Monday, November 08, 2004

Not All Michaels Are Fat and Stupid

Especially not this one. Michael Barone is one of the smartest political analysts we've ever had in this country, and he is encyclopedically well informed. If enough people read post-election stuff like this, we'll be a lot better off next time around. Here's a niblet:

The line among political insiders was that turnout would increase from 2000 and that higher turnout would favor John Kerry. Right and wrong. Turnout was up 11 percent, but Bush's total votes were up 18 percent from 2000, while Kerry's were up just 10 percent from Al Gore's. The Democrats relied on labor unions and billionaire-financed 527 organizations for their turnout drives. They depended primarily on paid workers, some of whom were very good and some very poor; one in Ohio signed up Mary Poppins to vote and was paid with crack cocaine. The Bush campaign built its own organization and relied primarily on volunteers, some 1.2 million of them. Volunteers were given varied tasks and numeric goals and were repeatedly tested. They delivered on Election Day.

On election night, most observers were focusing on central cities to see how many votes the Democrats would roll up. Working for Fox News, I concentrated on smaller counties in Florida, Ohio, and other target states in which all or nearly all the precincts had reported results. I found a clear pattern in state after state. In small and medium-sized counties, turnout was up, by 10 percent, 20 percent, even 40 percent in fast-growing areas, and the Bush percentage was up as well, by 2, 4, or even 8 percentage points. Aggregate those increases, and you have more new Republican votes than new Democratic votes in Cuyahoga or Broward counties. That, repeated over and over again, is the story of this election. Karl Rove's strategy of concentrating on increasing Republican turnout worked.

The rest is even better. Read or Die!

I saw this a number of places, but the last one I remember was Instapundit

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