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The Democratic Strategist

Political Strategy for a Permanent Democratic Majority

Political Strategy Notes

“It’s time to call out the recent flurry of new state law restrictions for what they are: an all-out campaign by Republicans to take away the right to vote from poor and black and Latino American citizens who probably won’t vote for them. The push to restrict voting is nothing more than a naked grab to win elections that they can’t win if every citizen votes…Now it is time for Republicans to step up to support a restoration of the Voting Rights Act–or to stand before the American people and explain why they have abandoned America’s most cherished liberty, the right to vote.” — from Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s recent speech to the Edward M. Kennedy Institute.

Will the Democratic presidential nominee have coattails in 2016? Alex Roarty probes the possibilities at the National Journal, and notes “The link between Sen­ate cam­paigns and the pres­id­en­tial race will be es­pe­cially strong in 2016, when many of the mar­quee Sen­ate con­tests–Flor­ida, Pennsylvania, Wis­con­sin, New Hamp­shire, and Ohio–double as pres­id­en­tial battle­grounds.”

At The Upshot Brendan Nyhan cautions Democrats not to get overly optimistic about the effects of Republican disarray in the House of Reps.

Crystal Ball’s Kyle Kondik also remains skeptical about Democratic chances to take back a House of Reps majority in 2016, but he nonetheless sketches out three ways it could happen — none of which seem all that implausible. Same for some combination of all three paths to GOP defeat.

According to the New York Times editorial board: “With the 2016 presidential election just a year away, the vast majority of states are still getting by with old machines that are increasingly likely to fail, crash or produce unreliable results. The software in them, mostly from the 1990s, doesn’t have the capabilities or security measures available today…A study released last month by the Brennan Center for Justice found that nearly every state uses some machines that are no longer manufactured. And 43 states are using machines that will be at least 10 years old next year, close to the end of their useful lives. A member of the federal Election Assistance Commission told the report’s authors, “We’re getting by with Band-Aids.”
On the eve of the first Democratic presidential debate, WaPo’s Rachel Weiner discusses Jim Webb’s opportunity and strategy.

Some interesting stats on the growing influence of the Asian American vote in CA and the U.S. from Stephen Magagnini’s report at the Sacramento Bee: “Despite making up 14 percent of California’s population, Asian and Pacific Islander Americans comprise about 8 percent of legislators, or nine members…Only 37 percent of eligible Asian American voters turned out in November 2014, which may have contributed to the low representation…Asian American numbers are predicted to surpass Latinos’ in the U.S. by 2055, according to the Pew Research Center…”

For the definitive, all-encompassing mother of all round-ups featuring what everyone thinks about Gallup ditching horse-race polling, all you have to do is click here.
Might make a good bumper sticker: “Chaos — the GOP’s New Normal.”

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