In the ongoing "ohmygoddddditsbadforthedemocrats" media coverage of, well, everything the bloggosphere has been debating the actual effect of the extended primary on actual voters. Well today the Boston Globe ran an actual story about Indiana and it turns out that the actual news is, actually, good.
The interest in the Clinton-Obama fight, they say, is helping to shift political identities. Thousands of people are signing up as new voters - 383,954 Hoosiers have registered since the 2006 election - while some people who have always voted Republican are deciding that they might just be comfortable casting a ballot for a Democrat.
While national Democratic leaders worry that the protracted campaign could damage their eventual nominee, local Democrats say that the primary race may be the best thing to happen to the party in years.
FORT WAYNE, INDIANA - Throughout her life, Linda Eggert, a 51-year-old stay-at-home mother, has been a staunch Republican. But on May 6, when the marathon Democratic primary comes to Indiana, Eggert will cast her ballot for Hillary Clinton.The article makes it clear that this is an across the board movement--that is, they interviewed several ordinary Republicans and some high value public leader type Republicans. Its clear that the extended primary and the exciting quality of the two candidates is making people talk about politics and the future in a way which simply wouldn't have been possible without the added stimulus of a primary that, in some sense, seems to "count."
"Everybody is kind of rethinking their politics because of everything that is going on," Eggert said, citing her growing concerns about Iraq and the economy. She added, "Do I think [Indiana] could go Democrat for once in November? I hope it could."