As McCain Wins, a Look at Exit Polling

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So the Republican race has been called for McCain, according to the networks.

Let’s look at some exit polling. The Democratic voters in New Hampshire today were 51% registered Democrats, 42% registered Independents. Barack Obama took 43% of the Independents, and Hillary Clinton took 34%. Amongst registered Democrats, those numbers are exactly reversed. (John Edwards takes 16% on each.)

Voters under 30 were 17% of Democratic voters. Voters 50 and older were 46% of voters. The greybeards favor Clinton. Generally speaking, Obama won voters under 40 and Clinton won voters over 40. John Edwards did not do well with either.

62% of Democrats said they are “angry” with the Bush Administration. An additional 30% said they are “dissatisfied, but not angry.” 7% said they are “satisfied” with or “enthusiastic” about the Bush Administration. Who, exactly, are those 7%?

86% characterized the economy as “not so good” or “poor.” 38% identified the economy as the most important issues in the election. 31% said the war in Iraq, and 27% said health care. I’ll bet those priorities are different for GOP voters.

37% said that if Bill Clinton were eligible for a 3rd term, they would vote for him. That includes 57% of all Hillary supporters.

After the jump, the Republican voters….

61% of Republican voters are registered Republicans. 34% identified as registered Independents. John McCain beat Mitt Romney by at least 6% in BOTH categories. McCain will have to prove that he can repeat this performance amongst committed Republicans in upcoming primary states, where independents are far less important.

Half of Republicans said they were “dissatisfied” or “angry” with the Bush Administration, which portends good things for the Democrats in the general.

Over 50% of Republican voters today said they attend church services “a few times a year” or “never.” This ain’t Iowa. This ain’t Huckabee territory.

About a quarter of voters in the GOP primary called themselves evangelical or born-again Christians. This group split evenly for Huckabee and McCain. Three-quarters of voters aid they were not evangelical or born-again. Huckabee took only 7% of the non-evangelical vote.

52% of Republicans say the economy’s condition is “not so good” or “poor,” which means that members of both parties thinking we’re in the dumps.

43% of Republican voters cite the war in Iraq or terrorism as the number one issue. 30% said the economy and 23% said illegal immigration. Amongst voters that value national security issues, McCain crushed all competitors. Romney took immigration voters.

DOES IT FEEL LIKE POLITICS IS AT A BREAKING POINT?

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It sure feels that way to me, and here at Mother Jones, we’ve been thinking a lot about what journalism needs to do differently, and how we can have the biggest impact.

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Clara Jeffery, Editor-in-Chief

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