Tuesday, September 07, 2004


Montgomery County as a microcosm

Bill Sloat at the PD seems to me to have gotten it about right in a piece on the political situation in the Dayton area: economically hard hit in the last four years, but a surprisingly stable politically with a pretty even Democrat/Republican split.

Also concerning the same region, Benjamin Kline, a reporter with the Dayton Daily News did a very interesting piece that follows up on a local woman who was featured in what was a groundbreaking book from 1970, "The Real Majority," by political demographers Richard Scammon and Ben Wattenberg.

The book focused on Bette Jane Lowrey, the wife of a machinist, whom Scammon and Wattenberg identified as THE "average American voter." The DDN went back to catch up with Lowrey.

Kline reports that Lowery, now 80, still likes to speak out:

"This year's politics? 'I'm sick of it,' Lowrey said. 'They're slamming, badmouthing each other. I'm not going to vote for anybody who does that. What they're saying about Kerry and his war record and that he didn't tell the truth, I just don't buy that.'"

"She admits not paying close attention at the time to the Vietnam War, 'it seemed so far away,' but opposes today's war in Iraq. In the '70s, she said, the Watergate scandal upset her less than the steep food and gasoline prices."

"Regarding Iraq: 'Everybody's gonna be hurt one way or another, especially the people they are shooting at. I don't like it. I don't think we should be there. Thank God none of my grandchildren is in the military.'"

Lowrey might suggest some good news for Kerry.


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