Wednesday, February 6, 2008

May I Differ, Please?

Mark Steyn is a favorite of mine. I seldom disagree much with his observations on the passing parade but I think he mis-read the Huckaboom last night in AL, GA and TN. Mark wrote on The Corner:

"Well, the heartland spoke last night and about the only message it sent was that, no matter what the talk radio guys say, they're not voting for a Mormon; no way, no how."

I don't think that it's about Mormonism, frankly. Mitt's problem in the South is that he comes off as a slightly snobbish Country Club Yankee. I'm sure you can find people who didn't vote for Mitt because he's a Mormon, but it's not the prevailing view. Futures trading had AL, GA, TN and MN all going to McCain as the polls opened. I believe that the power of talk radio across "the heartland" knocked McCain down in those states. In the South the voters turned to the guy they're more comfortable with: Huck. In MN they turned to the one they feel more comfortable with: Mitt.

It isn't that he's Mormon. It's that he seems to be a Northeastern swell.

If Mitt had been the Governor of Utah instead of MA... knew how to wear jeans and boots... looked a little more like GI Joe and less like Ken... people in the mythical heartland would be warmer towards him.

I have little doubt, however, that the conventional (NY/DC) wisdom will be that, 1) Rush failed to stop McCain and 2) Southerners are a bunch of snake-handlin' goobers who won't vote for a Mormon.