Lifelong Democrat Kathleen Cowley watches with disdain as huge crowds hang on Sen. Barack Obama's every word. She dismisses Obama's "intolerable logic." She turns the channel on pundits who chalk up Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton's primary victories to little more than racism. And she doesn't much care for the notion that while Obama is fresh and inspiring, Clinton is, by implication, old and mean.
This, in particular, is telling:
And many among the legions of young voters who have flocked to Obama say their enthusiasm is more about him than about the Democratic Party and it would not necessarily transfer to Clinton if she won the nomination. In Indiana, about six in 10 Obama voters under age 30 said they will be dissatisfied if Clinton is the nominee and about half said the same in North Carolina, according to exit polls.
Nationally, about a quarter of Clinton supporters in a Washington Post-ABC News poll said that if she loses they will ditch the Democratic Party and Obama for Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.). A similar number of Obama backers said they will pick the Republican this fall if Clinton becomes the nominee. In both Indiana and North Carolina, majorities of African American voters said they will be unhappy if Clinton is at the top of the ticket.
Of course what they say now may not mean a thing come November. It's going to be a long, interesting summer.