Can’t Be True?

From TPM Reader PG

Josh, do you think the poll results you’re flogging right now have much merit? I mean, I’m a hardcore Obama Democrat, and I’m so disgruntled about Hillary’s tactics that if you were to ask me today, I’d say if she wins the nomination I might not vote.

But I know not voting is not an option, and in the unlikely event she manages to win, I’ll do what is in the best interests of myself and my party and vote for her. Don’t you think it’s pretty much the same with Clinton supporters? Really, how many people get behind Hilllary Clinton and then even think about voting for John McCain? Maybe Hillary is no flaming liberal, but McCain is very conservative.

We’ve gotten a number of emails like this from both sides. And basically I think the great majority of these people will come to their senses and return to the Democratic fold. Not that I think the Democratic party per se has some moral claim to anyone’s vote. But if you actually care about the issues these candidates are running on then it’s pretty hard to see where, with a few months to think it over, will vote for McCain.

How many Democrats really want to vote for a candidate committed to appointing Supreme Court Justices who will overturn Roe v. Wade and keeping US troops occupying Iraq for another generation? I think those facts and others will become far more salient as the heat of the current craziness subsides.

I also think there’s at least a decent structural argument for why Hillary supporters are more likely, for the moment, to say they’ll vote for McCain. I think everybody realizes — whatever they’d prefer — that Obama is a strong favorite for the nomination at this point. And I think the simple truth is that it’s a lot easier to be magnanimous, take the high road about party unity or simply be less mad if you’re confident that your candidate is going to win. That just strikes me as common sense.