Will it Play in Peoria?

Legend has it Richard Nixon would ask “Will it play in Peoria?” when he was determining if something had national appeal. Well, it looks like John McCain played pretty well in Peoria tonight.

Illinois Republican Electoral Map (New York Times)

Illinois Republican Electoral Map

On a more serious note, I wrote in my Huffington Post column that downstate Illinois would be an important test for Barack Obama.

“It’ll also be interesting to see how Obama performs downstate, which Salon‘s Edward McClelland has noted has a ‘history of working out racial questions for the rest of the country.’ The region produced the two men most responsible for ending slavery in Abraham Lincoln and U. S. Grant. But one hundred years after the Civil War, racial strife tore apart the town of Cairo, and in 2004, Obama ran second in the Democratic primary downstate.”

Looks like Obama ran second in 14 counties downstate again. I don’t think it’s Earth-shattering, but I do think it’s very telling.

Illinois Democratic Electoral Map (New York Times)

Illinois Democratic Electoral Map

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One response to “Will it Play in Peoria?

  1. “The region produced the two men most responsible for ending slavery in Abraham Lincoln and U. S. Grant.”

    Lincoln was from Sangamon county, which Obama won with 72%. Grant was from Galena in Jo Daviess County, which Obama won with 66%. Incidentally, Sangamon has an African-American population of just under 10%; Jo Daviess has an African-American population of 0.2% (zero-point-two percent).

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