This idiotic “oath” of one’s Democratic faithfulness will keep moderates and independents away, which will hurt John Edwards, and it will keep overall turnout down–also a negative for Edwards, who is clearly the most popular candidate.
However, it remains to be seen how black voters will react. On the one hand, they are overwhelmingly Democratic, so the partisanship shouldn’t matter. On the other hand, many black voters remember so-called “literacy tests” and poll taxes and ballot challenges of the pre-Civil Rights era.
As a Republican running campaigns in SC, I was told that merely requesting increased police presence at polling places was racist, because black voters were easily intimidated by such measures. How are these suspicious black voters going to respond when they’re asked to sign the Democratic loyalty pledge? I suspect it will raise cries of “The Man!” from Al Sharpton’s HQ.
If not, it probably should.