Skip to comments.In 2016, GOP Needs a Candidate Voters Believe In
Posted on 11/18/2012 5:01:56 AM PST by Kaslin
In the wake of Mitt Romney's loss, many Republicans say the GOP must make far-reaching changes to be competitive in future elections. White voters are a smaller and smaller part of the electorate, they point out, while Latinos and other minorities are growing as a percentage of the voting public. Unless the Republican Party reinvents itself to appeal to those voters, the argument goes, the GOP can get used to being out of power.
There's something to that. The electorate is changing, and the Republican Party needs to keep up with the times. But the more fundamental answer to the GOP's problems could be much simpler than that. To win the next time, Republicans need to find a really good candidate. Just listen to the masterminds of Barack Obama's victories in 2008 and 2012.
On Thursday afternoon, the Obama campaign held its last conference call for reporters. Toward the end of the call, the three top officials in Obama's re-election effort -- David Axelrod, Jim Messina and David Plouffe -- were asked what will happen to the mighty Obama campaign now. What next for the enormous campaign infrastructure, with its massive databases and voter profiles? Will it go to a new candidate?
"You can't just transfer this," said senior adviser Plouffe. "People are not going to spend hours away from their families, and their jobs, contributing financially when it's hard for them to do it, unless they believe in the candidate."
"All of this, the door knocks ... the contributions made, the phone calls made, were because these people believed in Barack Obama," Plouffe continued. "And so for candidates who want to try and build a grassroots campaign, it's not going to happen because there's a list or because you have the best technology. That's not how this works. They have to build up that kind of emotional appeal so that people are willing to go out and spend the time and their resources and provide their talents because they believe in someone. ... The reason those people got involved was because they believed in Barack Obama. It was a relationship between them and our candidate."
Plouffe is right. He and Axelrod and Messina could have created the most awesome campaign machinery in the world, and it would have failed had the candidate not been able to forge an emotional connection with enough voters to win. Obama could do that, especially with blacks and Latinos and young people, but also with a significant portion of white voters.
Mitt Romney, on the other hand, appears not to have excited any big group. Yes, he won the support of 59 percent of white voters, but there are indications that whites actually stayed away from the polls in large numbers. Overall, Romney won fewer votes than John McCain's doomed 2008 campaign.
"The 2012 elections actually weren't about a demographic explosion with nonwhite voters," writes analyst Sean Trende of RealClearPolitics. "Instead, they were about a large group of white voters not showing up. ... The reason this electorate looked so different from the 2008 electorate is almost entirely attributable to white voters staying home."
Trende is not sure why so many whites didn't vote. Looking only at Ohio, he suggests many did not like Obama but were turned off by Romney, or at least the negative picture of Romney created by Obama's attack ads. So they did nothing on Election Day.
There is much data still to come in from Tuesday; the popular vote figures and exit poll details aren't yet final. But it's fair to say Romney's problems stemmed as much from his failure to appeal to white voters as his failure to appeal to any other voters. He lost because he did not connect to large swaths of the voting population.
That's where finding a great candidate comes in. Romney is an able, accomplished, intelligent and hard-working man, but Republicans knew from the start he was an imperfect candidate. During the primaries, GOP voters tried every alternative possible before finally settling on Romney. He remained a flawed candidate in the general election.
Now, because of Romney's loss, some are urging that the Republican Party completely remake itself. Some argue that GOP lawmakers must support comprehensive immigration reform and change positions on other issues. The answer, they say, is broad, across-the-board change.
But listen to the Obama team. There is a less complicated lesson to this election. Voters want to believe in a candidate. If Republicans find that candidate, they will win.
Not unless they do something about voter fraud. I got whiff of an article that blew my mind. The main reason the GOP won’t do anything is because of 1982 Consent Decree. It is real!
“In 2016, GOP Needs a Candidate Voters Believe In”
RIGHT NOW the GOP needs Candidates that BELIEVE IN CONSERVATISM enough to speak proudly of their own success!
The voters will follow if you lead them.
This is false.
Romney's only 400,000 votes behind McCain, with plenty of votes left to count.
“But listen to the Obama team. There is a less complicated lesson to this election. Voters want to believe in a candidate. If Republicans find that candidate, they will win”.
Loyalty, despite imperfections, perceived or otherwise, fact or fiction, truth or deception, reality or myth, black or white, all were the mainstay of the Obama campaign.
...and thinking republicans just couldn’t muster any loyalty to anyone, anything, any option, any principle, other than perhaps their own selfish perceptions, rooted in who knows what.
Looking for Reagan is not going to win elections, and elections have consequences. If this election means the party is dead, garnering precious little loyalty, I have a feeling, principled elections are dead, a result of fractured loyalty.
Fully suited in triple layer flame retardant material.
The GOP can ignore its base at its own peril.
Though Sarah Palin saved MeCain from a humiliating loss, a Conservative was not at the top of the 2008 or 2012 ticket.
They had 2 chances and blew it all again, Im done with them. They need to drastically change coarse by way of leadership and if true they need to get to work to kill that decree and grow some balls. From what I can see they are all to happy to get down on thier knees in line wanting to kiss the ring of a fraud
Romney got more votes in Bible Belt States than McCain, or Bush in 2004.
So where is this mythical base that stayed home? Under a rock? On Mars?
I’m watching the late returns coming in carefully to see what there is to the argument that it was a diminished electorate on the Republican side in particular .At least one Freeper has taken up the Daily Kos spin that the turnout will match 2008 when all the late counting, especially CA, is in. Sites differ as to total votes. CNN has made no additions to the totals for about 4 days, though they update at least once in 24 hours. The highest I’ve seen is on Dave Leip at BO63 m +, Romney at 59.4, about 500,000 less than McLain but 2.5 m less than W in ‘04. Whatever the final, this will be a low turnout election, with totals diminished on all side, certainly more diminished on the Obama side. When you consider that it is likely the voting age population went up by 10 m from 2008 to 2012, it is a lock that there were a lot more people of all colors , ages and stripes that could have been won by a better candidate at the top of the ticket (like one who could have hammered Obama on Obama care instead of the one who who had to say “excuse me” every time it was mentioned.)I’ve still got the bottom line that the way Obama governed drove people away by the millions and that he has nothing to build on; there will be no cost to opposing him across the board.
-No more open primaries. Republicans should select Republican Presidential candidates.
-No more Blue State candidates. Both McCain and Romney talked about "reaching across the aisle"...I want a Presidential candidate who wants to Democrats to compromise THEIR principles.
-No more candidates over the age of 60. George W. Bush was 54 when he won as President. The other GOP losers were 68, 73, 73, and 65 respectively. NO MORE OLD GUYS.
-Start the GOP ground game NOW. B. Hussein kept non-stop campaigning from the first time he was elected. The GOP needs to begin their 2016 ground game NOW.
- The GOP pollwatcher movement needs to be much stronger. Quite frankly, we were told this election would be "the most important election of our time". Yet, the GOP leadership is treating this as just another election cycle. "Why, sure we wanted to win, but I'm SOOO looking forward to eating the new French brie at Ben Bradlee and Sally Quinn's next soiree, hee hee hee."
The 2012 election wasn't about "reaching the undecided voters"...it was about getting your base out. While Romney was chasing "undecided" rabbits down holes, B. Hussein was getting his base out and to the polls...twice or more if necessary.
Oh, and one more thing...the Democrats in Congress "are not my good friends from across the aisle"...they're the ENEMY. Those bastards destroyed the greatest economy the world has ever seen, and now they want to turn us into a 3rd World $hit hole, with them in the Dachas while ruling over us. F'THEM!
Still looking for the 69m + you say Obama’s going to get.
Seeing today's GOP on their knees, I don't think it's Obama's knees they want to kiss.
So IOW - at the time of publication it is true. Thank you.
It's not spin, it's math. The definition of spin isn't "Math you don't like."
California as of Nov. 16 still had 1.7 million unprocessed ballots.
Iowa chose Santorum. What’s your excuse for not supporting Santorum. You had a choice - you chose otherwise.
I can do math too - what should Romney have gotten if you take the population growth into account?
Oh, so I suppose your solution for 2016 is to nominate yet another squish moderate who loses.
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