Thursday, February 13, 2014

Yellow dog Democrats and Edward Kryn Republicans

There have long been Yellow Dog Democrats in North Carolina -- people who would vote for a yellow dog before they would vote for a Republican. Now, apparently, there are Edward Kryn Republicans -- people who will vote for someone they've never heard of over incumbent Democratic U.S. Sen. Kay Hagan.

A new poll from Public Policy Polling shows that Hagan, who seeks a second term this year, trails or is tied with all her potential Republican opponents, even though most people haven't heard of those Republicans. The poll finds Hagan tied with Kryn, 40 percent to 40 percent; she trails both Thom Tillis and Mark Harris 42-40, Greg Brannon 43-40, Heather Grant 41-39 and Ted Alexander 45-38. The same poll finds that only about one in four voters have heard of any of them other than Tillis. So a large number of people who have not heard of, say, Ted Alexander or Edward Kryn, (and so know nothing about their policy stances) say they would vote for them over Hagan.

It's not a stunning finding. A lot of people vote for the D or the R after the candidate's name rather than for the candidate. It makes sense to an extent -- if you're a far-right conservative or a far-left liberal, you'll regard almost anyone from your party as better than almost anyone from the other party. In Hagan's case, her support for Obamacare appears to be dragging her down; her approval numbers align almost perfectly with Obamacare approval numbers.

Everyone is busy and folks naturally take shortcuts to figure out whom to vote for. But what if a candidate had to do more than call themselves a Democrat or a Republican to earn your support? What if voters were invested enough that they learned about candidates' character, leadership abilities, vision and policy stances before backing them? Maybe then we wouldn't get so many dogs in public office.

-- Taylor Batten 


Garth Vader said...

Mr. Batten,

It's harder for people to "learn about candidates' character, leadership abilities, vision and policy stances" when the Observer and News & Observer provide little coverage beyond the copying and pasting of campaign finance reports. Your embarrassing "coverage" of recent candidate forums focused more on the guy who didn't show up than on those candidates who did.

Fred Johnson said...

In North Carolina, for many years it has been 40% Democrat, 40% Republican, and 20% mugwumps (party switchers who decide each election). This is the group that kept Jesse Helms in the Senate for 30 years and Jim Hunt as Governor for 16 of those years (and refused to elect Hunt over Helms). Kay Hagan has been painted with the brush of ObamaCare and she will have a tough time getting rid of that mark.

boomer said...

Since she was the deciding vote in passing obamacare, she certainly deserves the scrutiny

Anonymous said...

"or a far-left liberal, you'll regard almost anyone from your party as better than almost anyone from the other party..."

Not everyone at the far-left is an automatic Democrat. Very stereotypical reporting...

(Addendum - someone needs to really work on your captcha plugin - it's the worst around...)

CharlotteObserver said...

Just goes to show that the helpful media campaign by the observer and other media, to support Hagan and the democrats, has not worked.

Now the observer is going to have do do story after story, like that Dentist they want to stop his personal shooting range, or something like the campaign to close all charter schools they have taken on recently.

Dr Benzoid said...

What is worse, a uninformed or misinformed voter or a legitimate conservative or liberal voting strictly party line?

The 2006 mid terms only brought out 39% of eligible, registered voters; 2010 a total of 48%...hopefully knowledgeable, informed citizens; not dragged to the polls by funded PAC's.

Dickie Benzie