March 4, 2008

Crossing Over in Ohio

Primary election day in Ohio couldn't have come soon enough, because I have a bad habit of answering my phone at home. In the last two weeks I've had no less than five calls from "that woman", Mrs. Clinton, via taped message, four more from live pollsters, and at least three from the McCain camp. I'm guessing there were three or four more from Obama people, including one earnest young lady just last evening who I engaged on some specific issues before she got the hint and guessed that I would be "going the other way."

I know I'm not the first to ask, but why is the Do Not Call Registry rendered useless during political campaigns? It seems to me this is exactly the kind of thing for which it was intended...or should have been.

As I write this before 9 p.m. Tuesday, before any significant returns are in, the early Democratic numbers in Ohio are favoring Sen. Clinton. This has me wondering how much of a factor the "crossover" Republicans may turn out to be. I know several Republicans who wouldn't vote for a Clinton in the general election if they had a gun to their head, who went to the polls today, took a Democratic ballot, and pulled the lever for Hillary. Call it the "Rush Vote" if you like, since he has advocated this strategy to prolong the Democratic race and increase the chances of facing a candidate deemed more beatable in November than Obama.

For my part, I couldn't bring myself to do that, for a couple of reasons. First, I wanted to cast my ballot for Kirk Schuring for Congress to replace the retiring Ralph Regula in November. Second, I subscribe to the theory that when you have the chance to finally end Hillary's candidacy, you go for the silver bullet, so to speak. As troubled as I am by the prospect of an Obama presidency, I concede he holds more promise for uniting the country than does the sorry Senator from New York. I couldn't do anything that might advance her cause (and that of 'the Big He'), strategy or no strategy.

I'm curious to see if there will be any data from exit polling that might give a sense of how many GOP voters crossed over today for either Obama or Clinton, and of those, how many are committed McCain voters in November.

UPDATE 3/5: Here's a little bit of that kind of data from RCP.

Posted by dan at March 4, 2008 9:22 PM