During a conversation on race and the 2012 election, Sullivan charged that if "Virginia and Florida go back to the Republicans," the electoral map will look "like the confederacy entirely." He added, "You put the map of the Civil War over the electoral map, you've got the Civil War."
Will disagreed. "Democrats have been losing the white vote constantly since 1964, so that's not new," he said.
He then added that there were two ways to explain the discrepancy in caucasian individuals who voted for [President] Obama in 2008, but not again in 2012.
One explanation, Will said, was that "a lot of white people who voted for Obama in 2008 watched him govern for four years and said, 'Not so good, let's try somebody else.'" He then described the alternative explanation, and dubbed Sullivan's statement the "confederacy hypothesis...those people somehow for some reason in the last four years became racist."
"No, that's not my argument at all, George," Sullivan said. "I'm just pointing out the fact that the white people who've changed their minds happen to be in Virginia and Florida. And if you actually look at the map—"
"But that is not true," Will interrupted. Sullivan attempted to continue but Will said, "Andrew has made an empirical statement that is checkable and false, which is that the people moving, or the white people moving away are in those two states."
In recent weeks, Sullivan grew worried about Obama's prospects for re-election. After the president's poor debate performance during the first forum, and Romney's surge in the polls, Sullivan declared that the Republican presidential nominee was "kicking the president's ass."