An interesting possibility is being discussed that this might shift in this election. Perhaps the individual racist tendencies of one person will be overrun by the self-interest for that person. Yes, Obama is (half) black. But he is going to help the economy, get my son out of Iraq, help the working man, and try to improve healthcare.
Sure, they may be racist, but at some point self-interest may override the racism.
An article over at Salon recently referenced a canvassers experience:
A man canvassing for Obama in western Pennsylvania asks a housewife which candidate she intends to vote for. She yells to her husband to find out. From the interior of the house, he calls back, "We're voting for the nigger!" At which point the housewife turns to the canvasser and calmly repeats her husband's declaration.
Something similar happened to Ryan this weekend when we were canvassing. Seems it may be a common trend.
You know... I am 1000% opposed to prejudice. But it does make me happy that people are beginning to look past it, if only for their own self interest.