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The Democratic Strategist

Political Strategy for a Permanent Democratic Majority

Political Strategy Notes

At The Hill, Russell Berman and Erik Wasson report on signs of (gasp) bipartisanship emerging within the GOP, or at least from House Appropriations Committee Chairman Hal Rogers. Wasson and Berman note that “Rogers called for a bipartisan deal that would replace the unpopular sequester with something bridging the gap between the House budget and Senate spending measures he said were too costly to pass the lower chamber.”
Greg Sargent argues the latest round of GOP attacks against Obamacare could be the dying gasps of a doomed campaign. “By holding countless repeal votes, and by continuing to insist Republicans will continue targeting the law for elimination, Boehner and other GOP leaders are only keeping alive the hope that Obamacare will be destroyed before it becomes part of the American landscape…They’ve been feeding the repeal monster for literally years now. Even if a government shutdown does happen, of course, Obamacare won’t be defunded. But plenty of other damage will be done in the process. If GOP leaders can’t control this monster, it’s on them.”
Dem digerati should read Beth Reinhard’s National Journal post, “Why Democrats Are Laughing at the Republican Digital Strategy — And Why They Shouldn’t Be.” Reinhard reports that the new GOP system “can merge different campaign spreadsheets on one data platform. That means canvassing lists, phone banks, fundraising reports, event sign-in sheets and social networks are all integrated with outside data for highly detailed profiles of voters and supporters.”
Reinhard has another good article at the National Journal, “Democrats Using Voting Rights Issues to Protect Senate Majority,” which observes “Jotaka Eaddy, senior director of voting rights at the NAACP, said the backlash against voter ID laws nationwide was one reason turnout among black voters topped white turnout for the first time in 2012, 66.2 to 64.1 percent…”It’s important that we move our outrage into action, and I expect to see a similar impact on the 2013 and 2014 elections,” Eaddy said. “A lot of people will go to the polls with this issue in the forefront of their minds, and if Congress fails to act there will be serious repercussions.”
This new PPP poll should have Mitch McConnell worried.
At The Guardian, Harry J. Enten reports that “Felon voting rights have a bigger impact on elections than voter ID laws.” Enten explains, “A study of felon voting patterns (pdf) from 1972 to 2000 found on average 30% of felons and ex-felons would vote if given the chance, and about three out of four would vote for the Democratic nominee for president. This would have doubled Al Gore’s margin in the national vote…In terms of pure numbers, 137,478 of African-Americans in Alabama, 107,758 in Mississippi, and 145,943 in Tennessee are kept from voting.”
On the same topic, see Josh Israel’s “Felon Voting Restrictions Disenfranchise More Minority Voters Than Voter ID Laws” at Think Progress.
Shanta N. Covington explores an important distinction in the debate about voter suppression, “The difference between ‘impact’ and ‘intent’ on your right to vote” at MSNBC.com.
Here’s a hopeful note, from Deborah Foster’s PoliticusUSA post, “Can Government Pick Up Where Unions Left Off?“:”Across the country, municipalities, counties, and increasingly some states have passed worker-friendly laws like living wages, paid sick leave, expanded family leave acts, bereavement leave bills, and pregnancy disability provisions. At a time when unions are increasingly neutered, workers should turn their attention to local government to put in place rights already enjoyed in most other Western democratic nations. One way to strengthen this process is to identify the grassroots victories in these local communities as steps in an overall movement with its own identity, not unlike the grassroots movement to gain same sex marriage rights by chipping away at the discriminatory laws that blanket the country. The distance to the goal always seem formidable at the start, but as progress is made here and there across the country, soon we could have a groundswell that gives us national remedies.”
You go, guys.

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