Anyone with any experience in life, let alone politics know that anything can happen in a month that can change history, let alone two months, six months, a year, or two years. The biggest talking point in mainstream media and to some degree social media is the 2016 presidential race. The mere possibility of a Hillary Clinton run for the White House has them all giddy. Here’s the problem. You place attention, time, energy and especially money on a Hillary Clinton run for 2016; you take away precious resources needed for all the local races between now and the 2014 midterms.
As I’ve blogged before, voter turnout in special elections and midterms is always significantly lower than in the generals. Fact of the matter is, the one strength those on the right have over those on the left is that despite everything, despite frustration with their party, their candidates, their standard of living, they always vote en masse and straight GOP party tickets in all elections. Something those on the left are hard pressed to do.
Now I’m not saying that those in the middle and left need to be as monolithic as those on the right, but they do need to be engaged and pragmatic in all elections. As in the period prior to the 2010 midterms, mainstream media isn’t supporting the Obama agenda. Coverage for the right-wing continues to be more favorable than coverage for the left.
In fact the only coverage the left gets are for those complaining that Obama isn’t delivering for them. He’s not giving them what they want in the manner they want it.
I’ll be frank, I’m not happy with the Obama administration on several factors to include: drone attacks, too slow of a withdrawal from Afghanistan, continued apparent support for Keystone XL, chained CPI, lack of prosecution against Wall Street criminals and those responsible for voter suppression, and a host of other factors. All that being said, I support this president and those on the left running for all local and congressional offices because of the big picture. And as I’ve quoted before from the Stones, “You can’t always get what you want, but if you try sometimes, you might just find you get what you need.”
To not vote for the left, you guarantee a win for the right and I promise you, you get less and worse from them than you will ever get from the left.
The right has another advantage, money and fanatical lemmings doing what they are told to do. We need to focus our time, energy and money in a smarter and more effective way than they do. We are faced with gerrymandered GOP Districts for Congress and state legislative districts in Red states. That is a difficult challenge, but by no means impossible. Again, we must be smarter and more pragmatic.
South Carolina’s first Congressional District is a gerrymandered Republican District. Democrat Elizabeth Colbert Busch is polling ahead of Mark Stanford in this district. It’s a combination of the fact he isn’t that popular and that she is a moderate Democrat and successful business person. Someone Republicans can support if they have to.
Many on the left hate moderate and conservative Democrats. In many cases they have good reason, but a moderate-conservative Democrat who can win in a gerrymandered Republican district is far better than a Tea Party Republican in that same district. We need to face reality and be pragmatic. As popular and better a progressive agenda is, it doesn’t always sell to many in this country. The more tea party types in Congress and state houses, the more obstruction we can expect from a progressive agenda. That is reality.
Nate Silver essentially says we have no chance of taking the House back in 2014. Studies show that for this to happen, Democrats must outperform Republican counterparts by at least 6 points. So what can we do to prove Nate wrong?
Get Democrats to register now and constantly check to make sure their registration remains valid.
Make sure all Democrats take advantage of early voting, or get out to the polls on Election Day and prepare to make a day of it.
Educate everyone via social media on the polling and the issues at hand to encourage Democrats and Independents and even some Republicans to vote for the Democratic Candidate.
Discourage those opting to sit the election out or vote third-party, or do a protest vote. Each one who does that is giving a vote to the Republicans. That is a fact borne out by an analysis of electoral history in this nation. Protest votes and third-party votes don’t work and only cause harm to the progressive agenda.
Donate directly to candidates in your congressional districts or other contested congressional districts. Money does make a difference. While the right has corporate America funding their races, we have only ourselves.
When you’re done tweeting, blogging and posting on Facebook, get out and get active. Only boots on the ground will get this job done.
Finally, stop the lame in-fighting and conspiracy theories floating around in cyberspace. Stay focus and pragmatic and keep your eyes on the prize, a Democratic win across the country in 2014.
History is prologue to the future, 2010 is our history and 2014 is our future.
As Ed would say, “Let’s get to work!”