Monday, July 31, 2006

Wonky Numbers

Ben Tribbett of Not Larry Sabato reports that only 39 percent of African-Americans support Jim Webb for the Senate. Sixteen percent support Sen. George Allen and a whopping 45 percent are undecided.

Howling Latina decided to do a little late night math, just for fun; and here's what she came up with.

The African-American population in Virginia is approximately 20 percent; of course, not every person votes, so conservatively estimating that 15 percent of voters in November will be African-American, that's still a very sizable voting bloc.

Taking the 45 percent of undecideds (as illustrated by Raising Kaine) times the 15 percent of African-Americans who vote, and the total is an extra 7 percent for Webb (rounded-out).

Now, taking 7 percent times targeted ultimate percentage who vote for Webb of 80 percent, will give the Webb campaign an extra 6 percent.

Using the 20 percent of undecideds (as illustrated by Raising Kaine) times 15 of African-Americans already included in the earlier sample and you arrive with 17 percent undecided sample size who are not African American.

Taking the 17 percent of undecideds and multiplying times targeted conversion rate of 75 percent adds yet another 13 percent to Webb's total.

Finally, that's 32 percent who already support Webb + 6 percent from the undecided African American voters + 13 percent from the undecided who are not African American, and voila, you have a total of 51 percent who support Webb.

And folks, that's what Jim Webb has to do. Convert 75 percent of the undecideds who are not African-American and convert 80 percent of the African-American voters.

As RK noted, the undecideds know Allen very well; yet they ain't committing. This is not a good sign for Allen.

Howling Latina remembers when she phone banked for Jim Webb in the primary how African-Americans overwhelmingly told her they were uncommitted; but HL knew better; she knew these folks were voting for Harris Miller; and they did.

An uncommitted voter this late into Allen's Senate term means only one thing: all Webb needs to do is whisper sweet little truths about about Bush and Allen, and they're his for the TAKING.

Are these the type of "sweet little truths" Webb would be whispering to black voters?

"To understand me, you've got to look at things like my mother. My mother grew up in East Arkansas. When her father died, they were the only white family living in a black section of town. They had to follow the crops, picked cotton, strawberries . . . there is not a black family in this country that had it rougher than they did. I am still finding out how rough things were. (Washington Post, 12/8/1985).

"Affirmative action, which originally sought to repair the state-induced damage to blacks from slavery and its aftermath, has within one generation brought about a permeating state-sponsored racism that is as odious as the Jim Crow laws it sought to countermand. A Soviet-style bureaucracy of political commissars now monitors every level of our society to ensure that racial and gender "diversity" matches pre-ordained models, using the awesome powers of government to make certain that white males are not "overrepresented" in education, employment or government contracts." (Wall Street Journal, 5/22/00)

“It would be folly to assume that affirmative action has done anything but exacerbate these disparities” (Wall Street Journal, 6/19/95)

"[The racial polices established by Clinton for the military are] absolute stupidity," said former Navy Secretary James Webb, who has criticized Clinton administration efforts to make the military "reflect society at large." (Washington Times, 8/9/95)

Maybe the reason so many black voters are undecided is that they generally like Allen (but not his party) and don't trust Webb (but like his party). My guess, there will be a very small black turnout.
God help us if you're right!
Outside of what anonymous posted, you have to look at where the black vote is concentrated and what will make them turn out. Bobby Scott in the 3rd is running unopposed - no reason for blacks to go to the polls there. And the 4th CD is unopposed. Again, no reason to go to the polls.
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