Dislike of Obama has grown to cult-like proportions across the region. Statewide polls show the president losing by thunderous majorities. A recent poll by the Public Religion Research Institute highlighted in the New York Times shows that "among southern working class whites, Romney leads by 40 points, 62-22, an extraordinary gap." In the Midwest, Obama leads among the same group. Subtract the African-American precincts, and the president might not win 30 percent of votes in states like Arkansas and Oklahoma - one reason many Republicans suspect that national polls must be skewed.
So is it all about race? Not entirely, no. Many of the same voters who see President Obama as an African-born Muslim socialist would very likely support, say, Condoleezza Rice. (Or think they would, anyway.)
Nor, however, are their fears entirely irrational. Because if the polls are right - and a disinterested observer would have to say that professional pollsters have grown increasingly accurate at predicting recent contests - the 2012 presidential election may not bring about "The Rapture," but it could definitely mark the definitive end of a political era.
Specifically, it doesn't matter how badly President Obama loses the five Deep South states won by Alabama Gov. George Wallace in 1968 - along with, say, South Carolina, Texas and Oklahoma. Should he prevail in most of the nine "swing states" where everybody agrees that the contest will be decided, and where Obama currently appears to lead by strong majorities, the white, GOP-accented South will find itself politically marooned.
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