September 4, 2004

MADISON SQUARE GARDEN--SLAUGHTERHOUSE OF MYTHS:

27 million watched Bush accept nod (Chicago Tribune, September 4, 2004)

More than 27 million viewers watched President Bush accept his party's nomination Thursday night at the Republican National Convention in New York, 3.1 million more than watched his rival, Sen. John Kerry, address the Democratic National Convention in July.

There has been no more ludicrous storyline in political journalism over the last four years than that the Democrats will benefit in '04 from their more highly motivated base.


MORE:
Letter from New York (Farai Chideya, September 4, 2004, SF Chronicle)

A typical conversation went like this:

Guest A: Ohmygod. Bush screwed McCain so hard in the 2000 primary, why is he kissing Bush's butt?

Guest B: Pass the vodka.

Guest A: I mean George W. all but called him an insane Vietnam vet.

Guest B: Pass the vodka.

Guest A: And you know McCain is personal friends with Kerry.

Guest B to Guest C: Can you pass the vodka? This is giving me a headache.

The guests seem stunned by, but impressed with, the ability of the Bush campaign to take people who have never shown much personal or ideological affinity for President Bush (and Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger would fall among these) and turn them into Zombies-for-Bush.

Near the end of the night's broadcast, I took a poll. How many people thought Kerry was going to win?

The room contained liberal and Democratic voters of different races, national origins, incomes, professions and generations. Not a single solitary one raised a hand.

My stomach did a little flip-flop. I'd underestimated the depth of John F. Kerry's problem, his lack, to quote a phrase from the Bush I years, of the "vision thing." No one can win the presidency without mobilizing the base, and Kerry's base, uninspired and dispirited, is weakening.

Posted by Orrin Judd at September 4, 2004 8:02 PM
Comments

Kerry never motivated his base. Bush is motivating both bases.

Posted by: David Cohen at September 4, 2004 10:22 PM

Excellent comment, David.

Posted by: jim hamlen at September 4, 2004 10:48 PM

Kerry's base remains motivated by hate.

Bush/Rove motivated the swingers.

Guest B must have been Ted Kennedy. At least Teddy was acknowledged by Zell.

Posted by: Genecis at September 5, 2004 11:59 AM
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