/28/09 10:52 PM
On his 100th day in office, Barack Obama enjoys high job approval ratings, no matter what poll you consult. But if a new survey by the New York Times is accurate, the president and some of his policies are significantly less popular with white Americans than with black Americans, and his sky-high ratings among African-Americans make some of his positions appear a bit more popular overall than they actually are.
Asked whether their opinion of the president is favorable or unfavorable, 49 percent of whites in the Times poll say they have a favorable opinion of Obama. Among blacks the number is 80 percent. Twenty-one percent of whites say their view of the president is unfavorable, while the number of blacks with unfavorable opinions of Obama is too small to measure.
The Obama Effect even spills over to the subject of Vice President Joe Biden. Forty-four percent of white respondents say they approve of the way Biden is handling his job, while 81 percent of blacks approve.
(rikyrah here: I guess Black folks recognize RIDE OR DIE JOE, and are appreciative)
In the final count, 62 percent of whites approve of the job Obama is doing as president. Among blacks, the number is 96 percent. Together, the two groups give Obama an overall job approval rating of 68 percent. It seems reasonable to guess that if Obama's approval begins to slip in the future, it will likely go down among whites before it goes down among blacks. A continued high rating among black Americans will be a valuable pillar of support for the president, should he one day find himself in political trouble.
don't you get it?
our own RonnieB did:
I was thinking the exact same thing. This muthaf---ah has the nerve to suggest that we are not "actual" Americans. That Black Americans' support of a White president is real, but our support of a Black president is an "appearance".
Yeah, RonnieB, that's EXACTLY what he's suggesting.
dnA of JJP, did a wonderful smackdown of York:
BLACK PEOPLE AND WOMEN RUIN EVERYTHING.
I'm not sure how it makes sense that this means Obama's positions are "more popular overall than they actually are", unless you're arguing that black people don't actually count.
Part of the point of York's column is to provoke the common conservative response that black support for Obama is "racist." The problem is that while Obama's support among black folks is high, it's only really a bit higher than that of Al Gore, John Kerry, and Bill Clinton, all of whom earned close to 9 out of 10 black votes in their respective elections. Weigel writes that "black voters strongly support the Democratic Party, and have since the 1960s, for a number of complicated reasons." Maybe black support for Obama has more to do with things like Republicans arguing that black votes don't really count than it does with Obama being black. Note that Al Sharpton and Carol Mosely-Braun have never sat behind the desk at the Oval Office.
It's telling that rather than conclude the GOP should do something about its deficit with women and minority voters, the typical conservative response is to simply fantasize about a world in which we might not actually exist. I don't mean to spook anyone (well, maybe Pat Buchanan) but we're not exactly going anywhere. Deal with it.
Tell me about it. I'm not going ANYWHERE.