top of page
Search

How To Win An Election: Give Voters Something They Want; Register More Voters, Turn Them Out To Vote

Reverse Coattails? Sure— It Can't ALL Be Fear Of Trump



Protecting women’s Choice is going to be on the ballot in several swing states, including Florida and Nevada and possibly Arizona. The question will also be on the ballot in blue states like New York and Maryland where it is expected to help down-ballot candidates who are fighting Republicans, like, for example, Democrats opposing Brandon Williams, Mike Lawler, Anthony D’Esposito, Nick LaLota and Marc Molinaro in New York, plus whichever Democrat is up against Larry Hogan for the open Senate seat in Maryland. The extra turnout in New York and Maryland won’t help Biden beat Trump— those electoral votes are in the bag already— but it sure is expected to help Biden in Florida, Nevada and Arizona. 


But that isn’t all the Democrats are counting on to help Biden’s reelection bid. Republican nihilism, dysfunction, paralysis and chaos in Congress is starting to be noticed by average voters— thanks to Republicans themselves. The Members are generally expected to engage in debates and discussions with professionalism and civility, focusing on policy disagreements rather than resorting to personal attacks or insults. Congress has codes of conduct and norms of decorum that members are expected to adhere to, including respectful behavior and language. This week, Matt Gaetz (R-FL) called Derrick Van Orden (R-WI) “a squish” and Van Orden responded by calling Gaetz “tubby,” even though Gaetz has put tremendous effort— at Trump’s insistence— into slimming down and losing over 50 pounds. Van Orden, widely considered one of Congress’ most aggressive bullies, then referred to the “Gaetz 8” as bullies.


The Gaetz 8— Gaetz and the 7 extremists who joined him to oust McCarthy: Andy Biggs (AZ), Eli Crane (AZ), Bob Good (VA), Tim Burchett (TN), Nancy Mace (SC), Ken Buck (CO) and Matt Rosendale (MT)— were also hit by Mike Lawler (R-NY) yesterday. Lawler has a tremendous Hasidic and ultra-Orthodox population in the Rockland County portion of his district and he played up to them by blaming the Gaetz 8, who he called “useful idiots,” for the attack on Israel: “In October, the House was thrown into chaos by Matt Gaetz and seven useful idiots that teamed up with him within the Republican Conference and 208 Democrats. And at this moment— when you see what happened in the aftermath of vacating the chair and Israel attacked in a terrorist attack a week later, to do that again would be detrimental to the country and global security.” Even an extreme right kook like Byron Donalds told Fox that Gaetz is to blame for the circus-like atmosphere in the House. “Matt’s vacating Kevin McCarthy,” he said, “has brought us to Lord of the Flies on Capitol Hill. Not a good situation.”


Democratic candidates— like, for example Mondaire Jones who’s running against Lawler and Eric Wilson who’s running against Van Orden— will be working their asses off in their swing districts to turn out Democrats to vote for them— and against their fractious GOP opponents. What Wilson accomplishes in his western Wisconsin swing district could make all the difference in the world in his state’s Senate election and in determining who wins Wisconsin’s 10 crucial electoral votes. Last cycle, Biden managed to win Wisconsin by less than a percentage point and by just 20,682 votes of over 3.2 million cast. Trump only won the 3rd district with 51.5%. The 19 counties in WI-03 are mostly rural and red, but Biden won the 3 most urban counties, LaCrosse, Eau Claire and Portage. A strong effort by Wilson is going to deliver Democratic wins in Vernon, Sauk, Richland, Crawford, Jackson and Chippewa counties and flip the district— and perhaps the whole election!


Yesterday, Wilson told me that “It is going to take us all to win this November. A mediocre and disjointed message just isn't going to work. Making sure Biden, Senator Tammy Baldwin, myself, and new state assembly and state senate candidates are all working together is important. It's how we are going to get people out. I stand with Biden and Baldwin in fighting for our progressive values in Wisconsin. Wisconsin has some additional excitement this year with new state maps, which for the first time in over 15 years are fair. We need a progressive message that is aligned all the way from the local and state levels to the top with Biden. I will do everything in my power to support up and down ballot to bring us a blue win.” (Please consider giving Wilson’s campaign a boost here.)


Yesterday, Russell Berman wrote that  in some swing states, like Arizona, Biden may be too unpopular to spur enough turnout by himself but that even if many voters “are unenthusiastic about Biden, they’ll vote for him if they can just be persuaded to go to the polls. ‘If you get people out for the reproductive-rights amendment they’re not going to vote for the guy who overturned Roe.’ Democrats are betting that they can reverse long-held conventional wisdom on voting behavior. Support is generally thought to flow from the top of the ticket down: State and local candidates ‘ride the coattails’ of the presidential nominee, and parties sink or swim on the strength of their standard-bearers.” This year could be different.


This reverse coattails strategy, he wrote, “is a gamble.” He didn’t even mention anything about the putrid and highly unpopular candidates the DCCC recruits— like these— who are far more likely to weigh Biden down than lift him up. “Nevertheless, faith in the reverse-coattails effect is fueling Democratic investments in down-ballot races and referenda. In North Carolina, for example, party officials hope that a favorable matchup in the governor’s race— Democratic Attorney General Josh Stein is facing Republican Lieutenant Governor Mark Robinson, who has referred to homosexuality as “filth” and compared abortion to slavery— could help Biden carry a state that Trump narrowly won twice. Democrats are also trying to break a Republican supermajority in the legislature, where they are contesting nearly all 170 districts. ‘The bottom of the ticket is absolutely driving engagement and will for all levels of the ballot,’ Heather Williams, the president of the Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee, told me.”


The theory of the reverse-coattails effect isn’t new, and its history isn’t encouraging for Democrats… A 2009 study of national elections over a 50-year period found that popular congressional incumbents offer no electoral benefit to their party’s presidential nominee.
Campaigns and parties have also frequently used ballot measures to try to juice turnout. In 2004, President George W. Bush’s reelection campaign backed amendments banning same-sex marriage that went before voters in 11 states and which Republicans hoped would motivate evangelicals to go to the polls. Bush won the election, and the amendments passed everywhere they were on the ballot, but a study by Emory University’s Alan Abramowitz found that the referenda “had no discernible impact on either voter turnout or support” for Bush.
“It would be unusual,” Abramowitz told me, for a ballot measure to increase the number of people who vote in a presidential election year. “Generally it’s the presidential election that drives turnout.” A quick look at just about any state’s results helps explain why. The number of votes for president, at the top of the ballot, typically exceeds the total for any other race further down; referenda usually appear at the end of a multipage ballot.
But there are reasons to think that dynamic could change this year. Polls show that voters are unexcited about the Biden-Trump rematch, and since 2022, when Roe was overturned, abortion-related ballot measures have produced stronger-than-expected turnout just about everywhere, including during midsummer special elections in red states such as Kansas and Ohio. “If there’s any issue that has the potential to drive turnout above and beyond the presidential turnout, it might be the abortion issue,” Abramowitz said.
Increased turnout alone, however, might not be in the Biden campaign’s best interest. Democrats have been doing well in low-turnout elections decided by politically engaged voters, but the much larger electorate expected to vote in November will likely include millions of infrequent voters, a group that now tends to favor Trump. In a NORC/University of Pennsylvania poll conducted earlier this year, Biden was beating Trump 50–39 among people who had participated in each of the federal elections since 2018. Among people who voted in just one or none, Trump was ahead by double digits.
And turnout, of course, is only half of the equation. In swing states such as Arizona and Nevada, Democrats will need voters who show up to support abortion rights to also cast their ballot for Biden. That’s no sure thing. In Kansas and Ohio, abortion-rights referenda passed easily but didn’t produce a groundswell for Democratic candidates. The same has been true with other policy areas; a majority of voters, for example, have repeatedly voted to increase state minimum wages on the same ballot in which Republican candidates who opposed lifting the wage have won election.
“I'm not sure that it’s going to have more than a marginal effect on the politicians whose issue stances are associated with those ballot initiatives,” John LaBombard, a Democratic consultant who has advised Senators Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona and Jon Tester of Montana, told me. “There’s just not quite as much intersection on those questions as some of us in D.C. like to think.”
Democrats are trying to prove that analysis wrong. They point out that, unlike in some presidential-election years, their candidates up and down the ballot are running on a unified message on issues such as abortion, which could strengthen the connection that voters make between the policy and the nominees running on it. Indivisible is also hoping that a new strategy built around “relational organizing” will attract votes for both abortion rights and Biden. Rather than sending out volunteers to knock on the doors of people they’ve never met, the group will ask those volunteers to contact members of their own community with whom they already have some ties. The Biden campaign and other Democratic groups also plan on incorporating it into their ground games this fall.
…The key is to get these people out to vote. Once they’re inside the polling booth, the first name they’ll see is Biden. They might not like him all that much, but Democrats are betting they’ll vote for him all the same.

Alan Grayson, who is basing much of his Senate campaign on registering— and re-registering— Florida voters, scoffed at the whole context of this newest unfounded worry for Democrats. “What the heck,” he asked, “is a coattail, anyway? When was that a thing, in the 1890s? This whole concept is a misconception. When you register people, and they get a ballot in the mail, they’ll vote, even if it’s Snow White vs. the Seven Dwarfs. If you’d like to see Grayson beat Social Security and Medicare sun-setter, Rick Scott, you can contribute to his campaign here.

3 comentarios


Invitado
20 abr

The title belies and, backhandedly, indicts the party this page exists to promote. Mr. Toomey below then backhandedly and quite truthfully reinforces the point (we'll see which one is censored):

If the colossally hapless worthless feckless lying corrupt neoliberal pussy democrap party WANTED to win, they WOULD, INDEED do shit that the 99% wants/needs.


Yet, since about 1966, they have refused.


So... what the fuck is this column pretending to talk about? It mentions something that LABOR has been trying to do -- unionize. Yet it refuses to mention the pre-emptive razing of the UAW by obamanation in 2009 as he sought to bolster the investment caste and auto corporations from suffering death bwo the slick-willie and democraps crash …


Me gusta

Shawn Fain is a lot savvier politically on an off day than your average Dem mandarin is on a good day:


https://www.lawyersgunsmoneyblog.com/2024/04/uaw-wins-in-chattanooga


The fact that GOP governors are all rending their garments on unionization in the South shows its significance:


The mere potential for union success was so threatening that the day before the vote began, several of the Southern Republican governors announced their opposition to the U.A.W. campaign. “We the governors of Alabama, Georgia, Mississippi, South Carolina, Tennessee and Texas are highly concerned about the unionization campaign driven by misinformation and scare tactics that the U.A.W. has brought into our states,” their joint statement reads. “As governors, we have a responsibility to our constituents to speak up when we…


Me gusta
Invitado
20 abr
Contestando a

the donkey can't use it because they've refused to do shit about it for almost 60 years.

If there is one demo that realizes this truth, it is the UAW. Remember what obamanation and your corrupt pussy donkey did to them in 2009.

Me gusta
bottom of page