paulsimmons

Person #2547: 112 Posts

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  1. Re: Jeff Weaver, per David's Comment above. (0 Replies)

    Weaver (as a pro) is doing what campaign managers do when their principal is subject to morality-play meltdowns: He becomes the voice of the candidate’s tantrums, thus insulating his client.

  2. Here's a good overview (0 Replies)

    from Jon Ralston in the Reno Gazette-Journal. Ralston is considered to be the gold standard in Nevada Democratic political analysis. I quote at length:

    The kindling had been lit long before they arrived at that ballroom – by Sanders and his team. They sued the state party over meaningless and baseless nonsense, quickly thrown out by a judge. And even after Reid persuaded Sanders to put out a unity statement on the eve of the convention, his supporters – or a core of them – didn’t care. They had one goal in mind: disruption.

    The Vermont senator here and elsewhere has tapped into a real anger in the grassroots, but he started a wildfire he cannot control…

    …The simple story is this: Sanders lost to Clinton by 5 percentage points in the Feb. 20 caucus and has been working to reverse it ever since. He pushed more delegates to the county conventions a few weeks ago but his team was out-organized by Clinton’s Nevada contingent on Saturday.

    Team Sanders left almost 500 delegate spots unfilled at the Paris, allowing Clinton to reassert the caucus results. Sanders lost, plain and simple; the rest is white noise (like yelling the loudest for a voice vote) and sour grapes (like complaining an election you lost was stolen).

    Yes, Reid controls the state party and the chairwoman. And, yes, Reid wants Clinton to win and did even before he officially endorsed her, all the while being as fair to Sanders as he could before he helped her in the caucus.

    But even Reid did not know how many delegates would show up for either side at the Paris; he and his team knew the Sandersistas planned to destabilize the event and they wanted to try to control it.

    Even if the Sanders folks were right on every complaint and won every vote they lost – and they weren’t and couldn’t – maybe the senator would have picked up a few delegates. But he didn’t. He lost…

  3. Depending on the town there are two options (0 Replies)

    Some town voter history lists (like Boston) go back several elections; for other municipalities you can request that the town sort against past elections, specifying by election how far back one wants to go.

    Speaking for myself, and specific to party-building, I prefer the raw lists.

    Without going into the pros and cons of various NGP VAN products (and I like VoteBuilder’s turf-cutting application), municipal party-building can be done for less cost using locally available lists; and by using the raw voter list one can avoid over-targeting.

    The trade-off is that the initial voter contact is largely dependent upon personal relationships between local activists and targeted voters. That said, if done correctly, organic growth results, in turn resulting in a better foundation for get-out-the-vote operations.

    IMHO, one of the reasons behind low turnouts is the tendency of too many campaigns to ignore those voters outside a given contact universe.

  4. There are three separate lists (2 Replies)

    …all available from municipal election authorities.

    The resident list, which generally only cites registered voter status.

    The voter list, which lists name, street address, ward/precinct address, voter status (active or inactive), and political party of registered voters.

    The voter history list, which lists those voters who cast ballots and the elections in which they voted.

    For purposes of party-building my suggestion to mark-bail was to obtain the voter list.

  5. Actually, it isn't (0 Replies)

    The trend lines on that Clinton graph are only marked in half-year increments. The interactive version is here.

  6. That's only true for Party Committees, James (1 Reply)

    For local stuff – and remember we’re talking raw voters, not voter history – Galvin’s office refers people to their local election authorities.

    Apropos of which, the same applies to the raw voter lists of a given municipality.

    For Party-building purposes Democrats should consider that a lot of people on the voter list never cast a ballot. For example, as of the 2016 Presidential Primary, there were 382,946 registered voters in Boston, of whom 95,506 have never voted at any time since 1997 per my Boston list.

    That’s a lot of deferred outreach, which is why I suggested getting the raw voter list.

  7. If your town has more than 65K voters (0 Replies)

    …Microsoft Access will do the job just fine.

  8. Forget Votebuilder (3 Replies)

    For what you want to do, it’s way too expensive.

    Go to your town clerk’s office (or whomever administers local elections) and request the voter list in text format. Depending on the town, that list is available for free or at a very low cost. Assuming that your voter list has less than 65,000 names on it, suck the list into Excel. (Older versions of Excel get buggy at that point)

    Among the file headers – which are systematized by the Secretary of State’s Elections Division – is “Party”.

    Sort for “D” in the Party fields, and voila, you have your list of registered Democrats by precinct and street address.

    Some people voluntarily submit their phone numbers, but I would advise that only people known to those voters contact them by telephone.

  9. Not Democrats. Democratic activists. (3 Replies)

    Insofar as specific suggestions are concerned:

    1.) Rebuild self-sustaining and accountable ward and precinct operations from the ground up.

    2.) Redirect field operations, in particular canvassing, to neighbor-to-neighbor outreach.

    3.) Recognize that, in an era of cell phones and caller ID, phone banking has limited utility unless the caller has (or can establish) an organic connection with the contacted voter.

    And conceptually:

    1.) Consider why Party affiliation is shrinking, and the majority of Massachusetts voters are Unenrolled.

    2.) Case study the geographic and socioeconomic-specific dynamics of the Republican resurgence in places like Worcester County.

    3.) Case study the reasons why one-half of Charlie Baker’s margin of victory came from his increased support (relative to 2010) in Boston.

    4.) Invest in a reputable pollster to find out how many Democrats know the identity of any of their Ward/Town Democratic Committee members.

    In matters of institutional culture (and this goes to the class issue) ask why for all its pretenses to the contrary, Massachusetts has such a high and increasing rate of income inequality, and the Commonwealth spends less than the national average on public education.

    I repeat: The issue is not rank and file Democrats, but the fact that there are, shall we say, discrepancies between rhetoric and reality, which tend to be substantively unaddressed to the detriment of the Party.

  10. From the same article: (0 Replies)

    …Clinton rules mean guilty until proven innocent, then and now. The Washington media is a machine that transforms crap about Clintons into headlines, and Trump is a bottomless supply of crap.

    Along with that, Clinton being Clinton, and Clintonworld being Clintonworld, there is likely to be no shortage of missteps, malapropisms, unforced errors, and poorly chosen surrogates to keep the media busy even without Trump’s help. Stories purporting to (finally) bring Clinton down never lack for clicks. She is, after all, the most disliked national politician in American life … except Donald Trump.

    So there you have it: an obvious choice that numerous institutions and individuals are committed to making as difficult, as unpleasant, and as drawn-out as possible. It augurs a substance-free, policy-averse, crap-happy campaign season, degraded even by the diminished standards of contemporary US politics. Wake me when it’s over.

    …and that is what keeps me up at night.

  11. That's because there is an anti-Republican consensus in national elections (1 Reply)

    that plays out in the electoral college in states where black and (increasingly Latino) voters constitute margins of victory. I note that “anti-Republican” does not automatically equate to “pro-Democratic”. Lower turnout in downballot races illustrate how low enthusiasm plays out, to Republican advantage.

    Had the Republicans, post-G. W. Bush, not become so increasingly anti-Latino, thus swinging that cohort across intra-ethnic boundaries to the Democrats – Latinos were, prior to 2008, swing voters and increasingly voting Republican – Republicans would have a larger base in Presidential elections.

    The failure to “attract Reagan Dems” is understandable, given the hard-wired class bigotry in Democratic outreach structures. This also plays out locally. A Massachusetts example is Republican gains in Worcester County, due to the condescending field aversion of the state Democratic party.

  12. In that case it might have been better to use Standard English (1 Reply)

    …rather than legalese. A reasonable person might make a conclusion in a way precisely opposite from your intended meaning.

    Stare decisis does not mean “leaving things be”; it means looking at and citing (legally) decided examples from the past.

    Remember that legal terms are meant to be specific within their context. The context in this sense is political, but nevertheless a reasonable person will presume that the precedent (Prohibition in this case) makes a case to abolish criminalizing intoxicants.

    By using “stare decisis” you employed a term that undercut your argument.

  13. Are you certain that stare decisis is the term you want to use? (1 Reply)

    …since it means determining points in light of precedent.

    Given that the most obvious precedent hat comes to mind is Prohibition…

  14. Senator Warren described a symptom; Krugman diagnosed the disease (1 Reply)

    What occurred was systemic corruption, based upon the assumption of risk-free operations by brokerage houses and investment banks. (Note that “risk-free” did not apply to individual investors.) This trend started in investment banking and spread throughout the financial instruments community, including the big commercial banks.

    This cultural corruption can be illustrated by the fact that union-busting, the destruction of pensions, and mass layoffs were often subsidized by union pension funds.

    The result was a parasitic mindset including, but not limited to, the management of the big banks; it was much more systemic than that.

    Good analyses of the macronomics of all this, readable by the lay public, are by Krugman, Gary Gorton, and Raghuram Rajan.

    Senator Warren is by training a financial instruments attorney, not an economist. One can stipulate the validity of her criticisms of the large banks, while giving Paul Krugman the props for macroeconomic analysis.

  15. East Boston (unofficial) results are linked below (0 Replies)

    per East Boston.com.

    Lydia Edwards came in first in East Boston (782 votes), with Boncore second (589 votes), and Hwang third (499 votes).

    Rather than demographics-is-destiny (and Eastie Latino politics aren’t necessarily progressive), what happened in Ward 1 was a simple case of a chopped-up base.

  16. Clinton's support among nonwhite voters has not in any way collapsed (0 Replies)

    From the New York Times Wisconsin Exit Poll:

    Among white voters:
    Clinton – 41%
    Sanders – 59%

    Among black voters:
    Clinton – 71%
    Sanders – 29%

    Latino, Asian, and “Others”, at 3%, 2%, and 2% of the Democratic electorate respectively, were statistically too few to be listed statistically in the poll.

  17. There is now a tentative State decision to deny extending permits to Cape Wind (1 Reply)

    From the Cape Cod Times:

    A state board on Tuesday issued a tentative decision denying the extension of permits that would allow Cape Wind to build an electricity transmission line to connect its proposed offshore wind farm to land, further complicating the beleaguered project’s already grim prospects.

    Members of the Energy Facilities Siting Board will meet next week to finalize a decision on whether or not to renew nine state and local permits the board initially granted as a so-called “super permit” to the offshore wind energy developer in 2009. The permits allowed Cape Wind to construct a transmission line through state-owned territory in Nantucket Sound and Hyannis Harbor and across multiple Cape towns.

    A link to the tentaative decision is here.

  18. Sanders did not skip the South; his outreach backfired (1 Reply)

    Sanders put a lot of resources into the South; for example he spent more money into South Carolina and had more paid staff than Clinton..

    Alas, Sanders efforts tend to reinforce his negatives among black voters, as also happened in Illinois and Ohio.

  19. Time to lance this boil (0 Replies)

    …given that 33% of Sanders supporters say they will refuse to vote for Clinton, should she be the Democratic nominee, according to a Wall Steet Journal NBC News Poll.

    Let the following suffice to address this matter:

    How privileged do you need to be to imagine that it’s a good idea to risk the actual lives of vulnerable Americans because you “hate” Clinton so much that you vow to stay home if Sanders doesn’t get the nomination? How protected from the consequences of a Trump presidency do you need to be to think your hatred of Clinton constitutes, as I saw someone say earlier this week, an “inviolable principle,” meaning that it’s more important than the lives of vulnerable Americans? That all applies equally to any Clinton supporters saying the same about Sanders. (We have yet to see the full weight of American anti-Semitism aimed at Sanders, and if he wins the nomination, we most certainly will.)

    Vote for whoever you like in the primary. But let’s step away from vicious attacks and hatred. Let’s step away from buying into debunked conservative propaganda about Clinton’s trustworthiness. Let’s look at the candidates’ actual proposals and weigh those proposals’ actual strengths and weaknesses. Let’s respect each other’s choices in the primaries.