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News Flash: ballplayers are somewhat conservative

Oct 10, 2012, 11:03 AM EDT

Donkey Elephant

I am shocked, SHOCKED that a pool of poll respondees who are overwhelmingly wealthy and who tend to hail from the south and rural areas skews conservative. But, as Dustin Parkes gleans from a recent ESPN the Magazine survey, ballplayers do in fact swing that way.

In other news, I don’t care if a ballplayer on the team I root for is a communist, an anarchist, a card carrying Whig or a member of The Rent is Too Damn High Party as long as he can mash taters and/or strike dudes the hell out, as is appropriate.

  1. Kevin Gillman - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:06 AM

    I still can’t figure out why most actors are Democrats, when historically, Democrats tax them more. But, whatever.

    • tfbuckfutter - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:20 AM

      Weird that some people care about things other than making sure every last penny possible ends up in their pocket.

      • mightymike1250 - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:32 AM

        As opposed to the government’s pocket.

      • atom55 - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:47 AM

        Umm…the government’s pocket is kind of everyone’s pocket…what with it being a democracy and all.

    • stlouis1baseball - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:32 AM

      Great point Kevin. The 12 thumbs downs are from folks who can’t handle the truth.
      But back to your point…
      It is my experience that people involved in the Arts (such as Actors, Painters, Musicians),
      people who are involved in Public Instruction (be it Elementary, High School, College), people who are employed by local, state and/or federal Government…tend to lean to the left.
      I can’t necessarily fault them for this. After all…who butters their bread?

      • 18thstreet - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:42 AM

        Defense contractors are as dependent on the government as any public sector bureaucrat, and generally vote Republican.

        Next theory, please.

      • chill1184 - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:44 AM


        Liberals love the military-industrial complex as well as long as their stooge is in charge as opposed to the conservative stooge.

      • 18thstreet - Oct 10, 2012 at 12:29 PM

        No we don’t.

      • historiophiliac - Oct 10, 2012 at 1:30 PM

        Or, it could be, Woodpecker, that people with certain outlooks tend to self-select to certain fields. BTW, you generally don’t get rich in government service. I was a state employee for years. It’s tough — but I did it because the job meant something to me. Let me tell you, my day old bread was very thinly buttered. I stuck in there in spite of it.

    • 18thstreet - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:41 AM

      Most of them spent time as waiters before hitting it big. I think that has something to do with it.

      Working for minimum wage sticks with you.

      • stlouis1baseball - Oct 10, 2012 at 12:00 PM

        Look. I have no problems at least considering other avenues of thought. It actually helps me better understand where the other is coming from…appreciate their perspective if you will.
        You have an example of Defense Contractors leaning to the right. Good job.
        However, we both know my examples were (for the most part)…dead on.
        If you honestly don’t agree…that is very naive.
        Again…it’s all about who butters your bread.
        For this very reason…small business owners tend to lean to the right.
        Nothing wrong with either. It’s all about your best interest (i.e. who butters your bread).

      • 18thstreet - Oct 10, 2012 at 12:04 PM

        I think that’s cynical and simplistic. There are many reasons why people vote the way they do.

      • stlouis1baseball - Oct 10, 2012 at 12:18 PM

        “cynical and simplistic?” I will agree with you on one count. It is very simplistic.
        It’s also the real world. I know of ZERO small business owners who lean left.
        I know of ZERO (parochial) school educators who lean left.
        But I know a shit ton of public educators who lean left.

        But I will throw you a bone.
        I have a close friend who is a County Prosecutor. She is a staunch Conservative.
        Of course…I don’t know any Prosecutors who aren’t right leaning.
        I also don’t know many people in Law Enforcement in general who aren’t right leaning.

      • 18thstreet - Oct 10, 2012 at 12:27 PM

        My wife owns a small business and leans left. And then I stopped reading.

      • Lukehart80 - Oct 10, 2012 at 1:35 PM

        I think there is some level of chicken or the egg in the patterns you are seeing. While some people may adopt political views that align with what seems most beneficial to the jobs they’ve chosen, I think it’s just as like that the values people have already developed before they enter the job market lead them to particular jobs because those jobs seem aligned with their values.

      • IdahoMariner - Oct 10, 2012 at 4:00 PM

        I am a prosecutor. I “lean left.” So do many of my colleagues and former classmates, many of us working for an elected Republican (in an overwhelmingly Republican state). We do it because we find value in serving our community. Our bosses hire us because we are good at what we do, and they know that being a good prosecutor has nothing to do with politics. I am sure that many of the people who vote for a Republican prosecutor think his or her whole staff are similarly inclined, but I have yet to encounter an office that was ideologically uniform, at all. Again, because serving your community by helping to keep it safe and the process fair is not the exclusive province of either party.

        Also, in this overwhelmingly Republicanstate,I can think of at least a dozen small business owners I know personally who also lean left. Perhaps you just have a severely restricted social universe.

    • hojo20 - Oct 10, 2012 at 1:23 PM

      Because actors/actresses make money based on the perception of being “cool”. It’s not cool to be Republican.

      • historiophiliac - Oct 10, 2012 at 1:32 PM

        Chuck Norris thinks you’re uncool. ha ha

      • Kevin Gillman - Oct 10, 2012 at 1:37 PM

        So true, I hadn’t thought of that…Haha

      • bigharold - Oct 10, 2012 at 4:21 PM

        The last time Chuck Norris was cool people were buying K cars Ronad Reagan was in the White House and steroids were used mostly by the East German Womans swim team bot baseball players.

        If Chuck things you uncool then you’re way cool.

  2. DelawarePhilliesFan - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:11 AM

    Oh good, a politics post! This shall clearly result in a respectable, Jeffersonian debate

    • mrwillie - Oct 10, 2012 at 12:03 PM

      Indeed. Nothing like celebrating the best time of year of the baseball season by interjecting stupid politics where it does not belong.

      Why is that some people will find any excuse to give us their political rants when it absolutely applies to nothing with the topic at hand? I don’t know what is more ridiculous, the notion that it applies to baseball or that people give nary a single shit what their opinion is?

    • sportsdrenched - Oct 10, 2012 at 12:51 PM

      I prefer Policy Debate, you only get to BS your opponent & judge 8 minutes at a time.

  3. chill1184 - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:11 AM

    The 13.6% that can’t figure out who to vote for is the one that jumps out at me. Do you want government jackboot thug 1 or government jackboot thug 2? Granted I would love to see some of them to have actual outside the box thinking and realize that the two headed monster that is Robomney is a statist piece of shit.

  4. b7p19 - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:13 AM

    Oh Craig, No. What. Did. You. Do. And their off….!

  5. Tom Emanski - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:14 AM

    My mouse sensitivity is Too Damn High.

  6. simon94022 - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:15 AM

    Why would anyone care about this? With actors and singers, who are overwhelmingly left wing in their politics, the rule of thumb is “Shut up and Sing.”. No one wants to hear what some celebrity ignoramus thinks about politics.

    Likewise with ball players, “Shut up and play.”

    To their credit, though, pro athletes as a group are much more reticent about sharing their uninformed opinions in public than the Hollywood folks are.

    • atom55 - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:22 AM

      How dare they express their opinion on world affairs! That’s downright un-American it is!

    • duckaround - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:47 AM

      Brad Pitt said it best: “You shouldn’t speak until you know what you’re talking about. That’s why I get uncomfortable with interviews. Reporters ask me what I feel China should do about Tibet. Who cares what I think China should do? I’m a f—— actor! They hand me a script. I act. I’m here for entertainment. Basically, when you whittle everything away, I’m a grown man who puts on makeup.”

  7. elmaquino - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:16 AM

    They only surveyed 20 guys.

  8. bravesfaninbama - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:18 AM


    Your attempts at pitting one part of America against another (“rich” vs “poor”) are pathetic. Then again, you’re just taking a page from Obama’s playbook. He’s the master at pitting part of America against another, whether it be rich vs poor, black vs white, women vs men, etc… anything for a vote, I guess. Wasn’t he supposed to be “The Great Uniter”?

    • b7p19 - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:20 AM

      Haha, and it’s “bravesfaninbama” in front as we hit the first quarter pole…

    • stlouis1baseball - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:34 AM

      “The Great Uniter.” Yeah…he is bringing people together alright. Great post Bama.

    • CliffC - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:39 AM

      Ahhhh, yes, pitting Americans against each other. I think have heard something about this recently. Oh wait, I found it

      “There are 47 percent of the people who will vote for the president no matter what. All right, there are 47 percent who are with him, who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe the government has a responsibility to care for them, who believe that they are entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to you-name-it. That that’s an entitlement. And the government should give it to them. And they will vote for this president no matter what.”

      • chill1184 - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:45 AM

        The irony of that is Romneycare was the blueprint on which Obamacare was built upon. However if you really wanna go back further it was the successor to Dolecare.

      • yahmule - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:46 AM

        Divide and conquer is the oldest trick in the book. The ruling class has been using it against the working class since the beginning of civilization. It has been raised to an art form in the United States.

      • b7p19 - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:49 AM

        OOOHHH, and CliffC is catching him on the back stretch! If only “bravesfaninbama” was Hispanic, he’s have a better chance at winning this race!

      • stlouis1baseball - Oct 10, 2012 at 12:20 PM

        Yes. And he didn’t build anything. The Government did.

    • duckaround - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:49 AM

      Craig simply noted that baseball players tend to be from areas that self-identify as conservative, found this unsurprising, and then explicitly states he couldn’t care less how players politically identify themselves. Any disdain you read into his comments come from you, not from what he wrote.

    • atom55 - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:51 AM

      I won’t delve in too deeply here, as it would be utterly pointless…

      But one question: How has Obama pitted women vs. men exactly? Can you please provide an example? Cause I’m pretty sure it’s gonna be *amazing*.

      • bravesfaninbama - Oct 10, 2012 at 12:15 PM

        The Obama campaign has attempted to do so by pointing out that Romney “opposes requiring insurance coverage for contraception” and putting ads out to that effect ( ). They also used Sandra Fluke as a speaker at their national convention. Her claim to fame: she’s a 30 year-old law student who thinks the government should have to pay for her contraceptives.

        For further examples, read this:

      • IdahoMariner - Oct 10, 2012 at 4:07 PM

        And that pits women against men how…..?
        Are you really saying that by supporting something that benefits women at all (and indirectly benefits men), Obama is pitting the sexes against each other? Wow.

      • bigharold - Oct 10, 2012 at 4:34 PM

        Careful there IdahoMariner, .. that two reasoned well thought out response in one thread. I think you’ve reached you limit.

        We can’t have too much logic and reason. It mucks up the rating and raving. slow down the inane and idiotoc amoungst us.

    • El Bravo - Oct 10, 2012 at 12:18 PM

      “Your vagina is mine to control as I see fit!”
      “Give minorities all the rich, white folks’ money!”
      “Fuck the GOP, tea party, and their voters!”

      – Three commonly overlooked quotes by President Barack Obama. At least that’s how it sounds after being filtered into the uninformed ears of folks in Alabama apparently. I’m guessing you threw at least 40 beer bottles onto the field last week didn’t you? Assuming of course, you made it to ATL in your rusted out pick-up with the gun rack and confederate flag sticker.

      • stlouis1baseball - Oct 10, 2012 at 12:21 PM

        Sooo…gun racks = bad?

      • bravesfaninbama - Oct 10, 2012 at 12:28 PM

        While I recognize that many people view people from Alabama as ignorant, racist hicks, I assure you that is not the case. I live in a city (Huntsville) that has one of the highest per capita PhDs in the nation – where rocket scientists abound. Missile defense and space are the primary industries and we have the 2nd largest Research Park in the nation.

        So, before you go spouting off about the ignorance of someone from Alabama, maybe you should educate yourself and not assume anything.

        For the record, no I was not at the Ted last Friday night and I would NEVER throw anything onto the field. To shoot down another false perception of Alabamians, no I don’t drink either, so your “40 beer bottles” statement is even more ignorant.

      • El Bravo - Oct 10, 2012 at 12:42 PM

        Light attempt at humor. I bet I wasn’t far off either. Point being, the overly simplistic, aggressive commentary above is exactly what divides people in political discourse. It is all about who can shout louder. Basically, the point made by the Bama Braves fan above is ruined by his own damn post.

      • El Bravo - Oct 10, 2012 at 12:46 PM

        Fair enough, bravesfaninbama. But you do see that I used a similar tactic that you used in your comment right? I made a couple of bs assumptions and then laid them out with a big dose of vitriol. Your links are not evidence to any of the garbage you spew in your first comment whatsoever. If you want a political discussion, you can’t begin by stating a bunch of off-base things as fact and expect the discussion to be, well, a discussion.

  9. natstowngreg - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:19 AM

    Not sure what I’d do if I learned that a Nats player was a Whig. Or a Federalist, for that matter.

    • b7p19 - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:24 AM

      Laugh and hope he hits a home run?

      • natstowngreg - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:32 AM

        Works for me.

    • stlouis1baseball - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:34 AM

      What if he was a WASP?

    • deepstblu - Oct 10, 2012 at 12:16 PM

      The Nats have blatantly and cruelly excluded Whigs from the presidents’ race. LET MILLARD RUN!

    • umrguy42 - Oct 10, 2012 at 12:33 PM

      I’d ask them what President they’d like to see added to the race to spice things up, actually.

  10. Marty - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:25 AM

    One day, they’re work-a-day union guys, the next they’re rich conservative fat cats.

    Gotta respect Craig’s incosistencies. I suspect every blow hard has them.

    • Craig Calcaterra - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:29 AM

      They are empirically rich and, based on this poll, they are empirically conservative. How is that on me? And when did I ever say (a) that being rich is bad; or (b) that unions are only for the poor?

      • stlouis1baseball - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:37 AM

        While I will agree that you never emphatically stated A and/or B…
        How far fetched is it?

      • Marty - Oct 10, 2012 at 12:47 PM

        You didn’t make an argument for either, nor did I. But just as I suggested, this doesn’t prevent you from changing your interpretation of reality based on a whim.

    • chill1184 - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:39 AM

      You would be very surprised on how many union guys are either conservative or libertarian. A little known fact is that silent hatred that private sector union guys have for their public sector union cousins.

  11. shanabartels - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:26 AM

    It’s a small sample size. So I’m just going to tell myself that they only talked to Luke Scott and his closest friends. And I’ll remind myself that Jeter said on record that he’s voting for Obama so he’s not one of the scary homophobic wretches. It’s going to be okay.

    • stlouis1baseball - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:36 AM

      So…Jeter voting for Obama is a revelation? Really?

    • kopy - Oct 10, 2012 at 1:15 PM

      That’s a pretty broad brush you got there.

  12. lessthanittakes - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:27 AM

    The smaller the ball, the smarter the player.

    • El Bravo - Oct 10, 2012 at 12:20 PM

      Bonds must be a f@cking genius.

  13. lessthanittakes - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:28 AM

    Ooh … forgot to add: [hashtag]ConfirmationBias

  14. kiwicricket - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:29 AM

    From the comments:

    Ben says: 10.10.12 @ 10:17 AM EDT

    At least they aren’t football players…when asked who the greatest president ever was, someone responded: “Abolishing slavery is maybe the biggest move a president has ever made…but George Washington–that mother f#cker was gangster with some wooden teeth.”

  15. Liam - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:29 AM

    I wish they had asked Jon Jay for his opinion on the Articles of Confederation.

    • natstowngreg - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:36 AM

      Jon Jay did write a handful of The Federalist Papers, which were, in part, an argument to scrap the Articles of Confederation. Guess we know his views. Amazing guy; he can negotiate a treaty AND play center field.

  16. prospero63 - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:38 AM

    And in other news, baseball reporters are somewhat liberal.

  17. hank10 - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:38 AM

    They did a similar poll last year of NFL players and most would go with the conservative candidate, too. Pro athletes vote with their pocketbook while social issues are more personal preferences. If the Dems all of a sudden were for tax breaks for the wealthy, the players would switch their vote.

    • chill1184 - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:42 AM

      Conservatives like talking anti-tax but rarely preach it. They just like to funnel government theft money to different interests. However both liberal and conservative candidates do share the same interests in regards to where to funnel stolen (err I mean tax) money. Foreign aid/welfare, the military-industrial complex, the drug war would be some examples.

  18. b7p19 - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:46 AM

    Maybe they like Romney more than Obama because he’s “scrappy”?

  19. yahmule - Oct 10, 2012 at 11:48 AM

    The more educated you are, the more likely you are to be liberal. Athletes, as a group, are not the brightest demographic.

    • dexterismyhero - Oct 10, 2012 at 12:19 PM

      What? Did you read this before you hit the Submit button?

      Oh, nevermind, you are just telling us that you’re not very well educated.

      So what position did you play?

  20. jon3068 - Oct 10, 2012 at 12:33 PM

    I thought we had reached a consensus that strikeout pitchers were facists. Pitching to contact is the democratic way to do it.

  21. aceshigh11 - Oct 10, 2012 at 12:47 PM

    Republicans have been pretending to be the party of macho jocks for decades (John Wayne, Clint Eastwood, Ted Nugent) while generally avoiding doing anything truly macho…like joining the army and going to war.

    Thus, it’s no surprise most athletes are conservative.

    They wouldn’t wanna be associated with those sissy liberal fags, with their books and facts, right?

    Politics in America has basically turned into the worst aspects of high school.

    • bigharold - Oct 10, 2012 at 4:50 PM

      While I somewhat agree with your premise, Clint Eastwood in fact was in the Army during the Korean War. Just sayin.

    • stlouis1baseball - Oct 11, 2012 at 12:00 PM

      “Politics in America has basically turned into the worst aspects of high school.”
      Not that it matters…but THIS is something we both agree on Aces.

  22. stex52 - Oct 10, 2012 at 12:57 PM

    I am somewhat surprised, because they sure allow themselves to be represented by a kickass union. And, like actors, they spend a lot of the early part of their career poor and riding a bus.

    But then, as noted, this is a very small sample size. Include more of the journeymen and marginal AAA players and it wouldn’t surprise me if it shifted.

  23. mntreehugger - Oct 10, 2012 at 1:40 PM

    I have completely forgotten what this article was about. I keep being swayed back and forth from such poignant dialogue.

  24. serbingood - Oct 10, 2012 at 2:03 PM

    It’s nice to see that at least the baseball blog of NBC can get the GOP graphic correct. Now if someone could get this graphic over to Rachel, Chris, Al, Lawrence and the day crew over at MSNBC we could take them seriously as being The Place for Politics as we do Hardball Talk for baseball.

    The blog part of NBC works better and is more accurate than the news division. Amazing. Simply Amazing.

    • bigharold - Oct 10, 2012 at 5:12 PM

      You are aware that it’s called Hardball with Chris Mathews?????

  25. APBA Guy - Oct 10, 2012 at 2:26 PM

    75 comments and counting. This is why Craig does these posts. They are always good for a high page count.

    Our friend from Alabama should ponder this:

    If Obama is the master at pitting rich against poor, how is it that the rich possess more wealth now than they did when he took office? Indeed, as Warren Buffet said:

    “There’s class warfare, all right, but it’s my class, the rich class, that’s making war, and we’re winning.”

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