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Friday, March 28, 2008

Drawn Out Primary Hurting Dems?

The theme of the week? The Democratic civil war.

Several polls have come out this week suggesting that once the Democratic nominee is decided, many supporters of the losing candidate will either a) Sit out the general election; or b) Vote for McCain over the Democratic nominee.

Will those numbers hold?

Well, IF those numbers held, John McCain would win in a landslide. This spat of polls generally agree that 25-30% of Clinton supporters would vote for McCain over Obama. Another 10-15% would sit out. The numbers look similar for Obama supporters in a Clinton nomination.

Conservatively, that's 35% of the Democratic vote that the winner of the Democratic Primary would not have in November. These polls suggest that regardless of the Democratic nominee, enough Democrats will be disenfranchised that the nominee could not possible rally enough numbers to keep pace with the GOP and McCain's significant Independent base. Once again: a landslide, the likes of Reagan in '84 and Nixon in '72.

Now, does anyone think that's possible in this election? Will the Republican Party dominate in November after the success, or lack thereof, of the current administration?

Not a chance.

So what's going to happen?

Without a doubt, those polling numbers will prove to be premature and misleading. Two very important factors will make those polls obsolete within weeks of a concession from either candidate.

1) Democrats who supported the loser will then be left with only two choices. One choice is a candidate that is identical or similar to their own in nearly every issue. The alternative is four more years of Republican leadership in the executive branch, to which, I think, most Democrats will have a strong aversion. The choice for Democrats is clear.

2) If the loser of this primary does not come out in full support of the nominee by the convention, they should leave the party. Yes, ego's will be bruised but wounds must be licked. To not do everything it takes to keep out a conservative hawk would be a horrendous career move by the Democratic runner-up. If this is coupled with a Democratic loss in the general election, the loser can never hope to win the nomination of the Democratic Party in the future.

Knowing this, the vanquished Democrat will fully, publicly, and officially endorse the vanquisher either before or at the convention. When this happens, nearly every supporter of the losing candidate will follow the endorsement to the nominee, thus evening the playing field for the general election.

The lesson, as always... see through the polls!


Adam said...

Well said... as usual.

Anonymous said...

Adam's right. As usual.

And this: Once the Democrats stop running against each other and run against McCain instead - that is, once they start focusing on America's problems and aspirations instead of each other's foibles and flaws - their strength will rise as McCain's wanes. I just wish this could start to happen before the primary's decided. Either of the Democrats will look better to voters as soon as they turn their aim at the real target.

Anonymous said...

I guess this means they have to run together. With Ralph Nader for Attorney General and Whats-his-face Gravel for Dogcatcher.

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Ben said...

Been about five days since your last post -- I even see some spam posts (the blogger's weed) popping up. I have really enjoyed your explanations and editorials on these issues; please keep them coming! We all owe you much appreciation....

Norman said...

Sorry to see you haven't written in a while. Will be you ever continue the early American campaign series?

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