The Lincoln Plawg - the blog with footnotes

Politics and law from a British perspective (hence Politics LAW BloG): ''People who like this sort of thing...'' as the Great Man said

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Friday, August 29, 2003

How rainbow will Bustamante's coalition be?

Little time, unfortunately, to let the entertainment value of the Golden State pantomime soak in - domestic pantomime duties take priority!

But it seems to be bubbling nicely.

Cruz Bustamante, as a guy who once (if he doesn't now) yearned, as a MEChA man, for the expulsion of the Yankee from formerly Mexican lands - as discussed on August 24, seems to be aping Lázaro Cárdenas who, as president South of the Border, nationalised the US oil businesses in 1938. (Cruz cannot go quite that far - unless he really has bumped secession up his agenda. But, with his proposal to treat gasoline as a utility, he's going pretty far. [1])

He seems to be offering Golden Staters a chance to turn back the clock, and vote for Pat Brown in 1966 (rather than Ronald Reagan, trailblazer for the Governator [2]).

But, it seems, blacks may poop the party: a piece by Earl Ofari Hutchinson (a brother, I suspect) suggests they may - and not only because of the much-hyped nigger incident in 2001: Hispanics in CA may [3] trail blacks in every statistical voting category (proportion of adult population eligible to vote, proportion of eligibles registered, proportion of registered who vote), but that slack is being pulled tight. The piece says there are now 24 Hispanic Dems in the state legislature, as against six blacks. In the US House, the proportions are the reverse (four blacks, one Hispanic [4]): but, perhaps, just for now.

Now, turn the argument round: if Cruz wins despite a mass black abstention (the piece says he can't), he's going to be (even) less generous to black interests than if they'd stayed loyal: for the blacks to shed their regularity from pique at a historical slip of the tongue, or through feeling elbowed out, would at best (if Arnie wins) send all the wrong signals to Dem pols pondering election strategy, and, at worst, (if Cruz wins) actually accelerate the elbowing process.

Not that I discount the possibility that they know more than me on the subject...

  1. It's a Fox story, so beware the Curse of Franken (ho, ho...)

  2. Interesting short review of a book on the rise of CA conservatism.

  3. My surmise - from recollections at looking at the stats some time ago. Caveat lector as ever...

  4. He credits CA with six seats in Congress. That's almost as bad as Fox, surely?

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