Potomac Primary: Obama Takes Virginia


It’s 7 pm EST and polls just closed in Virginia. CNN took about one second to call the race for Obama. That means the exit polls must show a real blowout. On the Republican side, CNN says Huckabee and McCain are in a tight race. I’ll go look for some exit polls while we wait one hour for polls to close in D.C. and Maryland.

Okay, CNN exit poll numbers for Virginia Democrats. African-American voters went 90-10 for Obama, in a margin that is getting bigger and bigger. White voters went 51-48 for Clinton, in a margin that is getting smaller and smaller. And women went 58-42 for Obama, in a shocking result. (To break that down a little further, Obama won white men by 12 while Clinton won white women by 16. Obama won both black women and men by huge margins.)

More numbers for Virginia Dems. (If Maryland or D.C. is markedly different from these numbers, I’ll let you know.) Obama won the over-$50,000 crowd by 63-37 and won the under-$50,000 crowd 59-40. He won the Social Security crowd by six points. These numbers drive an even bigger spike into the “50-50” theory about Clinton voters.

One of the reasons why McCain is struggling: Virginia is an open primary, meaning people of any party affiliation can vote in either race. The Democratic turnout was large today (certainly larger than the Republican turnout) and about 30 percent of the voters in the Democratic race were independents and Republicans. They went heavily for Obama. Those are potential McCain voters.

For the record, McCain won moderates in the Virginia Republican primary by a whopping margin of 34 points. Huckabee won conservatives in the primary by 23 points. The problem for McCain is that there were far more conservatives voting today.

$500,000 MATCHING GIFT

In 2014, before Donald Trump announced his run for president, we knew we had to do something different to address the fundamental challenge facing journalism: how hard-hitting reporting that can hold the powerful accountable can survive as the bottom falls out of the news business.

Being a nonprofit, we started planning The Moment for Mother Jones: A special campaign to raise $25 million for key investments to make Mother Jones the strongest watchdog it can be. Five years later, readers have stepped up and contributed an astonishing $23 million in gifts and future pledges. This is an incredible statement from the Mother Jones community in the face of the huge threats—both economic and political—against the free press.

Read more about The Moment and see what we've been able to accomplish thanks to readers' incredible generosity so far, and please join them today. Your gift will be matched dollar for dollar, up to $500,000 total, during this critical moment for journalism.

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our newsletters

Subscribe and we'll send Mother Jones straight to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate

We have a new comment system! We are now using Coral, from Vox Media, for comments on all new articles. We'd love your feedback.