Roughly 0.00003 seconds after declaring Virginia for Obama, CNN posts its exit polls . (Disclaimer: DON’T BELIEVE ANYTHING YOU READ.) The main story is that Barack Obama has cut across demographics more than before by challenging Hillary among whites (48 percent to Clinton’s 51 percent) and winning among women (58 percent to 42 percent) and seniors (53 percent to 47 percent).
This is bizarre. Apparently only 84 percent of Clinton voters believe Clinton is most qualified to be commander in chief, while 16 percent think Obama is. Meanwhile, 99 percent of Obama voters believe he is most qualified. Perhaps this represents an electability argument for Obama, but it still seems odd that so many people would admit to voting for the candidate they believe it less qualified.
- Class still played a factor in the election, but less so than usual. Obama dominates in all regions except western Virginia, where downscale rural voters gave Clinton 54 percent of the vote. However, there was barely any difference between Obama’s victory margin among college grads and non-college grads. When broken down by yearly income, polls show that Obama won every tax bracket.
- Clinton eked out a victory among white voters and slammed Obama among white Democrats, 58 percent to 41 percent. But Obama dominated white independents, 64 percent to 35 percent. To the extent that he’s cutting into the white vote, it appears to be primarily among independents. Blacks, however, supported Obama in almost equal numbers (roughly 87 percent), regardless of their party status.
- As in the past, last-minute deciders went for Clinton. Among people who made up their mind today, 51 percent voted for Clinton. Everyone else—people who decided in the last three days, last week, last month, and before—swung toward Obama.
- Listen up, Texans: Obama won the Latino vote with 55 percent. Granted, that’s with Latinos comprising only 5 percent of the electorate. But until now they’ve been reliably pro-Clinton. Keep an eye on this number in Maryland and D.C.
- Obama may have won voters 60 and older, but his numbers are inversely proportional to voter age. In other words, his numbers decline among older voters. Conversely, Hillary’s trend upward.