November 4, 2004


Turnout Effort and Kerry, Too, Were G.O.P.'s Keys to Victory (ELISABETH BUMILLER, 11/04/04, NY Times)

In the closing hours of President Bush's campaign for re-election, Karl Rove, his chief political adviser, was obsessed with turning out Republican votes. Late on Monday night, Mr. Rove stood in the cold at a rally in Albuquerque and pulled scraps of paper from his pocket covered with numbers that reassured him that his ground army was in full assault.

"In Nevada, where last time there were 598,000 votes cast, our organization made 130,000 contacts," Mr. Rove said, rattling off the statistics. "That's 100,000 targeted phone calls and knocks on the door of 30,000 targeted households. These are less active Bush-oriented voters, people who have not had a pattern of voting, Democrats, Republicans and independents."

He had similar numbers for Florida, Pennsylvania and every other contested state, all part of his four-year effort to prod the Republicans into matching the high Democratic turnout in presidential elections. "What we're trying to do is get our efforts up to parity," he said.

On Tuesday night, Mr. Rove succeeded, as Mr. Bush was re-elected with a margin of 3.5 million votes, in the first presidential election in modern history with an equal turnout of Democrats and Republicans.

We speculated that was the case but this confirms it. In 2008 the GOP will likely have the majority of the voters for the first time since the 1930's.

Posted by Orrin Judd at November 4, 2004 10:33 AM
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