With the polls showing the presidential race slightly to Bush's advantage, the result is all going to come down to campaigning, the debates and turnout.
Strictly on the merits of Bush's record in office, this should have been any Democrats race to lose by now. That it's even close is a failure of the Democratic party to relentlessly sell the idea that the President has failed.
The objective facts of
That they are giving Bush a pass on this mediocre record is simply stunning, but also a tribute to what an effective political operation he is part of.
Bush has taken advantage of several key facts about American politics;
It's not as if Kerry is a terrible campaigner; there have surely been many worse in the modern era, but in comparison to Bill Clinton and George Bush his political instincts are lacking. And thus the episodic panic in Democratic ranks.
One of the saving graces the Democrats have left is that there still appear to be 15-20% of the electorate who are persuadable, some because they haven't yet paid much attention to the campaign.
But to take wrap up the 3/4 of persuadables it will take to win the White House, the Democrats have to get themselves a succinct message first.
That message has to be the failure of Bush as president. Some in the press will wring their hands about this being negative campaigning, and may even point to polls showing that voters disapprove of negative campaigns.
Voters may say they don't like negative campaigns, but there's precious little evidence that too many people are concerned enough to let it affect their vote.
Drawing attention to Bush's record may be negative campaigning, which is negative, but it's also campaigning on the issues. These two things are not mutually exclusive, contrary to what you may hear in the press. And it's Kerry's best option. That has to be positive.Posted by robe0419 at September 16, 2004 10:37 PM | TrackBack