Oklahoma Democrats

I blogged earlier about the  political beliefs that characterize my beloved natal state of Oklahoma.   On Super Tuesday, Oklahoma also held its Democratic primary.  And Barack Obama only received 57% of the vote.  His main competitor for Oklahoma Democrats?  Anti-abortion militant Randall Terry!

See this, with its rather questionable analysis:   Why Oklahoma is so anti-Obama – The Washington Post.  The article begs the question of why Oklahoma urban areas don’t go for Obama the way other urban areas do.  Why does he lose in Oklahoma City while winning in Salt Lake City?  It isn’t because of race, as the article suggests.  Salt Lake City is 79.2% white, with only 1.9% black.  Oklahoma City is only 58.7% white, with 14.6% black.  The article also admits that Oklahoma is far from the most conservative state in the union, according to a recent study not even being in the top 10.  And lots of Democrats are getting elected to state offices, including a recent governor and a current Congressman.  For some reason, Oklahoma is extremely pro-life, including among Democrats.  But why Oklahoma is this way while other similar states are not remains a mystery.

 

About Gene Veith

Professor of Literature at Patrick Henry College, the Director of the Cranach Institute at Concordia Theological Seminary, a columnist for World Magazine and TableTalk, and the author of 18 books on different facets of Christianity & Culture.

  • Michael B.

    An interesting look at this phenomenon is the book “What’s the Matter with Kansas?” He asks some interesting questions: Why do so many of us vote against our economic interests? Where’s the outrage at corporate manipulators?

  • Michael B.

    An interesting look at this phenomenon is the book “What’s the Matter with Kansas?” He asks some interesting questions: Why do so many of us vote against our economic interests? Where’s the outrage at corporate manipulators?

  • SKPeterson

    Many of us vote against our economic interests because they’re not really our economic interests. Most of the “economic interests” proposed in What’s the Matter with Kansas are what a certain set of leftist elites think should be other people’s economic interests. This usually means that the people of Kansas (and everywhere else) are supposed to realize that their economic interests are best served by turning over the economy to this elite who will then distribute the benefits of the economy equally upon everyone. The skies will then always be blue (unless we have some of those darn stormy headwinds) and the fields full of bunny rabbits. I think Kansans and other realize that replacing the Evil Rightwing corporate manipulators with Benevolent Leftwing corporate manipulators who, of course, will only manipulate things for good purposes because their hearts are in the right place, is probably not in their long term economic interests.

  • SKPeterson

    Many of us vote against our economic interests because they’re not really our economic interests. Most of the “economic interests” proposed in What’s the Matter with Kansas are what a certain set of leftist elites think should be other people’s economic interests. This usually means that the people of Kansas (and everywhere else) are supposed to realize that their economic interests are best served by turning over the economy to this elite who will then distribute the benefits of the economy equally upon everyone. The skies will then always be blue (unless we have some of those darn stormy headwinds) and the fields full of bunny rabbits. I think Kansans and other realize that replacing the Evil Rightwing corporate manipulators with Benevolent Leftwing corporate manipulators who, of course, will only manipulate things for good purposes because their hearts are in the right place, is probably not in their long term economic interests.

  • http://homewardbound-cb.blogspot.com ChrisB

    Unfortunately, pro-life Democrats are persona non grata in the national party. Under a Democratic majority, pro-life Dems don’t even have the opportunity to vote pro-life.

  • http://homewardbound-cb.blogspot.com ChrisB

    Unfortunately, pro-life Democrats are persona non grata in the national party. Under a Democratic majority, pro-life Dems don’t even have the opportunity to vote pro-life.

  • Cincinnatus

    What’s the Matter with Kansas is horrible scholarship and elitist drivel. Of course votes will appear anomalous when you dictate that the only “reasonable” vote is one that will most readily produce direct handouts from the federal government to you.

    But not only is it the case that these are not what some people consider to be their economic interests, as SKPeterson suggests; it’s also the case that some people don’t vote solely on the basis of their purely economic interests.

  • Cincinnatus

    What’s the Matter with Kansas is horrible scholarship and elitist drivel. Of course votes will appear anomalous when you dictate that the only “reasonable” vote is one that will most readily produce direct handouts from the federal government to you.

    But not only is it the case that these are not what some people consider to be their economic interests, as SKPeterson suggests; it’s also the case that some people don’t vote solely on the basis of their purely economic interests.

  • Carl Vehse

    “The article begs the question of why Oklahoma urban areas don’t go for Obama the way other urban areas do.”

    Perhaps Oklahoma urban areas don’t have as many cemeteries as other urban areas like Chicago.

    Seriously, Compost clymer, Chris Cillizza, spins the 57 percent vote of the Oklahoma Demonicrat primary into an issue of why the entire population of Oklahoma doesn’t like Barry Hussein 0bama.

    Beside the fact his assertion that the Oklahoma primary result “begs the question” is erroneous in the proper petitio principii sense, Chris also dismisses the correct answer to his question given by a GOP consultant with a “Jokes aside” quip.

    Chris’s preconceived conclusion: It’s Oklahoma’s fault they don’t like Barry enough.

    BTW, the Oklahoma Demonicrat primary had 113,000 votes cast; the GOP primary had 287,000 votes. Oklahoma doesn’t allow crossover voting.

  • Carl Vehse

    “The article begs the question of why Oklahoma urban areas don’t go for Obama the way other urban areas do.”

    Perhaps Oklahoma urban areas don’t have as many cemeteries as other urban areas like Chicago.

    Seriously, Compost clymer, Chris Cillizza, spins the 57 percent vote of the Oklahoma Demonicrat primary into an issue of why the entire population of Oklahoma doesn’t like Barry Hussein 0bama.

    Beside the fact his assertion that the Oklahoma primary result “begs the question” is erroneous in the proper petitio principii sense, Chris also dismisses the correct answer to his question given by a GOP consultant with a “Jokes aside” quip.

    Chris’s preconceived conclusion: It’s Oklahoma’s fault they don’t like Barry enough.

    BTW, the Oklahoma Demonicrat primary had 113,000 votes cast; the GOP primary had 287,000 votes. Oklahoma doesn’t allow crossover voting.

  • Adrienne

    I am a Kansas native and lived in Oklahoma for seven years. To me the answer to this question is obvious, though I could be missing something. The vast majority of Oklahomans are religious and those that are not were likely raised in a very moral, faith-based environment (hence their pro-life proclivity). As the first commenter suggests, core religious values usually supersede any economic interests a person may have.

  • Adrienne

    I am a Kansas native and lived in Oklahoma for seven years. To me the answer to this question is obvious, though I could be missing something. The vast majority of Oklahomans are religious and those that are not were likely raised in a very moral, faith-based environment (hence their pro-life proclivity). As the first commenter suggests, core religious values usually supersede any economic interests a person may have.

  • formerly just steve

    @ #2, Well said.

  • formerly just steve

    @ #2, Well said.

  • DonS

    Further to the issue of voting your economic interests, raised by Michael B @ 1, and following on the comments of SKP and Cincinnatus above, it is definitely a myth that voting Democratic is voting for your economic interests for most people. Certainly, our current energy policy, imposed upon us by the environmental zealotry of wealthy, white urban Democrats, harms the poor more than anyone else by making utilities and gasoline unreasonably expensive, the utility costs further driving industry and its good middle class jobs out of high-cost areas like California. Laws imposed by union supporters of the Democratic party prevent non-union companies and their workers from competing for many jobs, particularly in construction that includes government funding, and greatly increases the cost of public works projects, meaning that fewer can be built. High taxes obviously increase the costs of everything. Government employee unions, and costs attributable to their advantageous pensions and retiree medical care squeeze out the truly needy from benefits, because they suck up the available funding.

    The idea that voting Democratic is voting for your economic interests is largely a myth.

  • DonS

    Further to the issue of voting your economic interests, raised by Michael B @ 1, and following on the comments of SKP and Cincinnatus above, it is definitely a myth that voting Democratic is voting for your economic interests for most people. Certainly, our current energy policy, imposed upon us by the environmental zealotry of wealthy, white urban Democrats, harms the poor more than anyone else by making utilities and gasoline unreasonably expensive, the utility costs further driving industry and its good middle class jobs out of high-cost areas like California. Laws imposed by union supporters of the Democratic party prevent non-union companies and their workers from competing for many jobs, particularly in construction that includes government funding, and greatly increases the cost of public works projects, meaning that fewer can be built. High taxes obviously increase the costs of everything. Government employee unions, and costs attributable to their advantageous pensions and retiree medical care squeeze out the truly needy from benefits, because they suck up the available funding.

    The idea that voting Democratic is voting for your economic interests is largely a myth.

  • #4 Kitty

    @Adrienne

    The vast majority of Oklahomans are religious and those that are not were likely raised in a very moral, faith-based environment (hence their pro-life proclivity).

    Would you say that Oklahomans are more religious or cultivate a stronger “moral, faith-based” environment than the folks who live in Kansas?

  • #4 Kitty

    @Adrienne

    The vast majority of Oklahomans are religious and those that are not were likely raised in a very moral, faith-based environment (hence their pro-life proclivity).

    Would you say that Oklahomans are more religious or cultivate a stronger “moral, faith-based” environment than the folks who live in Kansas?

  • Adrienne

    @#4 Kitty

    You know, it’s hard to speak in absolutes about something like this. I mean Kansas is definitely part of the Bible belt too, but from my non-scientific observations there genuinely seems to be something about Oklahoma that makes religious tradition more widespread and deeply seeded. It would be interesting to research what historical factors could possibly be contributing to this.

    @DonS

    I completely agree that voting Democratic would not be in someone’s best economic interests. But I think for this discussion we are talking about people’s perceived economic interests–and many people, especially those in lower income brackets perceive the Democratic party to be more economically advantageous to their situation. So the question Dr. Veith posed is trying to find out why Oklahomans (who historically have identified with the economics of the Democratic party) consistently vote anti-Obama.

  • Adrienne

    @#4 Kitty

    You know, it’s hard to speak in absolutes about something like this. I mean Kansas is definitely part of the Bible belt too, but from my non-scientific observations there genuinely seems to be something about Oklahoma that makes religious tradition more widespread and deeply seeded. It would be interesting to research what historical factors could possibly be contributing to this.

    @DonS

    I completely agree that voting Democratic would not be in someone’s best economic interests. But I think for this discussion we are talking about people’s perceived economic interests–and many people, especially those in lower income brackets perceive the Democratic party to be more economically advantageous to their situation. So the question Dr. Veith posed is trying to find out why Oklahomans (who historically have identified with the economics of the Democratic party) consistently vote anti-Obama.

  • DonS

    Adrienne @ 10: Yes, I do understand that I was not directly answering Dr. Veith’s question, though I think my answer is an indirect one. I was directly responding to Michael B’s comment @ 1, and the premise he carries forth from the book “What’s the Matter with Kansas”, that voting Republican for a working class person is voting against one’s economic interests. Of course, the nature of my response is that the premise is fundamentally flawed.

    However, as I mentioned above, my response is indirectly related to Dr. Veith’s post, in that I do believe that Democratic OK voters reject the notion that, to the extent that national Democrats like Obama are aligned with government and education unions, and wealthy, white urban environmentalists, they are not making policy in the best interests of working class red-state Americans. I think southern Democrats like those in OK recognize this. Local state Democrats who win in OK do so on the basis of populism combined with at least a vocalized social conservatism or traditionalism. The are not aligned with the blue state coastal Democrats, at least in their rhetoric.

  • DonS

    Adrienne @ 10: Yes, I do understand that I was not directly answering Dr. Veith’s question, though I think my answer is an indirect one. I was directly responding to Michael B’s comment @ 1, and the premise he carries forth from the book “What’s the Matter with Kansas”, that voting Republican for a working class person is voting against one’s economic interests. Of course, the nature of my response is that the premise is fundamentally flawed.

    However, as I mentioned above, my response is indirectly related to Dr. Veith’s post, in that I do believe that Democratic OK voters reject the notion that, to the extent that national Democrats like Obama are aligned with government and education unions, and wealthy, white urban environmentalists, they are not making policy in the best interests of working class red-state Americans. I think southern Democrats like those in OK recognize this. Local state Democrats who win in OK do so on the basis of populism combined with at least a vocalized social conservatism or traditionalism. The are not aligned with the blue state coastal Democrats, at least in their rhetoric.

  • Adrienne

    @ DonS #11. I see what you are saying and I agree. The Oklahoma Democrats are a very different breed than Obama et al and coastal Dems. and ultimately have different interests.

  • Adrienne

    @ DonS #11. I see what you are saying and I agree. The Oklahoma Democrats are a very different breed than Obama et al and coastal Dems. and ultimately have different interests.

  • Carl Vehse

    “His [Traitorbama's] main competitor for Oklahoma Democrats? Anti-abortion militant Randall Terry!”

    One wonders what the Oklahoma Demonicrat vote would have been if the primary were held tomorrow after it was announced today that the 0bamacare co-pay for abortion is only one dollar.

    The 0bamacare co-pay for euthanizing rich, old parents will probably be on a percentage basis of the estate.

  • Carl Vehse

    “His [Traitorbama's] main competitor for Oklahoma Democrats? Anti-abortion militant Randall Terry!”

    One wonders what the Oklahoma Demonicrat vote would have been if the primary were held tomorrow after it was announced today that the 0bamacare co-pay for abortion is only one dollar.

    The 0bamacare co-pay for euthanizing rich, old parents will probably be on a percentage basis of the estate.

  • helen

    Carl Vehse @ 13
    The 0bamacare co-pay for euthanizing rich, old parents
    will probably be on a percentage basis of the estate.</i

    Aside from all the Biblical warnings about putting your trust in riches,
    that's one more reason to be comforted that I am not among the 1% ! ;)

  • helen

    Carl Vehse @ 13
    The 0bamacare co-pay for euthanizing rich, old parents
    will probably be on a percentage basis of the estate.</i

    Aside from all the Biblical warnings about putting your trust in riches,
    that's one more reason to be comforted that I am not among the 1% ! ;)