Presidential Campaign

Presidential Campaign

The disappearing rural vote

There was a lot of talk before the elections about the rural, urban and suburban vote.
 
Michael Barone wrote that the suburbs were going to carry Romney to a landslide victory … oops, he won with 50.2 percent. No big numbers there for Mitt.
 
The rural vote was going to be huge and also propel Mitt to a win. You can see from all the maps out there how a vast number of counties went Republican, by a big sea of red. Romney did receive 59 percent of the rural vote, 5 percentage points higher than John McCain did four years ago. But what did this mean?

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Still analyzing last week's election

The Democrats banked on their 2008 coalition, and won big, bigger than big. This wasn’t just a narrow survival by a weak incumbent president, it was a nationwide blue wave, a sweep at every level, from the president down to ballot initiatives like redefining marriage and legalizing marijuana. You can’t blame Hurricane Sandy for that. The unfortunate fact is that the millennial generation is the most secular generation in American history, the most socially liberal. Will they be shifting every election to the left from now on?

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Dear Matt Drudge: Stop the race stories

Open letter to Matt Drudge, Election Day plus two

Dear Mr. Drudge:

I have written before that, whether I like it or not, you are the one of the most influential forces in modern media, possibly THE most influential single player. You tower above your peers in what you do. Despite my failed efforts, no liberal or Democrat has even tried to create a legitimate competitor to what you do. But with your influence comes power, and with power comes responsibility, and the Drudge Report in recent months has become inundated, and saturated and permeated with baiting stories about the president's race, and about blacks generally. These are beneath the standards you should set for yourself and your profession.

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Memo to the Republicans

At my age, I have lived through, and worked on, a lot of elections. I have seen the highest highs and the lowest lows. I have celebrated when I thought I was about to cry and cried when I thought I was going to be celebrating.
 
And I have seen the press and the pundits declare one or the other party “dead” after an election, only for it to rise rather quickly from the ashes.

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Tea leaves — 2012

In four hours, the two-year-long, multibillion-dollar campaign for the presidency came to a no-surprise conclusion. The polls closed at 7, and by 11 p.m., we knew. President Obama won a second term. The House remains Republican. The Senate remains Democratic. Most states voted as experts expected.

What can be gleaned from the results?

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Why Obama won

To understand why Barack Obama and Harry Reid won historically powerful victories I would cite columns I wrote, including “Hillary women will save Obama,” “Morning in Ohio,” “The great USA comeback,” “Why Dems are winning,” “Why Romney is losing,” “Bill Clinton's big message,” “Conservative crack-up” and “Bob Dole, American vet.”

The reason I cited the first seven columns is obvious. Let me explain why I included “Bob Dole, American vet,” which was a tribute to one of America's great Republicans and one of America's great veterans and heroes.

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Widening the GOP tent to include more minorities and single women

The GOP was wiped out across the board.

The other side had a simple message ... Mitt never really found a clear, simple message of what he would do that was so much better for Hispanics, non-whites, the poor ... and he did not help himself by remaining pegged as rich and elitist ...

The GOP must devise a long-term strategy to communicate its message in a positive and trusting way to minorities and single women.

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The what-ifs

If Obama wins tonight, as now seem likely if current trends continue, Romney and Republicans face three heart-wrenching "what if"s:

1) What if Romney had communicated his "compassionate conservative" message of the first debate right after he clinched the nomination — or even at the national convention? And if he had, would the GOP’s extreme "Tea Party" base have done in Romney, as they caused the loss of the Senate in 2010 — the suicide squad of the Republican Party?

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Chris Christie and the Republican future

At this late hour it does not matter what anyone writes for purposes of influencing the election. Let’s discuss a serious point. Chris Christie's reaching out to Barack Obama in a bipartisan spirit in the closing days of the campaign clearly helped Obama, and I would have to assume was designed to help Obama or done with the knowledge it would help Obama. Think about it. This is extraordinary.

It is also extraordinary that either Mitt Romney did not invite Christie to appear with him in the closing hours of the campaign, or he did, and Christie declined.

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