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The Democratic Strategist

Political Strategy for a Permanent Democratic Majority

Political Strategy Notes

Devin Dwyer reports at ABC News that Romney’s gaffe, “He says we need more firemen, more policemen, more teachers. Did he not get the message in Wisconsin?,” in response to Obama’s gaffe about the private sector doing fine, is getting some attention.
At The New Yorker, Ryan Lizza addresses a rather important topic the horse-race obsessed media seems to be ignoring: “The Second Term: What would Obama do if reëlected?
You’ve probably seen several different analyses of how the electoral vote is shaping up, particularly in the “swing states.” Micah Cohen pulls them together, crunches the numbers and measures the consensus against FiveThirty Eight.com’s model:, Which “distinguishes between states that are true tossups and states that are merely competitive. While the term tossup is usually applied to about 12 states, the model sees a true coin-flip in only Ohio and Colorado, and a near coin-flip in Iowa, Virginia and Nevada. States like New Hampshire, Florida, North Carolina, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania and Michigan, meanwhile, are certainly in play, but one candidate has a clearer advantage.”
President Obama had a rough week, but at least his address to Netroots Nation 2012 provides a good reality check.
Turns out Romney’s “blind trust” isn’t so blind, after all, reports Brian Montopoli at CBS News. “There has to be some reason for the preferential tax treatment that he is receiving,” Obama for America General Counsel Robert Bauer said on a conference call with reporters. Bauer said the fact that Romney is paying a 15 percent tax rate on the income, the tax rate for carried interest, suggests Romney is performing services for the company despite claims that he is no longer tied to it…University of Colorado law professor Victor Fleischer told CBS News that continued payments from the company to the candidate create a potential conflict of interest.”
Hotline staff reports that there is a bummer in the Wisconsin recall silver lining for Dems — taking control of the state Senate: “…It turns out that victory is meaningless: the legislature is not due to convene again before the fall election and Republican lawmakers gerrymandered the state Senate districts well enough to their advantage during redistricting that they should recapture it afterward.”
The AP’s Charles Babington reports that 7 out of 10 “battleground states” have better-than-the-national-average unemployment rates.
Democratic women outnumber Republican women by better than 2-1 in both the house and senate, according the the Center for American Women in Politics. But Dems are still not doing enough to recruit, train and elect women candidates.
Next time some ignoramus starts popping off about how unions are no longer needed, send them this post from Daily Kos, “Thank a Union: 36 Ways Unions Have Improved Your Life.”
Excellent speech delivery is President Obama’s strongest card. But as Leslie Savan argues in The Nation, a more combative style, a la Chris Matthews, would serve him well. Savon quotes Matthews in a recent talk show appearance: “He’s got to be aggressive. He’s got to be big time,” Matthews said. “Stop this nickel and dime, ‘a couple bucks for the teachers, a couple bucks for the firefighters. I’m going to reduce the payroll tax.’ This is piss-ant. You can’t get re-elected with tactics. He needs a strategy. Which is, ‘we’re different from the Republicans.’ ” And when former George W. Bush deputy press secretary Tony Fratto said, “This Republican obstruction story is fantasy,” Savan reports that “Matthews drove a bulldozer over him: “You’re the roadblock party, the other party is the highway party.” (A possible slogan?)

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