State in Play
A Battle for Congress
This is part of a series of articles looking at House and Senate races in the battleground state of Ohio and other developments there that highlight the forces shaping politics in the 2010 midterm campaign.
"Hi, I’m Steve Driehaus,” he said, leaning down to shake a woman’s hand. “I’m your congressman, and I need your help in November.”
While all candidates ask voters for support, the pitch from Mr. Driehaus is more pointed than most.
He is among the class of Democrats who face the challenge of running in difficult districts without the same enthusiasm and expected voter turnout [BLACK TURNOUT --- SEE BELOW!] that helped the party expand its Congressional majorities when led the ticket two years ago.
The race highlights a central question of this election cycle:
What chance do Democrats have of defending House districts, like the one here in Cincinnati and a dozen more across the country, where, by narrow margins in 2008, they captured seats held by Republicans?
To hold these seats and to protect others that are vulnerable, Democrats are trying to re-create the Obama campaign machinery and expand turnout beyond a typical midterm election to compete with a particularly motivated Republican base.
The prospects for Democrats holding on to the House, and perhaps even the Senate, could rest with whether legions of first-time or occasional voters who supported Mr. Obama, including a high percentage of African-Americans, return to the polls this year.
The contest in Ohio’s First Congressional District offers one of the best case studies in the country. The campaign is among a dozen rematches in this election cycle: Steve Chabot, who was first elected in the 1994 Republican sweep, lost his seat to Mr. Driehaus by four percentage points — 14,772 votes — and is fighting to win it back.
“I think people are ready for a change from the change,” Mr. Chabot said in an interview at his storefront headquarters, decorated with signs and banners from his previous races. “The change that they’ve seen isn’t what a lot of people had in mind.”
If Republicans are to win control of the House, party leaders are relying on candidates like Mr. Chabot to whittle away the 39-seat Democratic majority. Their strategy is rooted in the belief that the Republican base is significantly more energized than it was two years ago, particularly because of the influence of Tea Party activists and at least a share of independent voters who have soured on the leadership of Democrats.
I'M GLAD THEY DID MENTION THE FACT THAT - DESPITE 2 WARS AND A RECESSION AND A STOCK MARKET CRASH --- AND DESPITE PUTSEPNDING MCCAIN AND SPENDING CLOSE TO ONE BILLION DOLLARS ---- OBAMA WON LARGELY BASED ON TURNOUT - BLACK TURNOUT
THAT'S ONE EFFIN' HUGE REASON THE GOP WILL SWEEP.
One of the MAJOR reasons Obama beat McCain was the black turnout; they need to repeat this to have any chance of holding the House and the Senate.
Here's the back-story:THE MARGIN OF VICTORY FOR OBAMA WAS THE BLACK VOTE.
In last year’s presidential election, younger blacks voted in greater proportions than whites for the first time and black women turned out at a higher rate than any other racial, ethnic and gender group, a census analysis released Monday confirmed.
As a result, in the election that produced the nation’s first black president, the historic gap between black and white voter participation rates over all virtually evaporated.
Total turnout in 2008 was about the same as it was in 2004, about 64 percent of voting age citizens.
But with Barack Obama on the ballot, the makeup of the 131 million who voted last year was markedly different.
While the number of non-Hispanic white voters remained roughly the same, 2 million more blacks, 2 million more Latinos and 600,000 more Asians turned out.
Compared with 2004, the voting rate for black, Asian and Hispanic voters increased by about four percentage points.
The rate for whites declined by one percentage point.
REPEAT: THE MARGIN OF VICTORY FOR OBAMA WAS THE BLACK VOTE.
AND IT WASN'T AN ACCIDENT; POLITICO - 10/6/08, JUST A MONTH BEFORE THE ELECTION:IN 2008, THE LEFT HAD A BLACK MAN ON THE TOP OF THE TICKET, AND TOOK ADVANTAGE OF IT. (THEY ALSO LIED, AND TOLD THE ELECTORATE THAT OBAMA - THE MOST LEFTIST CANDIDATE EVER NOMINATED - WAS A CENTRIST.)
As Barack Obama trekked through the Philadelphia suburbs, Northern Virginia and Greensboro, N.C., in recent days, his campaign was ramping up a massive parallel effort in big cities like Detroit, Cleveland and Miami.
In the largely black precincts of those metropolises, radio broadcasts blast constant reminders to vote for Obama, field organizers swarm, and megastars including Jay-Z, Russell Simmons and LeBron James have led massive rallies, working to reach not just the substantial portion of the black community who regularly come out to vote but also the younger people and others who have never before cast a ballot.
Though the rallies are publicized, much of the advertising directed at black voters isn't. Get-out-the-vote ads on radio and television aren't released to the media, and the number of new voters Obama has registered is a closely held secret. He is, however, leaving no stone unturned when it comes to registering African-American voters. The campaign has, for example, a major initiative aimed at turning barbershops and beauty parlors into voter registration offices. This week, Kimora Lee Simmons' E! Network reality show, "Life in the Fab Lane," carried a campaign ad at the bottom of the screen reminding citizens to register to vote.
Monday morning, the deadline for registration in several key states, Obama appeared on two of the most widely heard African-American radio programs, where hosts implored listeners to register to vote and Obama directed them to his campaign's registration website.
"The African-American vote can be a game-changer in all sorts of states," Obama told host Steve Harvey. "In Florida, in Indiana, in North Carolina, in Ohio. I just want people to look at the numbers."
Little of this targeted outreach has produced images of Obama addressing black crowds or mingling with black officials, and most has gone unnoticed by the broader electorate.
"If you didn't notice it, then you probably weren't the target," said Obama spokesman Corey Ealons of the targeted advertising. He described the campaign's general voter registration drive — which has focused heavily on young voters, as well as African-Americans — as "a very extensive effort and that's been one of the highlights and major focuses of the campaign."
IN 2010, THEY DON'T HAVE A BLACK ON TOP OF THE TICKET,
ANOTHER REASON IS THE FACT THAT INDEPENDENTS WHO VOTED FOR OBAMA BECAUSE THEY BELIEVED HIM WHEN HE SAID HE WAS A POST-RACIAL POST-PARTISAN MODERATE NOW KNOW THAT THEY WERE LIED TO, AND THEY'RE ANGRY AND GOING TO VOTE GOP.
ADD TO THAT GOP ENTHUSIASM AND WE HAVE THE MAKINGS OF THE GREATEST SWEEP IN USA HISTORY.
THERE'S ONLY TWO THINGS THAT CAN PREVENT THIS:
ONE IS THIS: OBAMA ATTACKING IRAN BEFORE LABOR DAY.
THE OTHER IS THIS: MASSIVE VOTER FRAUD IN KEY RACES.
CIVIL RIGHTS LAWYER BARTLE BULL IS AFRAID THIS MIGHT HAPPEN: ZIP AHEAD TO THE 3:50 MARK TO HEAR HIS WARNING:
WITHOUT VOTER FRAUD OR A STATE OF WAR OBAMA AND HIS COMRADES CAN'T WIN: MAYBE HE'LL TRY BOTH!