Summary: Romney edges ahead of Obama in the latest poll, despite a horrific week in the news. Why will Romney win in November? First, the economy. Second, Americans pay little attention to the election. They vote first on their partisan leanings (quite strong for most people). Second, the decisive variable, the vote based on the economy in the months before the election. The first factor is neutral, since the two parties have roughly equivalent strength (both serve the plutocracy). It’s the economy that will put Romney over the top.
It’s the economy, stupid.
— James Carville, strategist of Bill Clinton’s victory in 1992 over President George H. W. Bush.
Slowly the deteriorating US economy affects the campaign, as seen in this New York Times/CBS poll conducted July 11 – 16 (full results here).
Questions #2 and #3 asked your opinion of the candidate:
- Obama: 36% favorable, 48% not favorable
- Romney: 32% favorable, 36% not favorable
More important is question #5: if the election were held today, who would you vote for?
Of course, the election is not over yet.
About elections, the key part of America’s political machinery
The Republicans’ campaign claims that they have a magic nostrum to bring prosperity. They will spin a victory in November 2012 as a repudiation of the Democrats, of economics, perhaps of arithmetic (see here and here). This shows rational self-government, just like that in a paleolithic tribe. If the rains come we see this as a sign of God’s favor, so we reward the Chief. Failure of the rains shows the God’s anger, requiring sacrifice.
Our Constitutional machinery does not work well because of grit in the gears. We’re the grit.
For more information
About the elections:
- Lilliput or America – who has a better way to choose its leaders?, 19 November 2008
- About campaigns for high office in America – we always expect a better result from the same process, 17 June 2009
- The economy speaks – and votes, 12 August 2010
- The winners and losers from this election, hidden amidst the noise, 3 November 2010
- Why do awesome people – like us – have such inadequate leaders?, 2 April 2012 — Because we vote.
- The hidden dynamics of the 2012 campaign, and what it’s doing to America, 9 March 2012
- President Romney will prove an effective President, reshaping America for his key supporters, 17 April 2012 — More specifically, for his rich supporters.
About America’s plutocratic future:
- Our fears are unwarranted. America is in fact well-governed. 18 August 2011
- The good news: America’s politics are neither polarized nor dysfunctional. That’s also the bad news., 16 November 2011
- Fear not! America will not fall due to its citizen’s imprudence. We’ve found a sure solution., 16 April 2012