According to recent polls of registered voters, Senator Barack Obama appears to be solidifying an impressive lead over his rival, Senator John McCain. But, what about the coffee and custard vote? The results are still coming in, but there appears to be a strong turnout for Obama for patrons of 7-Eleven stores and the Culver's Custard ice cream chain.
7-Eleven's "7-Election" is tracking customers who chose a blue coffee cup for Obama vs. a red coffee cup for McCain. The latest results are a landslide for the Democrat: 60% for Obama and 40% for McCain. But, before Democrats get too giddy, bear in mind that the map (above) skews towards traditionally blue coastal states and leaves out much of the Mid-West and South. And while the numbers look very good for Obama, they most likely do not reflect one of Governor Sarah Palin's key consitituencies, "Joe Sixpacks" who would presumably be shopping at 7-Eleven for beer, not coffee.
Culver's Custard has crowned "Heath Toffeebits," the Democratic candidate, the winner of the "popular vote" in its "Custard Election," with 51 percent of the 103,000 total votes cast online. In-store purcases of the two custards (so-called "electoral college") votes went to "Reese E. Buttercup," the Republican sundae candidate, which out-sold the Democrat for a total of 53 percent of the 70,700 total votes. The map, detailing the distribution of online votes across (the heavily Mid-Western and Southern) states where Culver's operates, shows that the Democratic candidate made important inroads in battleground states Colorado and Michigan.
Do these fake polls/publicity stunts tell us anything relevant about the real election? Probably not. But, then again, 7-Eleven customers did get the result right in 2000 and 2004.