No, Obama Probably Wouldn’t Have Beaten Trump

And it’s bad for the Democratic Party for him to say so.

Obamacare looms large, despite the fact that it is one of the most tangible benefits Obama delivered to working-class Americans, regardless of race. Yet the reaction to the program was undoubtedly tinged with racism.

.. many “Americans thought blacks would benefit more than whites.”

.. Obama really turned [one voter] off when, after a vigilante killed a black teenager named Trayvon Martin, he said the boy could have been his son. She felt as if Obama was choosing a side in the racial divide, stirring up tensions.”

.. one who had “grown somewhat disenchanted” with Obama after supporting him, then “talked about how much the Black Lives Matter protests against shootings by police officers grated on him” and lamented, “If I say anything about that, I’m a racist.”

.. “Does the country’s criminal justice system treat all fairly or treat blacks unfairly?” Seventy-two percent of those saying blacks are treated unfairly were Clinton voters, while 73 percent of those saying blacks are treated as fairly as everyone else were Trump voters.

.. many whites had stopped viewing Obama as “post-racial” and tagged him, however unfairly, as the source of racial tension.

.. “The biggest drop that I had in my poll numbers in my first six months had nothing to do with the economy. It was ‘the beer summit.’ Among white voters, my poll numbers dropped, like, I don’t know, ten per cent or something. If you don’t stick your landing in talking about racial issues, particularly when it pertains to the criminal-justice system, then people just shut down. They don’t listen.”

.. It forces us to acknowledge that the symbolic nature of Obama’s victory, however powerful it may be in shaping future generations, was not enough to heal past wounds. And it reminds the Democratic Party that the challenge of winning back working-class whites, many of whom still seethe with racial resentment