In a telephone conference call this morning, Democrat Massachusetts Senator John Kerry blames Rush Limbaugh for Barack Obama’s loss to Hillary Clinton in Indiana last night.
“Rush Limbaugh was tampering with the primary,” Kerry said “If it was not for Republicans taking Democratic ballots, he would have won,” he said of Obama.
(I’m not sure that’s true. The margin was about 18,500; Clinton only got 54% of the Republican votes, which made up 10% of the electorate. If none of those Republicans voted for either candidate, Obama would gain about 10,000. The question really is what share of Clinton’s votes were Limbaugh voters. For them to have provided the margin of victory, by my math, about 38% of all her Republican voters — that’s a lot — would have had to be voting tactically.)
Rush on his show today is playing audio tracks from Chris Matthews calling Hillary’s victory “tainted.” And, Rush is saying he has not received flowers this morning from Team Hillary.
To be a little clearer here, Limbaugh clearly had some effect. And 41% of the Republicans voting for Clinton said they’d back McCain in November — a big number that clearly included some tactically-voting Limbaugh Democrats. But they also included people like the man I quoted yesterday who considered Clinton a preferable second choice to McCain. So don’t give Rush all the credit.
ALSO: A reader points out that some Limbaugh voters are registered independents, possibly increasing the number.
Flap knows it would be hard to quantify the “Operation Chaos” vote in Indiana. The Obama campaign says Rush gave Hillary a 7 per cent bump.
Whatever, the Hillary campaign continues – and more CHAOS to come.