Nuances Do Not Turn Out The Base

Has David Axelrod been reading Veritas??

The Republican win in Florida’s special election, in a district that Obama carried both elections, is attributed to failure by the Democrat candidate to be clear about Obamacare, and by implication other key issues. The call to make robust distinctions, to be clear as a winning strategy on key issues has been an ardent plea of this publication. We have been applying it to platform formation of late.  It is of course of classical political origins but it is also the conclusion of David Axelrod, Obama’s chief political consultant.  That should come as no surprise as it is the essence of  one of Saul Alinsky’s “Rules for Radicals.”   Axelrod, along with Obama, are of course devotees.  Would that the truth had any relevance to their pursuit of distinction.

Read this excerpt from The Wall Street Journal’s  James Riley writing in today’s Political Diary — Sinking Democrats.  Riley holds that the Republicans should have won because the district has been represented by a Republican for a number of years. We believe that provided no great advantage as the Democrats had still more to work from.  Given the district’s support for Obama, and that Sink had won the district running for governor, Democrat strategists believed it would revert to what they considered its roots.  They believed it was a solid opportunity and outspent Republicans substantially.  But clear distinct messages from the Republican carried the day.

Mr. Jolly made ObamaCare a major issue in the campaign, even though his opponent wasn’t in Congress and didn’t vote for it. Ms. Sink, rather than distancing herself from the entire law, expressed support for some of its more popular provisions and argued that it should be fixed rather than repealed. Democrats up for re-election in November have been using a similar strategy. But if it didn’t work for someone who didn’t even vote for ObamaCare, what are the chances it will work for a candidate who did?

Responding to Ms. Sinks loss, former White House senior advisor David Axelrod said Democrats should stop trying to nuance their position on ObamaCare—”that never, ever works”–and focus instead on finding issues that rally the Democratic base. “The real challenge [in November] is how do we get base voters—young people, minorities” to turnout for a midterm election, Mr. Axelrod told MSNBC. In other words, the lesson for Democrats is that ObamaCare is a losing issue, so they need to change the subject.

An e-mail received after this came to light made the trenchant observation “Maybe the Scott County Republican Platform Committee should have taken such advice and applied it to the platform instead of falling all over themselves to please the The Davenport Times-Democrat  Quad City Times .”        R Mall

 Bold typeface our emphasis, text in original.


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