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THE MUSINGS OF A TRADITIONAL SOUTHERN DEMOCRAT

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Location: Douglas, Coffee Co., The Other Georgia, United States

Sid in his law office where he sits when meeting with clients. Observant eyes will notice the statuette of one of Sid's favorite Democrats.

Monday, June 08, 2015

Hillary Clinton Traces Friendly Path, Troubling Party - Already, it is causing consternation among Democrats in conservative states that could be given short shrift by her campaign or bypassed altogether. Her advisors believe the so-called Obama coalition of young, nonwhite and female voters is transferable to another Democrat.


Bill Clinton, then the Democratic nominee for president, greeted supporters in 1992 in Carrollton, Ky. His road to the White House took him through many Southern and border states, where he won the support of swing voters.

From The New York Times:

WASHINGTON — Hillary Rodham Clinton appears to be dispensing with the nationwide electoral strategy that won her husband two terms in the White House and brought white working-class voters and great stretches of what is now red-state America back to Democrats.
 
Instead, she is poised to retrace Barack Obama’s far narrower path to the presidency: a campaign focused more on mobilizing supporters in the Great Lakes states and in parts of the West and South than on persuading undecided voters.
 
Mrs. Clinton’s aides say it is the only way to win in an era of heightened polarization, when a declining pool of voters is truly up for grabs. Her liberal policy positions, they say, will fire up Democrats, a less difficult task than trying to win over independents in more hostile territory — even though a broader strategy could help lift the party with her.
This early in the campaign, however, forgoing a determined outreach effort to all 50 states, or even most of them, could mean missing out on the kind of spirited conversation that can be a unifying feature of a presidential election. And it could leave Mrs. Clinton, if she wins, with the same difficulties Mr. Obama has faced in governing with a Republican-controlled Congress.
 
Already, it is causing consternation among Democrats in conservative states that could be given short shrift by her campaign or bypassed altogether.
 
When Bill Clinton reclaimed the presidency for Democrats in 1992, his road to the White House ran through Southern and Southern-border states filled with what were then a precious commodity: swing voters.
 
Twenty years later, Mr. Obama convincingly won a second term without competing in states like Kentucky, Louisiana, Tennessee or West Virginia that powered Mr. Clinton. And because of his strong appeal among liberals, Mr. Obama did so even while losing among independent voters.
As Mrs. Clinton intensifies her campaign for the Democratic nomination, it is clear from her left-leaning policy stances, her hiring and her focus on data-driven organizing that her strategy is modeled on Mr. Obama’s, not her husband’s.
 
To the architects of the Obama strategy, Mrs. Clinton’s approach is not mere homage: It is unavoidable, given that there are few genuine independents now and that technology increasingly lets campaigns pinpoint their most likely voters.
 
“If you run a campaign trying to appeal to 60 to 70 percent of the electorate, you’re not going to run a very compelling campaign for the voters you need,” said David Plouffe, a top Obama strategist who has consulted informally with Mrs. Clinton.
 
Mrs. Clinton has said repeatedly that she does not want a lonely victory in 2016; she wants to elect Democrats down the ballot. A group of her senior aides met recently with officials at the Democratic House, Senate and governor campaign arms to brief them on the aides’ research and plans for her message and organization. And Senate Democrats are hopeful that she will lift their prospects, because there is considerable overlap in crucial states: The results in Colorado, Florida, Nevada, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Ohio and Wisconsin will almost certainly determine both who wins the White House and which party controls the Senate.

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