Do Hybrid Owners Prefer Obama?

After a Hillary Clinton supporter referred to Barack Obama supporters as “latte-drinking, Prius-driving, Birkenstock-wearing, trust fund babies,” Ethan, from Urbanspoon.com, wondered whether there was actually a statistical correlation between a voter’s tastes in cars, footwear and caffeinated beverages, and their taste in Democratic Presidential candidates. With no direct data available on the subject, Ethan decided to look at the per capita numbers of Starbucks locations, hybrid car owners, and Birkenstock buyers in each state to see whether it correlated to results in the Democratic primaries.

So are hybrid car owners actually more likely to vote for Obama? Not according to this measure. Ethan found no statistically significant correlation between hybrid ownership and the percentage of Obama voters in each state. That doesn’t mean for sure that hybrid drivers don’t support Obama more, but if they do it’s going to require some more exacting research to determine it. Interestingly enough, there was a correlation between the number of Obama supporters and number of Starbucks franchises in each state.


  • uktiger

    This one does.

  • TSBinLV

    Me too.

  • nitewatchman

    I would vote for Obama to keep the other two out!

  • javajay

    I’m a proud Latte drinking, Birkenstock wearing, hybrid driver that supports Obama. (I don’t have a trust fund, I have to work to support my habits)

  • VaPrius

    Well, we know it does make sense. Prius drivers are known to make more money, have better education, be smarter, better looking, better in bed, more likely to find money in the street, less likely to stub their toes while getting up in the night to pee, and less likely to get a hangover.

  • babu flubber

    I haven’t yet bought my first hybrid, but I’ll take care of that right after we swear in President Obama…

  • Anonymous

    I’m a member of the armed forces a republican and can’t stand any of the candidates ! I support plug in electric hybrids to wean the US off of oil all together. I don’t care what they SAY ‘the war on terror, nation building” or any of that. It’s $$$$. the longer it takes to get plug-ins to market the more American soldiers die for barrels of oil. If the tension in the middle east is about control of energy, remove oil from the equation. then you’ll see how fast we get out of there and the US economy boom to new highs manufacturing new technologies to support a new automotive industry. Not to get political but I’m voting for Ron Paul. see http://www.ronpaul2008.com

  • Ross Nicholson

    Oh, I think Hillary’s already got this one wrapped up. She’s just waiting for the voting to be over to make it official.

  • CivicHybrid

    As a 2006 Civic Hybrid owner, I feel I must stand up and be counted. I don’t own Birkenstock and can’t stand Lattes and a republican. So I don’t fit the “norm” of this group, but will be voting for a Democrat this fall.

  • Dave K.

    Prius and EV driver, voted for Hillary in the primary. Her energy policy is slightly more aggressive than Obama’s. Though I have in the past you couldn’t make me vote Republican this time.
    No Birkinstocks or trust fund, does expresso count? why ruin good coffee with milk?

  • Gerald Shields

    I don’t own a hybrid, yet I’m down with Obama too.

  • Katy

    I am a Prius owner that voted for Obama in the primary. I do not drink lattes, wear Birkenstocks, or have a trust fund.

  • Hal Howell

    No way would I vote for a racist and possible Muslim in “Christian” clothing. Furthermore, he and his wife are Marxist socialists. There’s no way he should be President! All of you wanting to vote for him need to go back and rediscover what this country was established as and what it means to be an American! JFK was right when he said “Ask NOT what your country can do for you BUT what you can do for your country.” Obama and Clinton both reverse that. That is just unAmerican! Its Socialism!
    Furthermore, if the Iraq war has been for oil, then where is it??? How stupid to think this is about oil! It’s about preventing another 9/11!!!
    We have more oil to drill than we thought, assuming the idiots in DC don’t stop us from getting it. Those idiots are liberals! They talk about conserving and stupid ethanol bit what we need is the oil that’s in our own backyard.

  • American

    Hal,
    I totally agree with your first paragraph, well stated.

  • Anonymous

    Hi Hal, why do you say Senator Obama is a Marxist? Is it because Obama steals ideas from Marx? He steals from everybody. Sure Marx thought folks cling to religion because it relieved their suffering by giving them an illusion of a better life in the life to come, but Obama changed it enough, they cling to religion because they are bitter, so you really can’t make the charge stick, no matter if it is true.

  • JH

    Hey HAL FOXwell – way to run down the numerous erroneous fox smear errr talking points on Obama. I would highly suggest checking some of your facts:

    ** Iraq war about stopping another 9/11 – no its not – the man who sponsored 9/11 (Osama bin Laden in case you’ve forgotten) is still lose in the Afghanistan/Pakistan area of the world = meanwhile Sadam used to execute taliban members whom he captured in his country.

    ** Racist – by definition means to want to remove/suppress/limit those of other races – Obama’s message has been pretty much about inclusion and bringing fracture pieces back into a whole (yes very simplistic summary).

    ** Muslim – his dad was a Muslim his mom was from Kansas – used to live in Kansas – not a hotbed of the Muslim religion. Plus he’s been a practicing member of a Christian church his entire adult life

    ** Socialists – that’s just a laugher – check out their individual platforms. Uplifting the down-trodden is not socialist behavior it is right and decent behavior. (I believe some would even say it is the Christian thing to do).

    ** More oil to drill? Where? The arctic? Alaska – if ANWR is tapped then the resulting output is enough to cut into 1/15th of the supply needed and would run out in an estimated 30-40 years – including the 10 years it would take to get it fully functional and factoring in transportation costs ANWR is only feasible if the price of oil jumps to somewhere in the $400/barrel range and then only as a short term solution.

    ** What we need is oil?? Quite possibly the wrongest thing you’ve stated here – what is needed most is a way to get off of OIL as a source of energy. We need to develop alternative sources of energy – get rid of the internal combustion engine and become the world leader in clean energy patents and production. If not here are some of the potential pitfalls:
    **** Unending wars in the middle east for scarcer resources
    **** An increase in global warming that becomes irreversible with a major climate shift
    **** we become the slave to CHINA and other countries that can bail us out
    **** The US becomes an also ran in world politics – stuffed down somewhere below France in world importance as our population gets fatter, lazier, less educated, more consumer driven – just keep giving us bread and circuses and we will gladly chug along and not care about anyone else
    **** Such a fractured government that it is paralyzed to take any meaningful action – stagnating both change and progress on any front.

    No HAL – back in 2001 W had every opportunity to stand up and proclaim: “FROM THIS DAY FORWARD THE US WILL SEEK TO GET OFF OF OIL, BECOME THE COUNTRY WHICH HUNTS DOWN TERRORISTS AND UPLIFTS THOSE WHO NEED OUR HELP.”

    thus fulfilling the legacy left to us by the World War 2 generation – RIGHTEOUS WARFARE & COMMITTED SACRIFICE.

    Nope – instead he told us to go out and spend more ……. we need to begin to conserve and refocus our internal energies and move forward as a whole -NOT- spend time making up issues to slander politicians.

    FYI – I am uncommitted as of this date for who will earn my vote for president.

  • sean

    JH, totally agree with you.
    The world is too greedy now.

  • Anonymous

    Of course Obama is a racist, black culture is racist by definition. He speaks of “typical white women” as if they were racist, but he is the one using a class distinction. Whites vote for blacks rather than whites, showing a lack of racist behavior, but blacks vote for blacks rather than whites 9 to 1 so again the objective evidence is inescapable.

    So it seems a majority of Americans actually want the country to move more toward socialism which is sad. I drove by brother to the county hospital emergency room a few weeks ago, and was surprised that the wait was over 8 hours. If Americans knew what they were voting for, they might change their vote. I can only hope.

  • MJ

    I am a future hybrid driver who will be voting for Obama on Tuesday in the great state of Pennsylvania. I think Obama steals PA and thus ending the election…

  • Jeff

    I own a Prius, I am the son of a Military Officer and have spent my life in places like Japan (1960′s), Philippines, Guam, Germany, England and all over the US. I have been abducted off of the streets of Okinawa and safely returned to my family. I have been in the minority and felt the impact. I will vote for Obama because he is willing to take the right road. Public Service is the core of his message. Acknowledging that an American life is no more or less valuable than an Iraqi or Sudanese life. Admitting we are not perfect and focusing on correcting social imbalance. Hard core Republicans cannot stand most of this other than to give lip service to the Public Service portion. Obama is ready to do the really hard work Bush avoided by saying he was working hard. We know we can slaughter everyone on the face of this planet but where would that put us? In hell. The hard part is figuring out a way to live on this planet. It will take solutions to population growth and recourse management. Obama is the only candidate that gets it. He is far from perfect but way closer than anyone else. The terrorist message used by Bush and the rest of the war hawks says that if we do not stop the terrorists overseas they will soon be in our country and we will be fighting a war on our own soil. Heaven help anyone who tries to begin a true war in the US. I and everyone I know will be making roadside bombs and developing far more cleaver ways to kill with house hold items than have even been thought of in Iraq. Pulling out of Iraq will not be pretty but neither will staying there. It is a loose loose situation. Ron Paul is an isolationist just like Bush started out being. It does not work to close the boarders and ignore the world. We are a global society we need to help make it all work not just for the US.

    So I will keep driving my Prius until it falls apart in 200,000 miles and us my Ford F-150 to pull my boat and horse trailer and vote for OBAMA.

  • Joe

    Vote either one of them and your voting for Communism. Funny Russia is getting more democratic and were going toward communism!

  • Joe

    Hussein Barack Obama, Louis Farakhan, Reverend Wright, Ayers. All birds of the same feather and they stick together! Mrs. Obama feels in 2008 the America is a mean place and she has never been proud of her country. Obama is bitter with small town people their religion and guns. Obama’s are both lawyers and all lawyers lie right Bill Clinton! Mrs. Obama feels oppressed, but their millionaires and she went two Ivey League schools. The Veil of Obama has been exposed.

  • Anonymous

    I wonder what the relevance is of which of the democratic candidates Hybrid owners lean towards, when democrats are a minority among Hybrid drivers anyway.

  • uktiger

    “Funny Russia is getting more democratic and were going toward communism!” Joe

    If you think like Hal and Joe, crawl back in your hole. Russia is getting more democratic??? Exactly what kind of democratic are they getting? Joe, do you like WalMart?

    Obama is the only one who can save this country from the stupid people.

  • t. wray

    I am buying my first hybrid because it is the right thing to do for the world, and that is the same reason I am voting for obama. I drink lattes and wore berkinstocks for some time although I do not anymore. I think the ignorant comments about blacks being racist could not be further from the truth. While many blacks are voting for Obama is is unfair to say that doing so is racist for two reasons. One, Obama is the best canidate by far. Hillary is a robot who can be bought either way by the very people from whom we are trying to get change from..ie big business and corrupt government, and McCain…Please…are you joking…he is turning Republicians Democratic…enough said. Second, the black race has been oppressed for so long that for them to finally get a viable candidate for the first time would do so much for the race as a whole that it really superseeds anything else. Now that is not racist, because it is not repressing any other race…It is more for the advancment of another race that is generally stifled and looked down upon. How many black jokes have you heard while sitting around with your buddies. I have heard many, and it is really an embarrassment to OUR race to talk like that about another race. That is racist, not a black person wanting his race to be seen as what they are…equal…instead of how they are dipicted on TV. Now some black people are like that, but I know a good many who are not. If we were all depicted by the white trash that is on Jerry Springer we would want a educated white person to stand up for teh rest of us too. Right? I thought so. Get ahold of yourself people and open up your minds from the little boxez you place yourselves in. GO Obama!!!!!

  • Boom Boom

    Say the word Obama and all the idiots come out of the woodwork. Gj Hal and Joe. I sure you managed to convince everybody here that Obama is a racist, muslim communist who kills puppies just for fun. Keep on drinkin’ that Kool-aid, perhaps eventually your spiritual leader will get arsenic in there.

    One more hybrid driver for Obama. But, I own no birkenstocks and I’m more of a mocha guy that a latte. (Perhaps that is worse…) And, alas, no trust fund. Trust funds are a GW Bush thing, not a hybrid thing.

  • Pahadi1

    Reading down the column of comments, I noticed about half-way down, any thinking about Prius automobiles, let along lattes and Birkenstocks, etc. , ended. The levity in the conversation evanesced. Suddenly, it seemed so . . . what was that word? “Bitter,” I think it was. Just frothing over with bitterness, hatred, and bigotry, conflating things like “socialism,” “muslim,” “communism,” and so on. Not very coherent, except for that broad thread of bitterness. Maybe Obama wasn’t far off the mark afterall.

    I think I’ll wait for a “plug-in,” and rather than latte, I prefer the Nepali chea my loving wife makes me or the bottom-of-the-barrel office coffee I get at work for a quarter. Don’t got no trust fund.

  • steved28

    I consider myself pretty “middle of the road” (not when I’m driving my hybrid). I try and listen to both sides. I’m a registered republican, but I haven’t voted for George W in either election.

    The strongest argument for Obama in this thread comes from Hal. If someone that ignorant is against him, he must be the best candidate. And when I say ignorant I don’t mean it in the meanest of ways, I mean ignorant of facts. All the speeches I saw by George W before the war said that Iraq was about WMD. Haven’t heard that term thrown around in a while. The war going on between the Shiites and Sunis was never going to reach our shores BTW. Saddam kept a thumb on them (right or wrong). We opened Pandora’s box. It had absolutely nothing to do with 9/11, never did, never will.

  • Thayer

    We’re both US Army 30 year retires. We’ve owned a Prius since the Fall of ’03. We live in a small town in Wyoming, no trust fund, only retirement we earned. To quote a well known columnist, “Clinton is a lier and Obama is a lie”. He hasn’t done anything positive in the senate and did very little in the Illinois legislature. He has associated with rabel rousers and the extreme left all his life. It’s all about energy independence.

  • Joe Reyes

    Well, I own a Flex-Fuel right now because that’s all I can afford and I always fill it up with E85 (which is still under $3 a gallon) and I am an avid Obama supporter. Just wish I could afford a Hybrid…

  • RandalH

    People have always selected cars based on a certain degree of vanity, and the Prius is no different. Car salesmen and advertising appeal to how we look in a car or what image it projects and says about us. At one point in time it was the Cadillac for some socio-eoconomic classes or the Dodge Charger for others. Today, it’s the Prius for those who want to project the “smart” and “I care about the world” image that some have even mentioned in posts above. In a lot of ways, Obama is THE candidate for those same people. They proudly claim that Obama is their guy because it projects a certain image. They feel that they are “post racial”, “smart”, “caring” people for voting for him. Obama is the perfect blank slate for these people, upon which they can project their self images. Little is really know about him, and in many ways, the less known the better, as the voter’s self image can be projected without distortion from reality.

  • uktiger

    Randal you are a condescending jerk.

    Maybe we buy the Prius because it is the best car on the road, not because of how it makes us feel.

    Maybe we vote for Obama because he is the best man for the job.

  • Boom Boom

    Randal,
    All vehicles have an image, that is true, but you fail to mention the indisputable fact that the Prius (and other hybrids) save gas and reduce emissions. It is more than just an image. This is reality.

    The same would be true for Obama if he was a 50 year old white guy pretending to be a multi-racial candidate. The fact is, he is not white and that isn’t a distortion of reality. McCain and Clinton represent more of the same repub/demo strategies that got us into our current situation. GW Bush was the same inexperienced, blank slate that Obama is. Though I loathe him, I must admit that he furthered the right -wing agenda quite effectively over his presidency. My only hope is that Obama can do the same back the other way in 8 years. We certainly need it.

    I think you need to check in with reality.

  • Neil

    This story is only marginally appropriate for hybridcars.com.

    The last thing the environmental movement needs is to become tied to the hip with one party or candidate vs. another. The environmental issues we face should transcend politics. Unfortunately many Americans see the environmental movement as political rather than scientific in nature. Ironically this is because Al Gore has championed the latest round of environmentalism. I am glad Al Gore is doing what he does and is staying out of politics – it makes his motives less suspect for his detractors and skeptics.

    This specific story tries to dispel the notion that hybrid drivers support one candidate or another, but we also have to question if it is important enough to spend our time discussing. Like most political issues, this is probably an example of “emotional bread and circuses” to distract from tougher issues.

    Let’s move on to more important topics, please.

  • uktiger

    One of Dr. King’s strengths was that he stressed that civil rights was NOT a political issue. It was an issue of right and wrong.

    Environmentalism is the same.

  • Shines

    No way would I vote for a racist and possible Muslim in “Christian” clothing.

    Sounds like a statement from a Nazi in American clothing.

  • RandalH

    Actually, Obama is proving himself to be the condescending jerk. You would have no way of knowing if he’s the best man for the job because he’s never accomplished anything, publicly or privately. As I said, and has been proven over and over again by the fact that even his supporters can’t name an accomplishment, voting for Obama reflects what you would like to believe about yourself. And as is becoming increasingly apparent, the less he says the better the reflection. When he gets beyond “change” and away from the teleprompter, he starts putting his foot in his mouth.

    If the Prius is the best car on the road, then I will take that into consideration the next time I buy a car. However, to really make a dent in fuel usage, the best options are to take mass transit (generally unavailable to me) or work from home (which I do increasingly).

  • GR

    So Hal, are you saying you’re NOT voting for Obama? :-)

    Haha, this board is like flipping back and forth between Fox and CNN or MSNBC.

    Trust fund? What’s a trust fund? I do find lattes pretty tasty though…but don’t drink them too often.

    I’m not a hybrid owner…but I hope to buy a plug-in one day.

    Wanting Universal Healthcare because you care about the health of a nation comprised of over 250 million people isn’t Socialism and/or Communism. It’s common sense. This will create more jobs in the healthcare industry as a result and hopefully alleviate many of the problems in that industry.

    Both Obama and Hillary have really good plans for the environment and energy independence. McCain’s plan is a little better than Bush’s, but still not as aggressive as it needs to be.

    Black people voted for white presidents their whole life. Now that blacks are excited about voting for a black president doesn’t make them racist. He is just a good leader who happens to be black. (Or mixed if you prefer.)

    When Obama was talking about typical white women he was talking about his grandmother who was born and raised in segregation…not white women today.

    If you want to know about the accomplishments of the presidential candidates Randal, visit their websites, don’t wait for Fox news to tell you. It’s not that hard.

    Solar energy, wind farms, energy independence. It’s all intertwined with creating jobs, stimulating the economy, pulling out of Iraq, etc. This topic of voting for a president is important because it is intertwined with all of these topics as well.

    I’m black, and I voted for Bush in ’04 because I felt he may have ended up finding WMD’s in Iraq or he would pull us out of that war. He didn’t do either so it’s time for a change.

    OBAMA ’08

  • splashy

    Don’t own a Prius because it just doesn’t have enough room for my spouse’s paintings. Wish there were a hybrid van… we’re thinking about getting a diesel so we can burn veggie oil.

    Support Clinton because of her health care plan that has everyone involved.

    Can’t wear Birkenstocks because my feet are too wide.

    Don’t drink lattes – drink tea instead. Coffee doesn’t agree with me very well.

    So, don’t fit any mold.

    Oh, and what about Obama voting for the Cheney energy bill? How does that square with the folks driving Priuses? Or, do they let that slide, which is fine with me.

  • tomslyck

    Highlander Hybrid owner. I’m not voting for the female lawyer married to a male lawyer, nor the male lawyer married to a female lawyer. I’m voting for the war hero married to a beer distributor.

  • MR in LA

    * I believe Obama is the best candidate still in the race.
    * I prefer cappuccinos to lattes (that much warm milk make me sleepy).
    * I haven’t worn Birkenstocks since my Weimaraner ate the straps off of them
    roughly nine years ago.
    * My parents only established a trust after they retired when I was thirty-five years
    old. I won’t touch it until they have passed which I hope is many, many years from now.
    * I own a Prius but my wife is the primary driver and she’s still on the fence about the
    whole Obama v Clinton thing.

  • Sonic

    tomslyck says:
    “I’m voting for the war hero”

    Didn’t he get captured by the enemy and then tortured for countless years? By your low standards everyone at GitMo is a “war hero”

    Cool labels Tom! Probably a lot easier to choose who to vote for by applying simplistic labels to each of them than actually analyzing any of their policy decisions in the past or pledges for the future.

  • Team Acura Parts Blog

    Hey nice article you have here. Can i have this reposted at Team Acura Parts Blog? I’ll credit this site. Thanks.

    -John

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