The Year of Moving Forward

The Year of Moving Forward
At our 4 person wedding reception in DC

Monday, November 17, 2008

Polls, Statistics, Money, and a Dog

If you make it through this post, you will be rewarded with a great picture at the end.
An anonymous comment asked the following:

In a blue state like California, who voted for this ban? Democrats overwhelmingly carried this state. Since blacks and Hispanics are more traditional concerning gay rights it would seem to me that the very people who supported Obama voted for this ban. So in theory Obama supporters did this. What is Obama's position on this ban? How can he go against his supporters in the state of California? I really don't agree with the term gay marriage, but I do understand the need for rights, privileges, and financial protection. But protesting where the advertising money came from seems odd when the people of the state voted. Should we protest that they also voted for Obama?

These are important concerns, and Jeff posted a response while I was writing this. You can read Jeff's response in the comments to yesterday's post.

In California, 61 % ( 7,342,729) of voters voted for Obama and 37% (4,501,611) for McCain and 2% (225,488) voted for third party candidates.
52% (6,242,786) voted for Prop 8, 48% (5,727,336) voted against Prop 8.

The difference between Yes and No votes on Prop 8 was 515,450, so if only 257,726 people changed their vote, but still voted, the Prop would have failed.

Some people that voted for president (12,069,828 voters) did not vote on Prop 8 (11,970,122 voters), a difference of 99,706.

Because the number that voted for 3rd party candidates (225,488) is fairly close to the number of vote flips that would need to change the outcome of Prop 8 (257, 726) it is hard to make a statement that the number of Obama voters who voted Yes is significant. If I used all of the statistics I learned last year, and had SAS or SPSS on this computer, I could back this up, but I don't.

But the exit polls showed that African Americans, who voted heavily for Obama, also voted heavily in favor of Prop 8. Further examination of the exit polls shows that the more educated one was, the more likely to vote No.
Voting Yes: those with a high school only education (56%), some college (57%). College grads were evenly split (50%) and those with post graduate education voted yes only 40%.
So it gets complicated, but it seems to be more a divide because of education than race. Blacks and Latinos are less likely to have a college degree or post graduate degree, and their numbers swing toward Yes votes. And it seems likely that education could influence one's beliefs about same sex marriage and civil rights, where race in itself would not.

As to protesting against where the money came from, I see no problem. Right wing Christians have protested against Disney, Ford and McDonald's for their (sometimes wavering) support of gay rights by calling for boycotts (with limited success, I might add). They wanted to hold those corporations accountable for their support for equality (in general, not on Prop 8).

People who donated to Yes on 8 are listed on the State of California web site, just as those who donated to No on 8 are. Business owners need to realize that they might be held accountable for public support of the issues, just as Disney and Ford and McDonald's were held accountable for their support of issues. And if they feel strongly enough to donate money, they should be proud regardless of the consequences.
However, they should really feel shame, for donating money to take away an established right from a particular group of people.

And because the money was used to create negative ads that used lies and misconceptions to scare people regarding their children and to manipulate them into voting Yes, then certainly, exposing the ones who contributed is justified. Anyone who was faced with losing the right to equal treatment would do the same thing.

OK, here's an unusual sight, from Morgan County, AL.
A pick up truck, from Alaska, with an Obama sticker. And a great dog. And another sticker that reads, "Alaska Girls Kick Ass."

In part because I am a southern gentleman, but mostly because the dog was keeping his eye on me, I asked the driver if I could photograph her truck. She laughed and said yes, and that I was the first person to ask. She said people take pictures all the time, she could be stopped in traffic and people would get out of their cars and run up and snap a picture.

I didn't ask what she thought about Sarah Palin.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

How do our friends in South Alabama feel about the contributions totalling $600 made in support of the proposition from Walter Morgan/SDT Incorporated? SDT is apparently a telecommunications contractor in Fairhope.