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The Democratic Strategist

Political Strategy for a Permanent Democratic Majority

Political Strategy Notes

Some observation’s from Wesley Lowell’s Washington Post article, “Democrats settle on fairness issues hoping to avoid a repeat of 2010 midterm disaster“: “”There are pretty stark contrasts here, and we know that when we bring out our base vote, we’re in a pretty powerful position,” said Sen. Richard J. Durbin (D-Ill.). “In 2010, we fell on our face and we paid for it. We’re not going to make that mistake again.” Se. Charles Schumer echoed, “This week, the talk is pay equity, not ACA. We won’t have every week like that, but we’ll have more and more weeks like that because we’re talking about things that people really care about…”We’re at a turning point. . . . These last few weeks have been sort of a game-changer. I think that the day when Obamacare will be the only dominant message is over.”
And it’s not just about economic fairness. As Zachary Roth writes in his MSNBC post “Democrats finally make voting rights a top priority“: “…voting rights are likely to be a front-burner issue when Americans go to the polls this fall–at least if Democrats have their way….To voting rights advocates, the new level of engagement from top Democrats, especially Obama himself, is welcome indeed…”Nothing is more important than the American people hearing the president of the United States bringing the full passion and power of his voice and his position to the issue of promoting voting rights and an open democracy for every citizen,” said Barbara Arnwine, the president of the National Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights Under Law.”
At The American Prospect Abby Rapoport writes about a powerful new tool for evaluating election administration, Pew’s 2012 Elections Performance Index. Among her observations: “…A quick perusal shows 40 of the 50 states have improved since 2008–wait times are down an average of three minutes and online registration is spreading quickly, with 13 states offering online voter registration during the 2012 election, up from just two in 2008. (Since the election, another five states have started offering it.) Many of the top-performing states in 2008, like North Dakota, Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Colorado, stayed on top in 2012 while low performers, like Mississippi, Alabama, California, and New York remained at the bottom.”
Taegan Goddard’s Political Wire is featuring a conversation with Anna Greenberg, who was recently honored as “Democratic Pollster of the Year” by the American Association of Political Consultants. Greenberg shares her thoughts on “three key voting groups — unmarried women, young voters, and minorities — who will decide the 2014 midterm elections” right here.
Paul Blumenthal of Moyers & Company outs the lie that wealthy Democrats are spending as much “dark money” as the Koch Brothers on elections. “…Already, Koch-linked dark money groups have spent more than $30 million on ads targeting vulnerable Democratic congressional candidates running in the 2014 midterms…There exists no outside network or organization supporting Democratic Party candidates in elections, while not disclosing its donors, that spends money in comparable amounts.”
The title of Michael Tomasky’s Daily Beast post says it straight: “You’re in Denial if You Think Steve Israel Is Wrong About GOP Racism.” For me the most disgusting part of it is the failure of the so-called “respectable” conservative writers to address the issue in any way whatsoever.
For more on this topic, read Christopher Ingraham’s Wonkblog article “Data suggest Republicans have a race problem.”
From Nathan L. Gonzalez’s Rothenblog post “Democratic Senate Prospects and the New Black Voter“: “Of the top 14 Senate races, Arkansas is one of seven states where the black population cracks double digits. The other states include Louisiana (32 percent), North Carolina (21 percent), Michigan (14 percent), Virginia (19 percent) and Georgia (30 percent)….In Georgia, Democrats are excited about the long-term demographic trends in the state, but strategists believe there is a short-term opportunity to increase black turnout this year. There are an estimated 375,000 African-American voters who voted in 2012 but not 2010, and 572,000 African-Americans still unregistered. And in Louisiana, where Landrieu is running for re-election, Democrats estimate 185,000 African-Americans voted in 2012 but not 2010, and another 228,000 African-Americans are unregistered.”
Democratic candidates and campaign staffers should give Brian Beutler’s New Republic article, “Democrats Need to Start Blaming the GOP for the Death of Charlene Dill: How liberals should talk about the Medicaid expansion” a thoughtful read.

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