NewsCopy, New York: The Evil Race Card: No Bradley Effect

NewsCopy, New York

The Evil Race Card: No Bradley Effect


I believe it is racist and politically stupid to discuss something called “The Bradley Effect” — a theory hinged opportunistically on the premise of people’s racial fears.

News Copy does not endorse nor embrace The Bradley Effect (courtesy of CNN):

The political phenomenon that has afflicted some African-American politicians is mostly closely associated with the failed gubernatorial hopes of Tom Bradley, who was mayor of Los Angeles in 1982 when he ran for California’s highest political office. In the 1980s and early 1990s, polls in statewide or other high-profile races in which a white candidate was running against a black candidate typically overestimated the share of the vote that the black candidate ultimately received.

Ironically, former San Francisco Mayor Willie Brown has predicted a loss of 4-5 points for Obama in certain key states due to The Bradley Effect.

I don’t agree — and I think Democrats could bring up the racial fears to prompt a backlash that helps Obama.  Ostensibly, both sides will play the evil race card.

This is dangerously provocative stuff on both sides, particularly among elitist-style Republican consultants who have started to verbalize this scenario more in recent days.  It was discussed among high-level Democrats during the primaries.

Jim Geraghty on National Review also discounted The Bradley Effect — but it’s ominous for some political observers.

The interesting thing is that judging from the comments of Brown and those influencing the thinking of Juan Williams of NPR and Fox News, at least some Obama surrogates are among those most convinced that the Bradley Effect will show up on Election Day.  “Obama’s got to have a buffer of 5 to 8 percentage points,” Williams said. “So if you have a race in which McCain is at, you know, 41, and Obama’s at 41, then imagine that really what you’re looking at is McCain at 49, Obama at 41.”

So McCain would win and the country would be dogged with news stories for the next 40 years that a Democrat lost because of racism?

No one wants to win that way.



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