washington, dc

The Democratic Strategist

Political Strategy for a Permanent Democratic Majority

Political Strategy Notes

NBC News political reporter Michael O’Brien reports, “Thirty-eight percent of Americans said Republicans were to blame for the shutdown, versus 30 percent who blame the Obama administration and 19 percent who blame both, according to the Pew poll, which was conducted in the days since the shutdown came to pass. (For context, a Pew poll before the shutdown found that 39 percent would blame the GOP, 36 percent would blame Obama and 17 percent would blame both if the shutdown were to occur.)…The ABC News/Washington Post poll, meanwhile, found that 70 percent of Americans disapprove of the way congressional Republicans are handling negotiations over the federal budget, while just 24 percent approve. (Last week, 26 percent approved of the GOP’s handling, and 63 percent disapproved.)
Don’t feel bad if you didn’t notice that the Obama administration captured another al Qaeda bigwig The story has been all but smothered by shutdown coverage.
In his National Journal post, “19 Times Democrats Tried to Negotiate With Republicans: The GOP’s biggest talking point of the shutdown is only true if you ignore everything that happened before last week,” Alex Seitz-Wald makes an important point that apparently confounds the rest of the print and broadcast media.
At the Nieman Journalism Lab, Mark Coddington reports on “False Equivalence in Shutdown Reporting,” and flags several articles on the topic, including a post by Jay Rosen, who notes that “with the critique of ‘false equivalence’ now a part of the journalist’s daily life and the rise of point-of-view reporting to normal status online, the artifice is shakier than ever.” We hope.
For one of the better recent discussions of the problem, read Time Magazine’s “Not “Both Sides,” Now: Why False Equivalence Matters in the Shutdown Showdown” by James Poniewozik. “Both sides are to blame; the truth is somewhere in between”-that has always been the political media’s happy, safe place…Seeming fair becomes more important than being fair…At worst, a legitimate impulse (“Let’s make sure we’ve checked out the other side”) becomes skewing reality for the sake of appearances (“We have to put in an example of the other side doing this”).”
CBS News says there are 215 House votes ready for a clean CR to end the shutdown, 2 votes short of a majority. Many believe the spotlight would flush out a healthier majority.
At Wonkblog, Neil Irwin’s “Can business take the Republican Party back from the Tea Party?” notes “…So far the business-oriented, pragmatic wing of the Republican coalition has done more private grumbling about their Tea Party brethren than outright intra-party warfare. The question for 2014 is whether the current shutdown and debt ceiling crisis pushes them to actually recruit and fund candidates — and whether Republican primary voters in at least a few districts buy the pitch those candidates are selling.”
Beth Reinhard’s National Journal post, “Democrats Read Virginia As A War-on-Women Winner: Success with the strategy in 2013’s marquee race has Democrats hoping it will be equally effective in big 2014 contests” offers some promising observstions for Dems, including: “What we’re seeing in Virginia is incredibly validating,” said Cecile Richards, president of the Planned Parenthood Action Fund, which is airing a $1 million television and radio campaign against Cuccinelli. “I believe this race has set the table for these issues and for women to be determinative in 2014.”…Closing the gender gap was one of the major goals identified by the Republican National Committee in a sweeping review of the 2012 election, but a new United Technologies/National Journal Congressional Connection poll suggests the GOP is still struggling to connect with women. Only 14 percent of women said the Republican Party better represented their views. More than twice as many women, 33 percent, said the party had drifted further away, while 46 percent saw no change.”
Gallup oozes out yet another ‘congress job approval’ poll that somehow avoids the “which party is to blame” question.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.