The Right Coast

Editor: Thomas A. Smith
University of San Diego
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Thursday, November 8, 2012

Harsanyi: Democrats Are the Silent Majority -- For Now

Don’t get too depressed, Republicans; the national decline will be divvied up justly. After all, in a liberal nation, there is no higher calling than fairness.

And a liberal nation it is. The electorate is complicated, and factors of culture and geography can dictate party identification more than any specific policy. And yes, the Republicans rolled out some ghastly candidates. But that shouldn’t fool anyone; there’s been a fundamental shift in how Americans view government’s role in society, and the GOP is losing the argument.


Oh, for heaven's sake. Conservatives should stop writing this nonsense! You would think that just having made ourselves look stupid by believing a D+6 poll from Ohio could not possibly be right, we would have learned to stop and make sure what the numbers are telling us before we form any grandiose opinions. It has not suddenly become a liberal nation with a new majority, or at least we do not know that yet. Stop running around and panicking like little girls! You are giving scared little girls a bad name! Data will be coming out over the next days and weeks and we can see what happened. Sadly, I expect there will be a news blackout on it if the story turns out to be, oh, maybe there's only kinda sorta a new majority or perhaps not, but the story will get out eventually. It may very well turn out that the story is, oh, I guess Mitt pretty much sucked as a political office seeker and I guess the geniuses that run the GOP are really bad at what they do. That's if it turns out lots of people who are quite willing to vote Republican chose not to this time around. This sort of talk is no doubt encouraged by the same people who dropped the ball. Oh, it wasn't us! We just got in the way of a world-historical political culture-shift that taking place before our eyes! What were we to do! Can't stand in the way of history! Or maybe the GOP candidate was lousy, GOP elites spineless hacks, and would-be GOP voters rationally uninspired. Maybe this is the cat food maker blaming the cats. In any event, if it really is the Dawning of the Age of Aquarius, with Obama as our Hippie Cult Leader, we'll know soon enough. We can stand to wait for all the exit poll data to come out. Geeze. --TS

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Denial is not just a river in Egypt.

Fact: The first debate -- the only moment Romney made headway -- was all about Romney tacking left. That's the only thing that gave his campaign any oxygen at all. And it didn't last.

Fact: The Obama trendline in the polls stabilized after the second debate, well before Superstorm Sandy.

Fact: President Barack Obama won the 18-29-year-old vote 60-37. He lost the 65 and older vote 56-44. Which group has longer-run prospects?

Fact: Latinos grew by 15 million between 2000 and 2010, while African Americans and Asians both grew by 4 million. Meanwhile, the white vote grew by 2 million. Asians voted for Obama by a 73-26 margin. Latinos did so by a 71-27 margin. And African Americans did so by a 93-6 margin.

Fact: Marriage equality won plebiscites in Minnesota, Maryland and Washington state. The era of gay-baiting as a working electoral tactic is over.

Fact: Despite the supposed 'enthusiasm gap' and attempts to discourage voting by making it onerous and difficult Obama voters were willing to wait in line for six hours to vote.

Fact: National exit polls indicated that Catholics voted for Obama over Romney by a 50 to 48 percent margin, identical to Obama’s victory in the national popular vote.

Fact: Elizabeth Warren is going to be a Senator.

Posted by: Keynesian | Nov 8, 2012 2:31:37 PM

Well, if there is a demographic bellwether that has the GOP quaking in its boots, it is that Warren managed to secure a Senate seat in deep-blue Massachusetts. You're going to have get better at this trolling business, Keynesian.

Posted by: Curmudgeonly Ex-Clerk | Nov 8, 2012 5:01:15 PM

Some sensible analysis from Megan Mcardle

Posted by: john knox | Nov 9, 2012 6:12:15 AM

Once the youngsters have several more years of living in mom and dad's basement, with little to no job prospects, while mom & dad's finances dwindle and all spiral down in standard of living...we'll see whether their outlook changes.

Posted by: titan | Nov 9, 2012 6:49:47 AM

Warren's significance is that she will be a major rallying point encouraging the middle, including working class whites, towards progressives in the next election(s), especially if she gets on the Banking Committee.

PS. More of this, please: Tammy Baldwin Responds To Condescending GOP Senator, It reminds women why they won't vote for the GOP.

Posted by: Keynesian | Nov 9, 2012 6:04:08 PM

Riiiight. Liberal professor from Haaaavad, is going to a be a rallying point for working class whites. Never mind the fantasy that a single senator is a rallying cry for any sizable group of voters outside of their own state. Most voters can barely recall their own senators let alone someone else's.

Posted by: john knox | Nov 10, 2012 3:21:25 PM

This ELizabeth Warren?

Posted by: Curmudgeonly Ex-Clerk | Nov 11, 2012 9:20:12 AM

I generally don't go for tactical explanations of elections. The country changed on the GOP. White men built and run this country, but their grip is slipping because of changes and reforms enacted and allowed by white men. As a white male myself, I'm annoyed at the loss of some privileges, but I'm young enough to have had lower expectations given that the writing has been on the wall for a long time.

The GOP has been getting the angry white male vote for some time, and Romney won them by a landslide. A great way to illustrate the problem is California's GOP congressional delegation, all 15 are white men. You can't as a society hand wealth and the franchise to women and minorities without expecting them to act politically. The GOP manages to alienate those constituencies and so there is a problem.

If the GOP could just stop shooting themselves in the foot with women and minorities it would go a long way. Perhaps having a few around would help prevent that. The highest ranked elected republican in California is a Korean women with multiracial children for god's sake, try something.

Posted by: molly | Nov 14, 2012 8:10:48 AM