Amish Could Give McCain Crucial Swing-State Support

Many members of sect, concentrated in Ohio, Pa., voted Bush in '04
By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 28, 2008 3:46 PM CDT
There are about 231 Amish spread among Indiana, Pennsylvania and Ohio%u2014swing states where even the slimmest of margins could decide the election.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – With John McCain now focused on winning Ohio, Indiana and Pennsylvania, he could get help from a group that has traditionally avoided politics: the Amish. When they do vote, Amish are thought to be 100% Republican because of their views on abortion, Benjamin Sarlin writes in the Daily Beast; George W. Bush was able to mobilize the reclusive Amish vote in 2004.

There are an estimated 231,000 Amish across the three states. But Democrats say Bush’s 2004 success was a fluke, especially because the continuing Iraq war has soured many of the pacifist Amish on politics. They also note that McCain has had problems connecting with religious voters, and that registration deadlines have already passed in all three states.