November 4, 2014

ALLERGIC TO CRAZY:

With Ernst and Gardner, Republicans Think They've Found the Formula (Eleanor Clift, 11/04/4, Daily Beast)

Republicans think they have found the secret sauce to insure victory with candidates Cory Gardner in Colorado and Joni Ernst in Iowa, who go into Election Day with slightly better than even odds they will return two Democratic Senate seats to the Republican fold. Both are energetic and engaging campaigners, and their winning style has received more media attention than their conservative positions, which each has successfully downplayed, to the consternation of Democrats.

"If they win, it will be a victory of style over substance," says Democratic pollster Celinda Lake, who calls them "model candidates" for the GOP. "They leaned into the public, they talked a broader women's agenda, they had women in their ads, and of course Ernst is a woman," says Lake, noting that Ernst has the added advantage of doing well among men, which is not surprising, since "all Republicans have double-digit advantages among men."

What makes Ernst and Gardner potential game changers for the GOP is the way they've navigated the divide within the party between the hard right and more traditional conservatives, holding onto their hard-core base while straying into moderate territory, ground where the GOP's civil war is fought.

Conservatism is an easy sell.  Conservative candidates on the other hand....



MORE:
The Republican Party's Remarkable Non-Transformation (Molly Messick, 11/04/14, NPR)

Sometime after the polls close Tuesday night, we'll find out if Republicans managed a spectacular feat.

The party that lost the last two presidential elections is seeking a comeback, adding control of the Senate to control of the House. Republicans aim to dominate Congress with a fresh presidential election looming in 2016. It would be, in one of the hackneyed phrases of journalism, "a remarkable transformation."

It's better described as a "non-transformation." The GOP has waged this campaign without altering a single one of the major political positions that supposedly doom the party to demographic oblivion.

Posted by at November 4, 2014 4:17 PM
  

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