The Semi-Solid South

Georgia?

The results show a region cleaving apart along new electoral fault lines. In the region’s center, clustered along the Mississippi River — where Bill Clinton polled most strongly — the GOP remains largely unchallenged and the voting divide between blacks and whites is deepening. Nearly nine of 10 of white voters in Mississippi, for instance, went for Republican nominee Mitt Romney this year, according to exit polls. About 96 percent of black voters in the state supported Obama.

The pattern is markedly different in the five states that hug the Atlantic coast from Virginia to Florida, which together hold 82 of the South’s 160 electoral votes. A combination of a growing black population, urban expansion, oceanfront development and in-migration from other regions has opened up increasing opportunities for Democrats in those states.

“Georgia is an achievable target for Democrats in 2016,” said Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed, a frequent Obama surrogate during the campaign. “What you’re going to see is the Democratic Party making a drive through the geography from Virginia to Florida.”

Obama outperformed every Democrat since Carter in the Southeast, except in Georgia, where Clinton did only slightly better in ’96.






85 replies
  1. 1
    Jay says:

    On Twitter, I asked Goldie Taylor (who used to work for Mayor Reed) if she thought he could win statewide office in GA. She said no, but this blog post gives me hope. Georgia’s governor is a birther yokel, so he needs to be defeated. Mayor Reed went all in for President Obama this time around, so we should go all – in for him in a potential matchup with Governor Deal (If y’all need prove that Reed is the real thing, check out this “Meet The Press” appearance. All day every day, baby.).

  2. 2
    Marc says:

    Oh, you’ve got to love this line from the Post article:

    Some Republicans had hoped to make at least small inroads among black voters in 2012 given lower African American turnout in the 2010 midterms, high black unemployment and the modest success of presidential candidate Herman Cain in the Republican primaries.

    Remind me which primaries or caucuses Herman Cain won? But yeah, I’m sure black voters were ready to ditch the first black president because Republicans briefly flirted with a philandering buffoon.

  3. 3
    Short Bus Bully says:

    Taking parts of the south away from the racist cracker brigade would be the sweetest revenge. The only way to finally win the Civil War after all these years is to beat them electorally.

  4. 4
    Corner Stone says:

    “What you’re going to see is the Democratic Party making a drive through the geography from Virginia to Florida.”

    The Democrats don’t have any up and coming possibles with the last name of “Sherman” do they?

  5. 5
    MaximusNYC says:

    This may be true, but South Carolina’s going to be a hard nut to crack.

    As James L. Petigru (himself a former congressman from SC) famously remarked after the state seceded: “South Carolina is too small for a republic and too large for an insane asylum.”

  6. 6
    GregB says:

    Florida and Virginia have now decidedly slipped away from reliably Republican red.

    North Carolina is on the cusp.

    The GOP’s only hope is to listen to the wise words of Jonah Goldberg and embrace racism more fervently.

  7. 7
    Ben Franklin says:

    The shrinking white majority is the primal force behind the Teahadist, who has to be the loudest squeaky wheel needing the grease of political voice. They are the Mouse that roared, once upon a time, whose squeak is dissipating.

  8. 8
    pseudonymous in nc says:

    The unstated suggestion is that white GA exurban voters would be more willing to vote for a Democrat of a paler hue, because it doesn’t bring with it the fear of Those People In Atlanta coming out to steal their lawn tractors.

    I also suspect that the provisions of the ACA may have an impact on lower-income voters in the state who might be gut Republicans and social conservatives, but like not being screwed over by their health insurers.

  9. 9
    jheartney says:

    Demographics is destiny. Once Texas turns blue, it’ll all be over for the presidency; no more Republican presidents unless the party fundamentally reinvents itself. But given the nature of the conservative base, it’s just not going to be possible to rebuild a winning coalition anytime soon.

    They’ve been given a glimpse of this reality with the 2012 election results, but it’ll take a few more losses before it really sinks in. By that time they’ll be losing core southern states as well as Texas, and the big money that’s funded GOP candidates for decades will go away. Without that, the rump of holdover Senators and Representatives will dissolve as well. Hello oblivion.

    Pan Am, Pontiac, Borders, Oldsmobile, Circuit City, Kodachrome, the GOP; you’ll be able to tell your grandkids you remember them.

  10. 10
    Geoduck says:

    @Corner Stone:

    The Democrats don’t have any up and coming possibles with the last name of “Sherman” do they?

    Hoorah! Hoorah! We bring the Jubilee!

  11. 11
    Tokyokie says:

    Virginia and Florida are not just in play, they’ve gone for Obama the last two times out, and North Carolina clearly is already in play. I’ve read that Georgia has a rapidly growing Hispanic population, and I think it will move into play next, and, an election cycle later, so will Texas. Move those into the blue column, and who cares about the rest? They only have a combined 49 electoral votes, 62 if you include Kentucky and West Virginia. Need to get Missouri back to blue though……

  12. 12
    the Conster says:

    Since conservatism can never fail and can only be failed, they’ll double down with their neo-confederate agenda, and will have double the fail. How else will they ever get the teabangelicals to turn out?

  13. 13
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @pseudonymous in nc: Those lower-income voters will enjoy the better health and peace of mind the ACA brings them, and vote against the party that delivered it — the white ones, anyways.

    Happened with Medicare, no reason why it shouldn’t happen with Obamacare.

  14. 14
    Corner Stone says:

    I’m kind of hoping this article isn’t true. Because if it is, then Sullivan may actually turn out to be right about something:
    “The decadent Left in its enclaves on the coasts is not dead—and may well mount what amounts to a fifth column.”

  15. 15
    LosGatosCA says:

    ‘Sanity’ coming to a Southern State near you soon! And by soon we mean before the end of the 21st century. Maybe. Possibly. Perhaps. Not holding breath yet.

    I’m starting to hope that the conventional Kristol vision of 1993 that healthcare reform will endanger Republican hegemony over the lower class Republican ‘values’, i.e. racist, voter is true. However, peak wingnut still proves elusive.

    Seeing will be believing.

  16. 16
    Ron Thompson says:

    It’s good that the Solid South is finally breaking up and that Virginia and Florida, and perhaps in time North Carolina, are becoming reliably Democratic states at the presidential level.

    But since that’s the case, there’s really no percentage in putting national resources into Georgia or, God knows, South Carolina. You don’t get anything extra by getting 360 electoral votes. What we need to do now is to re-take the House. That battle will be fought in Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and upstate New York, and will require a different kind of appeal than what it would take to make South Carolina a totally superfluous addition to the Democratic electoral vote total. People don’t seem to realize it, but the Democratic lock on the electoral college is now firmly in place. Now we need to recapture what was lost due to the President’s inept performance in his first two years–the House in 2014, and the senate seats we lost in 2016.

  17. 17
    Corner Stone says:

    Texas will begin to approximate purple in 2020, and will start going blue in subsequent cycles.
    We’ll lose a lot of the older crackers, but will need to make a dedicated and sustained campaign to deliver good policy outcomes for Hispanics and AA’s.
    I continually remind people that “Hispanics” are not a gimme to just be assumed they exist therefore D.

  18. 18
    JoyfulA says:

    @MaximusNYC: I know a well-to-do South Carolina fund-raiser and bundler for the GOP who decided this time around to vote for Obama. I can see SC as blue as NC by 2016.

  19. 19
    Corner Stone says:

    @Ron Thompson:

    Now we need to recapture what was lost due to the President’s inept performance in his first two years—the House in 2014, and the senate seats we lost in 2016.

    Damn, somebody bringing the lumber and it’s not even game time yet!

  20. 20
    Raven says:

    Hell yes!

  21. 21
    Not Sure says:

    #16 – You had me up until “the President’s inept performance.”

  22. 22
    redshirt says:

    OfA should transfer wholesale into a Texas Democratic organization. It’s the kill shot. Take Texas away from the R’s and they’ve got nothing ever again. They’re done. It’s the head of the beast and without it, they’re dead. DO IT.

  23. 23
    hoodie says:

    @Jay: Deal is a crook who used to be a blue dog Dem (I lived in his district when he was distinctly more moderate). Georgia is kind of set up like Virginia, one heavily populated urban area (Atlanta/NoVa) surrounded by wingnuttia. Atlanta may go the way of northern VA, with the suburbs becoming increasingly diverse and more blue as immigrants and minorities move there. Meanwhile, the wingers in the exurbs and rural areas will put a drag on Georgia Republicans being able to moderate (this may be motivating guys like Chambliss to test the waters on the anti-tax front). It is entirely within reason to think that a certain Democratic Party elder stateswoman could turn Georgia into a swing state in 2016. North Carolina’s Dem party is bogged down from a series of scandals, but it will likely trend the same way as the Triangle, Triad, Charlotte and Asheville grow and the outlying areas continue to decline. Some very good potential statewide candidates, particularly women.

  24. 24
    redshirt says:

    Does West Virginia go D in 2016 if Hillary is the nominee? I’d say, sadly, yes. If so, how many other southern states get closer to play? Arkansas?

  25. 25
    ruemara says:

    @Not Sure: You have to understand, that is gospel amoungst some progressives. Noonan it.

    I never understood why Georgia was so red. There’s a lot of well educated AAs in the Hotlanta region and surrounding areas, along with moderate to progressive whites, a sizable latino population, IOW a mixed bag of an electorate that is pretty reliably Democratic voter. I look forward to it becoming a better state.

  26. 26
    the Conster says:

    By the way, shouldn’t the tag be changed to Black Ronald Reagan now?

  27. 27
    scav says:

    @Not Sure: ron’s clearly lost after time travel. Something inept muat have happened as we’re losing seats in 2024 and 2016. That sentence got away from him.

  28. 28
    Roger Moore says:

    @MaximusNYC:

    This may be true, but South Carolina’s going to be a hard nut to crack.

    If the last election is any guide, South Carolina is going to be an easier nut to crack than most of the red states. Yes, it went to Romney by over 10%, but that still made it the 5th easiest red state to flip behind North Carolina, Georgia, Missouri, and Indiana (barely). So it looks as if the South Atlantic states really are the best as a group for the Democrats.

  29. 29
    jefft452 says:

    @Ron Thompson: “But since that’s the case, there’s really no percentage in putting national resources into Georgia…”

    Depends on what you mean by national resources, if you mean party building, I disagree

    if you mean actively campaigning there in 2016, maybe yes and maybe no, we’ll see in 2016

    if you mean trimming the national party’s sails to appeal to southern whites, tableing issues that frighten blue dogs, ignoring Liz Warren while taking the sage advice of Harold Ford …
    Then hell yes, you are right

  30. 30
    MattF says:

    I’d be pretty surprised if either GA or SC went Democratic any time in the near future, but it would be great if the Republican party was forced to spend resources in either state, rather than in, say, OH or PA.

  31. 31
    FlyingToaster says:

    @Tokyokie:

    Need to get Missouri back to blue though……

    Not gonna happen.

    As a third generation (and now 33-years “ex-“) Missourian, it’s not gonno be a swing state for a very long time.

    The people running the state now are the people I went to high school with (and their ilk). I left, my siblings left, most of my and their friends left. There’s one relative left (my brother’s daughter from his first marriage), who tells me flat out that it’s all god-botherers and racists where she lives in suburban KC.

    Unlike the coasts, there’s not a lot to draw immigrants (and I’m talking from other parts of the US as well); the major industries that are left are not the skilled labor of yore. Only so many people can sing in Branson :). So kids go on to college, graduate, then realize there’s not an effing job to be had and light off for greener pastures.

    If you look at GA, NC, SC, FL, TX, AZ, you see liberal retirees moving for the climate, and businesses springing up around the uni’s and resorts and recruiting folks from all over. You also see this in winter tourism destinations like CO and UT and even NH.

    I’d put MO in with KS and NE and OK and TN and assume it’s lost swing-state status for the next 30 years or so.

    YMMV.

  32. 32
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @redshirt:
    Those states — West Virginia and Arkansas — are red for the rest of our lives. Culture changes, glacially. Demography changes a bit faster, but rarely that fast, unless there’s a gold rush.

  33. 33
    Davis X. Machina says:

    If you look at GA, NC, SC, FL, TX, AZ, you see liberal retirees moving for the climate

    . A two-edged sword. There’s a slow drift among migrant voters to vote, over time, more like their neighbors. And the GOP share of the 65+ vote has grown in every election since 2000.

  34. 34
    JGabriel says:

    __
    __
    WaPo via mistermix:

    The pattern is markedly different in the five states that hug the Atlantic coast from Virginia to Florida, which together hold 82 of the South’s 160 electoral votes. A combination … has opened up increasing opportunities for Democrats in those states.

    I really can’t see South Carolina, home of secession and confederacy, voting for a Democratic President any time soon.

    .

  35. 35
    Suffern ACE says:

    @Davis X. Machina: it has grown because those people were voting republican since they were 40.

  36. 36
    RareSanity says:

    @Jay:

    Reed can’t win a statewide office…it’s not even a certainty he’ll win re-election as mayor. He gambled big time on a project to deepen the port in Savannah, to bring in larger ships. He convinced some Georgia financial heavyweights that he had a direct line to the Obama administration and they brought him onboard to get some federal money.

    He lost that gamble…

    He spent most of his first two years in office, bouncing between Savannah and D.C., trying to secure funding. All the while, his political rivals in Atlanta were constantly pointing out that he was spending more time in Savannah and D.C., than he was in Atlanta. He’s been trying to play catch-up since the whole deal fell through, but the damage has already been done.

    Time will tell if it’s enough damage to fail his re-election bid, but any hopes of a statewide office died with that deal.

  37. 37
    JPL says:

    I don’t see GA changing anytime soon. The governor won easily even though he was questioned about his financial dealings. The state elected Broun and Price who are both anti-government, anti-science doctors who would rather rip the safety net to shreds. The retirees assume that safety nets pertain to those other than themselves.

    also, too… the bah humbug season has started early in my house

  38. 38
    Anya says:

    @ruemara: I think Georgia is attainable for Democrats. In 2012, Obama received 45.4% of the votes without any effort. I think if we have a charismatic presidential candidate (hate to say it, but white male), in the next election Georgia will be in the Dem column.

  39. 39
    FlyingToaster says:

    @Davis X. Machina: Alas, more than half of the retirees were GOoPers up north. My mom lives in one of those counties in Florida.

    Of course, I reminder her of [ex-Bostonian GOP retiree] and say, “See, we shipped our dregs off to you in Florida.”

    Heh.

  40. 40
    Marc says:

    @Davis X. Machina:

    And the GOP share of the 65+ vote has grown in every election since 2000.

    Yeah, what Suffern ACE said. It’s grown because the “Greatest Generation” that grew up under FDR and Truman has largely died off. Since 2000 the cohort of seniors has been the much more conservative “Silent Generation” types who always voted Republican. But time has a way of fixing that, too.

  41. 41
    pseudonymous in nc says:

    @Davis X. Machina:

    Those lower-income voters will enjoy the better health and peace of mind the ACA brings them, and vote against the party that delivered it—the white ones, anyways.

    Not while the GOP explicitly campaigns on taking it away, as opposed to the voucher shit of the Ryan Medicare plan.

    @Roger Moore:

    If the last election is any guide, South Carolina is going to be an easier nut to crack than most of the red states.

    I think the 55-45 split in SC is closer to that of Mississippi than the 53-47 of Georgia — you start hitting wingnut bedrock with a lot less digging.

  42. 42
    Helen Bedd says:

    I’m not sold on any of this….of the five southern coastal states, VA was the only one where obama didn’t do worse with white voters than he did in 08 …he had smaller margins of victory among all voters in VA and FL [yes, a win is a win….but still] and had larger margins of defeat in NC, SC,GA [Obama got less than 25% of the white vote in the latter two and they won’t be in play until the number nears 35%]

  43. 43

    I am all for doing work in the south, particularly in Texas. And I would never cede any states. But I think the best plan for the DNC is to keep working in Ohio, Iowa, Wisconsin, Michigan, Colorado, and Virginia to make sure that they stay blue the next time around.

    By that I mean work on the state legislatures and statewide offices. Just think how much easier it would have been this year without Kasich & Husted in Ohio.

  44. 44
    Patricia Kayden says:

    Unfortunately for the Republicans, there just aren’t enough angry White males to put them in the White House. When I first moved to Charles County in 2000, Republicans dominated local politics. With around 40% of the population now composed of Latinos/Blacks/Asians, Democrats run things here.

    We’re going to see a lot of that more and more as time goes by, unless the Republicans figure out how to reach out to minorities, women and young people. Right now they appear to be so angry that I don’t see that happening.

  45. 45
    JGabriel says:

    __
    __
    TPM:

    Republican lawmakers are increasingly abandoning Grover Norquist’s no-taxes pledge and declaring a willingness to raise tax revenues as part of a deal to avoid the severe austerity measures set to take effect in January.

    It’s interesting that the same sequester deal the GOP themselves demanded is now being used to force them into tax increases they adamantly oppose.

    Just luck, or more 11 dimensional chess?

    .

  46. 46
    Anya says:

    Armando at DailyKos:

    The Obama coalition is, certainly in terms of Latinos and African Americans, a Democratic coalition, not formed just for Obama (it is pretty funny to think of Latinos as an Obama constituency alone when you consider that Hillary Clinton was winning Latinos by 2-1 over Obama in the 2008 primaries). This is not meant to slight President Obama and his campaign team, who did a remarkable job in garnering high turnout in these key constituencies. But the idea that it was President Obama who first formed this electoral coalition, as Sides suggests, is unadulterated bullshit.

    Is Armando still fighting the Great 2008 Primaries Wars?

  47. 47
    MaximusNYC says:

    @JoyfulA: From your lips to God’s ears! But it’s hard for me to envision.

    Remember, South Carolina is Mississippi’s route to the sea.

  48. 48
    Roger Moore says:

    @pseudonymous in nc:

    I think the 55-45 split in SC is closer to that of Mississippi than the 53-47 of Georgia—you start hitting wingnut bedrock with a lot less digging.

    I don’t know about that. South Carolina is actually whiter (64% non-Hispanic White) than either Georgia (56%) or Mississippi (58%). That suggests SC had a larger percentage of its white population vote Democratic than either NC or MS, which seems to contradict the idea that you hit wingnut bedrock sooner.

  49. 49
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @Anya:

    Is Armando still fighting the Great 2008 Primaries Wars?

    He’s alive, isn’t he?

  50. 50
    Corner Stone says:

    @Anya: It’s more likely he’s making a simple point supported by data.

  51. 51
    Suffern ACE says:

    @JGabriel: the voters called their bluff. The voters may not see military spending as a must have.

  52. 52
    Beth in VA says:

    I’m not as optimistic. Barack Obama is an unusually impressive candidate, and Mitt Romney was impressively awful. Seriously, a gay loving hating Mormon from Massachusetts?

    Based on my experience canvassing in a red part of Virginia, African American turnout was higher because of Obama and the white turnout was lower because of Romney. Even people voting for Romney weren’t excited by him. This talk of a new map dominated the analysis after 2008, and then came the 2010 “shellacking”. I really hope I’m proven wrong in 2016 (or even sooner, we have an election for Governor coming up).

  53. 53
    redshirt says:

    @Anya: Puma now, Puma forever!

    Also, mills.

  54. 54
    Publius39 says:

    @Anya: Yeah, that sounds like some PUMA shit to me too.

  55. 55
    Publius39 says:

    And let’s not forget that Armando was horribly wrong on his prediction of how SCOTUS would rule on the ACA.

  56. 56
    Roger Moore says:

    @Anya:

    Is Armando still fighting the Great 2008 Primaries Wars?

    It doesn’t look like it to me. His point is that Hispanics have been a fairly solid Democratic voting bloc for at least a generation, not an Obama-specific phenomenon. It’s a point worth making, since it suggests that the declining percentage of whites in the population is a real crisis for the Republicans, not something that’s going to go away when Obama retires.

  57. 57
    Peregrinus says:

    @Anya:

    Whether he is or not, it does put paid to the notion that it is purely minorities sticking it to the Man that voted for Obama, as opposed to people of color understanding that GOP policies suck ass no matter who the Dem candidate is.

  58. 58
    JGabriel says:

    __
    __
    Beth in VA:

    This talk of a new map dominated the analysis after 2008, and then came the 2010 “shellacking”. I really hope I’m proven wrong in 2016 …

    Well, it’s a mixed bag. I think the realignment, or “new map”, is real, but we still have to nominate strong presidential candidates in order to take advantage of it.

    And, due to a combination of gerrymandering and lower voter turnout in off-years, we’re still going to have a Republican dominated House for most of the decade. Here’s hoping there is enough change by 2020 that Democrats can take control of the state houses again and redraw the district maps in a manner that either favors us more, or is at least more neutral, than the currently drawn GOP-favoring districts.

    .

  59. 59
    Cmm says:

    @Davis X. Machina:

    But will it keep growing once those who are currently below 55 (and thus slated to lose Medicare based on Republican proposals) hit 60+? I am hoping they (we, since I am 46) hold a very long grudge; also, too, much more of my demographic cohort was turned off by the Republican antigay stuff than the group currently marching through senior citizenship. Plenty of folks do become more conservative with age, but my group has been the “pitted against” more or less our whole lives and hopefully many of us will remember that as we age.

    As for Georgia, it is only very recently that the Georgia congressional delegation became so red, much because of gerrymandering after both the 2000 and 2010 censuses in the case of the House. In the Senate, both seats have been Republican only since 2004. Of course, 2 of the last 3 Dem Senators, Nunn and Zell Miller, were very Blue Dog, but Max Cleland was quite decent. And both Isakson and Chambliss are much more of the businessman-Republican sort than the Inhofe/Dement wackadoodle variety. The Dems only finally lost their hold on the Georgia state lege and the governorship within the last decade as well, though again, the last Dems in power were conservative enough, and the Republicans who took over moderate enough, that it was more of a continuum than a groundbreaking revolution. Turning back to blue would require fairly conservative democratic candidates but it isn’t as heavy a lift as Mississppi or Alabama would be.

    Several times in the run up to this past election I was pleasantly surprised to see Georgia colored dark pink instead of solid red. Doesn’t sound like much but it showed that the armor is not as thick as it looks. The trick will be keeping the turnout high among African American voters once Obama leaves office–I have a feeling a lot of the higher turnout was among older African Americans rather than younger ones–and bringing the growing Hispanic and Asian minority groups into the fold.

  60. 60
    Shalimar says:

    @Suffern ACE: This. My grandmother is 86 years old. Her dad was an active Democrat in Alabama when she was growing up, and she has been a Democrat all her life even after the Republicans became the party of white privilege in the 1970s. But those like her are getting older and dying, to be replaced among senior citizens by younger voters who did switch from Democrat to Republican decades ago. And many decades in the future, our current young voters will be seniors, and retirees won’t be nearly as ultra-conservative on average as they are now.

  61. 61
    pseudonymous in nc says:

    @Roger Moore:

    That suggests SC had a larger percentage of its white population vote Democratic than either NC or MS, which seems to contradict the idea that you hit wingnut bedrock sooner.

    Take the 2010 gubernatorial election: you have a woman Republican whose parents were Sikh immigrants, and who was seen as part of Mark Sanford’s anti-establishment wing, beating a white male Catholic Democrat 51-47. Sanford himself won 53-47 and 55-45 against Blue Dog opponents.

    The population growth in SC is in the upstate, which is pretty much the reddest part of the state (Romney got over 60%), and there’s not much impact from the people who live in York County just south of Charlotte. It’s also around Myrtle Beach, which is deep red. SC is able to support a wide spectrum of wingnuttery, from bible-bashers to Paultards to teabaggers.

  62. 62
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @redshirt: We can always dream. Good idea.

  63. 63
    Alex S. says:

    Indiana moved by 10% between 2008 and 2012 with the only difference that Obama gave up his campaign there. In 2008, only Obama had a campaign there, McCain didn’t, so a good campaign changes things. Now, Obama’s national margin was 4% smaller in 2012, so the state-only swing of Indiana was about 6%. So a similarly effective one-sided campaign in Georgia would not have helped Obama sufficiently there. If Georgia is meant to turn blue, it needs a strong national politician (even stronger than Obama in 2008) AND a special candidate’s bonus. For example, I could imagine that Mark Warner or, theoretically, Jim Webb, as Southern Democrats, could make Georgia more competitive. After 2008, I thought that the Dems could easily turn more states purple, like Montana, Missouri, Arizona… but now it’s looking very hard. Luckily, Obama’s electoral map is very comfortable on its own.
    In my opinion, anything beyond North Carolina is going to be a stretch for quite a while. Montana: ONLY with Brian Schweitzer. West Virginia: I think Hillary can get it. Georgia: It has to be a white Southern male. Arizona needs a gun-loving hispanic Democrat. There’s no such prominent Democrat.
    The next republican nominee will either be Jeb Bush, someone with Bush’s blessing (Rubio?), or Christie. Christie can win Ohio, but will not make many inroads with minorities. Rubio is a bit of a lightweight. Jeb Bush is the strongest candidate and will get the whole South (except for Virginia which however needs a strong democratic effort), Arizona and Montana. The Dems should keep the progressive Midwest and New Hampshire. Ohio will be more important than ever and someone like Cuomo is NOT a good fit. If Hillary doesn’t run, Mark Warner should.

  64. 64
    Schlemizel says:

    Sing along with me!

    Bring the good old bugle, boys, we’ll sing another song
    Sing it with a spirit that will start the world along
    Sing it as we used to sing it, 50,000 strong
    While we go marching through Georgia.

    Hurrah! Hurrah! we bring the jubilee!
    Hurrah! Hurrah! the flag that makes you free!
    So we sing the chorus from Atlanta to the sea
    While we go marching through Georgia.

    So we made a thoroughfare for freedom and her train,
    Sixty miles in latitude, three hundred to the main;
    Treason flees before us, for resistance is in vain
    While we go marching through Georgia.

  65. 65
    Schlemizel says:

    Probably not a popular song there but it makes me smile

    Sometimes the arc of history needs a little assist to bend toward justice

  66. 66
    Anya says:

    @Corner Stone: What data? People who vote in the primaries are voting because they are members of that party. So, the Latinos who voted in the Dem primaries are Democrats. Obama expanded on that. George Bush picked up 40 percent of the Latino vote in 2004. That tells us there was a huge swing to Obama. Why is he minimizing that? Also, why not compare Kerry’s general election share of the Latina vote to Obama’s, which is more appropriate, instead of Hillary’s?

  67. 67
    Ted & Hellen says:

    @Ron Thompson:

    Now we need to recapture what was lost due to the President’s inept performance in his first two years—the House in 2014, and the senate seats we lost in 2016.

    You can’t say that here.

  68. 68
    Publius39 says:

    @Anya:

    Also, why not compare Kerry’s general election share of the Latina vote to Obama’s, which is more appropriate, instead of Hillary’s?

    Because it would fuck up the narrative that Hilary was a super-progressive candidate that could have garnered 1000 EVs if only Obama hadn’t meddled in their affairs.

  69. 69
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @Anya: I think Armando, who I tend to find blinkered and unpleasant, is right here. I don’t think the story with Latinos is that they just love Obama. I think the story is that year by year there are more of them voting, and voting for Democrats for reasons that have to do with Republican xenophobia, and IMHO Obama has capitalized on that rather than driving it. In fact, it looked to me like the conventional wisdom among Democrats on immigration was very recently that it was crucial to talk tough (and appeal to blue-collar white folks: see that special election in Pennsylvania — Murtha’s old district, was it?) until that suddenly swung, to the point where toughness on immigrants is dwindling rapidly as a litmus test for “serious” Democrats.

  70. 70
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Cmm:

    Plenty of folks do become more conservative with age, but my group has been the “pitted against” more or less our whole lives and hopefully many of us will remember that as we age.

    I know that the “people get more conservative as they age” thing is conventional wisdom, but I don’t actually think it’s true. I think it’s more that time marches on and that views that may have been reasonably liberal for the time that person grew up in look more and more conservative as society grows past them.

    Just one example off the top of my head: in his time, Lincoln was thought to be very liberal because he believed that the US should repatriate former slaves back to Africa. Now, of course, that’s a ridiculously racist and right-wing view, but at that time it was in the mainstream of liberal ideas.

  71. 71
    JPL says:

    @Ted & Hellen: 2010 the Tea Party rose to prominence because of the news media. Those were good times. Whether it was in my city of Roswell, GA and it’s handful of demonstrators or Glen Beck’s followers, CNN was there to cover the news. CNN defended the idiots that wouldn’t allow representatives to have a forum on the health care law. Blame Obama for not using the bully pulpit but other factors were at play.
    also.. Michele Obama doesn’t like white, fat people.

  72. 72
    Roger Moore says:

    @Anya:

    So, the Latinos who voted in the Dem primaries are Democrats. Obama expanded on that. George Bush picked up 40 percent of the Latino vote in 2004. That tells us there was a huge swing to Obama. Why is he minimizing that?

    I think he’s arguing that George W Bush was pretty much the best case scenario for the Republicans in terms of the Latino vote. He was a governor from a heavily Latino state who made a real attempt to win Latino votes. He still only got 35% of the Latino vote in 2000 and 40% in 2004, and those were solidly the best results for a Republican since Reagan. If you look at the Democratic advantage in the Latino vote, since 1980 they’ve been +21%, +24%, +39%, +36%, +51%, +27%, +18%, +36%, and +44%. That sure looks as if they’re a solid, dependable part of the Democratic coalition rather than newcomers who only joined because of Obama.

    @FlipYrWhig:

    I think the story is that year by year there are more of them voting, and voting for Democrats for reasons that have to do with Republican xenophobia, and IMHO Obama has capitalized on that rather than driving it.

    I think there’s more to it than Republican xenophobia. Even if you ignore the racial angle, Latinos look a lot more like Democratic voters than they do like Republicans. They skew younger and poorer than the general population, and those are both groups that lean Democratic. If there’s something that requires Republican xenophobia as an explanation, it’s why poor Southern whites tend to vote Republican when their demographics suggest they should lean Democratic.

  73. 73
    PC in SC says:

    i live in SC — we’ve had 8 yrs of “Appalachian Trail” Sanford, 4 yrs of “Nimrata” Haley (in which SC taxpayers’ and their dependents had their Soc Sec # stolen) and 12 full years of gop-controlled legislature.

    hopefully we will get a competent Dem state party chair that will support the county parties to get the word out: “12+ yrs of the GOP — how’s that working out for ya?”

  74. 74
    redshirt says:

    @Patricia Kayden: I don’t think it’s a dream. If Dems got serious in Texas the shift to purple/blue could happen in 2016. Recruit smart Latinos to run for local offices, for Congress, for school boards. Get them engaged. Their engagement will spur further engagement. Create a culture among Latino culture of voting! There’s no greater power a person can wield, if done collectively.

    I’m talking about a serious, throw a ton of resources effort at turning Texas blue. There would be huge corollary benefits – Latinos across the country would watch and believe, or heck, come to Texas to train and then head back to Georgia, to Arizona, to Idaho. It would hone the democratic ground game. It would keep momentum going. Take the fight to them. There’s money to spare, so it’s a matter of getting people into action.

    If Dems can reliably hold Florida, Texas, and Ohio, there is no longer a Republican party worth talking about. By force there will be a new, saner party.

    And sanity is what we should all be passionately fighting for. It’s under fucking threat!

  75. 75
    Full Metal Wingnut says:

    @Corner Stone: Did he actually write that? Dramatic much?

  76. 76
    redshirt says:

    Speaking of WV, last Dem win there for President was 96, where Clinton won handily. Check out the electoral map for 96, it’s crazy! Clinton won Louisiana, Arkansas, Missouri, Kentucky, Tennessee, and West Virgina. But not Virginia or North Carolina.

    I think Hillary has a shot at WV.

  77. 77
    redshirt says:

    Sorry to double post, and it’s sad that this might be true, but another good way to kill the Republican party post haste would be to run a charismatic white southern Democrat. Any of those around? It might serve to provide the justification for a significant percentage of current white Republicans to jump ship, sadly. But I’ll take it if it puts that party of traitors in the ground.

  78. 78
    huckster says:

    As a Georgian, I can say that I don’t see the state turning blue in the near future. In 92 Clinton won largely on the coattails of a popular governor (Zell Miller) who campaigned for him, and the fact that Ross Perot took votes from Bush, who took a lot of heat from Newt Gingrich for his tax increase. Wyche Fowler, the Dem incumbent senator found himself in a runoff with the late Paul Coverdell, and lost largely because the President-elect stumped for him.

    The state party is non-existent as a factor in winning statewide and the racial animus is such that a politician like Reed (my former state legislator) would stand no chance. The only hope for Georgia is for white, moderate, republicans to become disgusted with the GOP.

    I’m not holding my breath.

  79. 79
    gwangung says:

    @Roger Moore:

    Even if you ignore the racial angle, Latinos look a lot more like Democratic voters than they do like Republicans. They skew younger and poorer than the general population, and those are both groups that lean Democratic. If there’s something that requires Republican xenophobia as an explanation, it’s why poor Southern whites tend to vote Republican when their demographics suggest they should lean Democratic.

    And don’t forget the socio-political angle for 1st and second generation Latinos. They emigrated from class conflicted societies, where authoritarian, big money politicians crushed the poor. Republicans, with their support for the rich, are getting hamstrung at that; Dems shouldn’t emphasize any policies that aid corporations and the wealthy.

  80. 80
    rikyrah says:

    President Obama made the South irrelevant electorally. It’s nice that he won Florida and Virginia – but he’d still be President if he hadn’t.

    Makes me smile everytime I think about it.

  81. 81
    comrade scott's agenda of rage says:

    @FlyingToaster:

    This. Except I live in the (now) reddest county in the state (Osage). The demographics here are not changing in a blue direction. Hell, Kansas gets more Hispanic immigrants than we do.

    The state is run by Repups and the state Democratic party is a joke. We’ll be a replacement state in the Neo Confederacy for any “defectors” like VA and FL.

    Again, ain’t gonna be blue for a looooong time. I live here, I see it every day.

  82. 82
    Supernumerary Charioteer says:

    @Beth in VA: Hopefully we don’t fall for the ‘You’re in good hands! I’m not crazy, I’m a business Republican! And whatever you do, don’t look at what my Attorney General or the state legislature is doing!’ horseshit again.

  83. 83
    Avolo says:

    @Schlemizel: I’m from Georgia and chose to campaign for President Obama in FL this go around because we weren’t making a contest of it here; so here’s my two cents. Georgia continues to evolve and in part because of demographic changes we may begin to swing purple in national elections in the next few cycles. And Georgia certainly has more than its fair share of low information bigots — I guess that’s what you’re getting at with your jingle — so I guess it proves you’re not a bigot, I mean knowing the jingle and all. But, I guess your song and your attitude about Georgia doesn’t prove the majority of Georgian’s are bigots either. So why don’t we Democrats from all parts of the country continue to follow Howard Dean’s philosophy and contest every state including Georgia. The Nobel Peace Prize recipient who gave us the bending to justice idea you cited, Reverend King, was from Georgia, and about a mile from his birthplace in Atlanta is the Carter Center where another Nobel Peace Prize recipient, President Jimmy Carter, the last truly liberal President (and still the only peanut farmer!) to hold the office continues to do outstanding work for the Democratic cause. So if we’re making it close in Georgia in 2016 I hope you’ll come “marching” back to Georgia to help us win it. Meanwhile Dale Carnegie has this book on “Winning Friends” and such you might want to check out.

  84. 84
    AxelFoley says:

    @Ron Thompson:

    Now we need to recapture what was lost due to the President’s inept performance in his first two years

    LOL, seriously, fool?

  85. 85
    Ron Thompson says:

    @AxelFoley:

    Seriously, fool.

    Do those of you who commented on my comment think the President did a brilliant job in 2009 and 2010? Because that does sort of raise the question of why millions of Democratic-leaning voters stayed home and there was a Republican landslide in 2010.

    The President pissed away all of 2009 trying to get Chuck Grassley on board for the healthcare bill. He appointed Timothy Geithner as Treasury Secretary, and did nothing to prosecute the banksters and the criminals in the Bush Administration. The Republican Party was on life-support, but after two years of Obama it roared back to take control of the House and of the redistricting process in Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan, North Carolina, Virginia, and Wisconsin, with disastrous results for the Democrats which will last a decade or more. Mostly as a result, the President agreed to extend the Bush tax cuts for another two years, and created the “fiscal cliff” situation.

    Was that genius, or ineptness?

    Loyalty is a fine thing, when it’s reciprocal. When it’s not, it’s just sycophancy.

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