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The Democratic Strategist

Political Strategy for a Permanent Democratic Majority

Political Strategy Notes

This likening of ‘Moderate Mitt’ Romney to a “neo-con Trojan Horse” is right on target. Robert Parry of Consortium News clarifies what a Romney presidency would mean: “Though Romney’s goal in Monday’s foreign policy debate was to downplay his warlike neoconservative stands, his reference to the Syrian chaos as “an opportunity” suggests that his more moderate rhetoric is just another ploy to deceive voters…In that sense, the new “moderate Mitt” is less a sign of a neocon retreat from his earlier bellicosity than a Trojan Horse to be wheeled onto the White House grounds on Jan. 20, 2013, so the neocons can pour forth from its hollowed-out belly and regain full control of U.S. foreign policy.”
Republican Richard Mourdock’s fiasco transforms the U.S. Senate race in Indiana into the “pure toss-up” category, according to The Rothernberg Political Report.
At the Daily Beast John Avlon ponders “Obama’s Risky Demographic Gamble,” and wonders if the president’s campaign has bet too much on his edge with Latinos. But TDS founding editor Ruy Teixeira says otherwise in Avlon’s post: “I think they’ve made an appropriate level of bet on changing demographics…They would have been foolish not to try and mobilize this growing segment of voters … They’ve made effective outreach to non-college-educated white voters in Ohio, and if Obama’s lost ground with white voters in Colorado–and clearly he has–it makes perfect sense to try and engage these emerging demographics. Also, a lot of these polls are under-sampling minorities and we’re not exactly sure what that means.”
WaPo’s Dan Eggen reports that the Romney campaign is spending more for ads, but the Obama campaign has more battleground state ads running in October — so far.
Time Magazine’s Mark Halperin reports that the Obama campaign is focusing most intensely on five of the nine battleground states: “When pressed, the Obama officials with whom I met said that five of the nine stand out: Nevada, Ohio, Wisconsin, Iowa, and New Hampshire. In that quintet, Democrats believe the combination of their current leads in polling, early voting (where applicable), and ground game makes their chances of winning even greater there than in the other four.”
Ezra Klein has an interesting Wonkblog post on campaign messaging, aptly boiled-down in his title, “Mitt Romney wants Republicans confident, President Obama wants Democrats scared.”
At The New York Times Katharine Q. Seelye reports on the battle for a crucial swing demographic group, white ‘waitress moms.’ Seelye notes that “About 9 percent of all voters in 2008 were white women without college degrees who had an annual household income of less than $50,000, according to exit polls…Blue-collar women are most likely to be the remaining movable part of the electorate, which is precisely why both campaigns are going at them as hard as they are,” said Geoff Garin, a Democratic pollster, who is advising Priorities USA, a pro-Obama “super PAC.”
Latest electoral vote estimates-of-the-moment (includes leaning plus safe estimates): Politico Obama 281, Romney 257; New York Times Obama 237, Romney 206; Washington Post Obama 255, Romney 206. Real Clear Politics, Obama 281, Romney 257.
The Nation’s Ari Berman has a good update about Romney’s taxes and reluctance to disclose, noting that “Romney’s lack of financial disclosure is virtually without precedent.”
Here’s a moving tribute to Jerry Tucker, a tireless labor leader and reformer whose brilliance and dedication I witnessed while working with him in the successful coalition he lead to defeat the so-called “right-to work” referendum in Missouri and in other campaigns. To spend even a few minutes with Tucker always left you inspired, energized and full of hope for building a transformative progressive coalition.

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