Barack Obama wants my Dad. So does John McCain. The problem is he still wants Hillary Clinton.
My Father has been branded by the media as a “lunchbox Democrat.” He’s one of the millions of working class Americans who turned out at the polls to proudly vote Clinton.
For this lifetime Pennsylvanian in his mid seventies, the choice was an easy one. He’s been watching Hillary on the news since 1992. He knows her. He likes her. She represents him. Gender is irrelevant.
The fact that Obama isn’t a slam dunk in Pennsylvania, Ohio and West Virginia is a big problem for the Senator.
After years of abysmal approval ratings for George W. Bush, one would think his heartfelt message of change would almost guarantee a landslide in November. That is not the case. McCain is competitive and closing in.
I love talking politics with my Dad because I learn exactly how this group of voters think. I soak it up.
When Obama chose Senator Joe Biden as his running mate, Dad wasn’t impressed. Not good news for Barack. Not good at all. Despite all the odds in his favor, it suddenly occurred to me that Obama may actually loose.
“Why wasn’t Hillary chosen as VP? She would have locked-up this election. The team would be unbeatable!”
That’s the general view. The fact that she was either ignored, or reviewed and rejected is just another insult to injury.
So how does Obama reach the hardcore Hillary Democrat? It may be too late–even with Senator Clinton herself taking center stage tonight in Denver. It stands as the most important speech of the Democratic Convention. Three swing states hang in the balance. It’s all on Hillary’s shoulders to deliver her 18 million voters.
On Wednesday I will call my Dad to take the pulse of the Pennsylvania. If he’s in line, even tepidly, Obama is in good shape. If not the battle rages.
In the end — get my Dad’s vote, get the White House.
Andrew Wadium is Director of Media Relations at Black Enterprise.