He’s currently leading in the polls, but many have speculated that Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama has a chance of suffering the same fate as Tom Bradley, an African American man who ran for the California governor’s position in 1982, but lost despite showing a lead in polls by a wide margin.
In this case, the race of Bradley was a factor, and some expressed their likelihood to vote for him early on, but chose his white opponent when casting their ballot. Behind the Bradley Effect, also referred to as the Wilder Effect, is the theory of social desirability bias, or the tendency of those polled to provide responses that would be well received by others, which in this case refers to providing inaccurate responses due to fear of criticism of their true racial preference.
As reported by CNN political analysts, race matters for the current election year have likely already surfaced in polling results. Others have speculated that the polls may not be a true reflection of what’s to come November 4, 2008 due to race relations remaining a prominent issue in this country. Michelle Obama, the wife of the Democratic presidential candidate, has expressed views that the progression of the state of America will generally lead voters to focus more on issues than race.
Tiffany Cherry WiredPRNews.com Staff Reporter