FiveThirtyEight’s analysis of the 2016 electorate shows that Hillary Clinton’s loss was indeed due to low voter turnout. Apparently, high numbers of Democrats and Independents (and even a good number of Republicans) didn’t feel it necessary to go out and make a choice between two horrible candidates.
Who could have predicted such a thing? Turns out, it was easy to spot as far back as June 2015. As (obviously) any dolt could see, Clinton’s strong numbers against a fractured Republican field belied real issues among key demographics. And the issue wouldn’t be losing votes to the eventual Republican nominee, but in losing raw voters period. Polling can offer people a chance to see preferences, but judging intensity of preference requires a deeper reading of the numbers.
Clinton’s people should have seen this. (If they did, they figured to correct it by scaring the bejesus out of people by telling them how bad Trump was. That strategy typically invites failure.)
On its face, FiveThirtyEight’s analysis gives Clinton supporters some cover: They can claim that if the turnout had only been higher, their team would have won. (If only it hadn’t been for James Comey/the Russians/fake news/okay maybe Comey again?) But such face-saving leaves unanswered questions about why turnout was so low. Refusing to vote is a vote, as well. People think of political campaigns as an effort to get a voter to choose candidate A over candidate B, but in reality the first challenge is getting voters to make the choice at all.
This week’s guest on the Crummy Little Podcast is Chris Younce, who knows both grassroots campaigns and baseball better than most.
Having spent much of 2012 making sure the insurgent Ron Paul was on Republican primary ballots nationwide, Chris shared his insight into how difficult it would be for someone to jump into the Democratic primary at this stage.
Give it a listen here or on iTunes.
District Media Group Founder and President Beverly Hallberg is one of the savviest media professionals in Washington, D.C., and she did a great job previewing the upcoming Republican debate on this week’s Crummy Little Podcast. She also talks about why Hillary Clinton isn’t connecting with voters (and why Bernie Sanders is). There’s even some baseball talk at the end.
Download the podcast here or check it out on iTunes.
That’s Hillary Clinton’s average lead among non-white voters over various Republican candidates in the head-to-head questions from the CNN/ORC poll released on Tuesday. But the 64-68% support range she hovers might not be enough. As discussed in this week’s post on Communities Digital News, Clinton is lagging behind President Obama’s 82%-16% edge among non-white voters during his re-election.
All the headlines yapped about the Republican field closing the gap on Clinton. That’s important psychologically, but we all knew the race would tighten. This a much bigger potential problem for Clinton.
The difference between where Clinton sits and Obama’s 2012 performance translates into Mitt Romney carrying Florida, Virginia, and Ohio – with a real shot at picking up either Nevada or Colorado for an Electoral College majority. Again, this doesn’t anticipate any minority votes moving from the blue column to the red column; those are only lost votes.
That’s a real big problem for Clinton, who will surely try to exploit police/community relations as a wedge issue.
Maybe Clinton still gets by with a little help from her friends. The NAACP will surely try to literally scare up black voters with images of Freddie Gray and Michael Brown. The arbotion industry will try to do the same with women. Plus, there’s always fraud.
But the point is that she has to do something, because she isn’t inheriting the Obama coalition – at least, not in the numbers she needs.
Hillary knelt down, staring at the pastry for several minutes before she spoke . “These,” she finally said, her voice barely above a whisper, “will do nicely.”
“It’s become so easy,” she continued, standing and smoothing her suit jacket under her anxious palms. “For all the money that goes into these campaigns, this is the blind spot. There are dozens of people who tell you how to shoot your next commercial, so many who will gladly go door to door. But no one hires food tasters any more.”
Hillary turned to the aide, her eyes wide and her smile broad. “And arsenic is so very, very cheap when you know the right baker.”
“Send a dozen to O’Malley. Include a card: ‘Welcome to the race. I know you’ll see it through to the end.'” Hillary turned to leave.
The aide paused the furious scribbling in her notebook. “O-O’Malley?” she stammered. “But he’s so far behind…”
Hillary wheeled, her smile melted away and her eyes burning with fury. In an instant her face was an inch away from the whimpering aide’s.
“It’s not about O’Malley, dammit, it’s about sending a message!” Hillary growled. Then, as soon as it started, the storm subsided and her face relapsed into its familiar, painted smile. Calmly, Hillary turned to leave as she gave a final order.
“Oh, and don’t forget to sign the card: ‘Love, H.'”