Republican Party

All Politics Is State and Local Politics

Here's Tommy Christopher with a more elaborate case for something I coincidentally mentioned in my column yesterday about state and local politics and the Republican effort to steal elections:

If people really don’t want their votes suppressed, people in states which voted for Barack Obama twice, if the American people really wanted a Democratic House of Representatives by more than a million votes, then how is it that Republicans are even in a position to do any of this? What do these states have in common?

Obviously, they all have Republican governors, and Republican state legislatures, but how did they get that way? Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell was elected in 2009, while Governors John Kasich (R-OH), Rick Scott (R-FL), Rick Snyder (R-MI), Tom Corbett (R-PA), and Scott Walker (R-WI) were all elected in 2010. With the exception of Florida’s Rick Scott, all of them succeeded Democratic governors, although Scott predecessor Charlie Crist is now a Democrat. Again, with the exception of Florida, all of these states had at least one Democratically-controlled legislative chamber in 2008, when then-Sen. Barack Obama was elected, and all have flipped to complete Republican control since then. What is wrong with the people in these states? Can’t they make up their minds?

As it turns out, a lot of them did make up their minds… to stay home.

I totally get that it's not as visible or exciting if there's not a would-be President of the United States on the ballot, but if Democrats want to roll back some of the awfulness that's gone down in some of these states, including the anti-choice misogynistic laws, they need to turn out and vote in primaries, midterms and odd-number years.

  • D_C_Wilson

    Corbett’s approval ratings are in the toilet right now. He’s facing questions about his handling of the Penn State scandal while at the same time, he’s suing the NCAA over Penn State’s fines in a bid to win favor with the alumni. If he doesn’t turn things around before the 2014 election, he may very well be the first Pennsylvania governor to fail to win re-election.

  • Chachizel

    I live in Ft Bend County, outside of Houston, and there’s no question that Dem turnout is ridiculously low in local and off year elections, BUT…for the most part the Republican incumbents run completely unchallenged…especially on the Blue side. I just don’t vote for those at all. No choice in the matter. SMH. In another unrelated note, my Sprint EVO 4G LTE phone, for some reason is not reading DISQUIS on your site anymore. No offense to you Bob, or Ashby, or Mr Brink, but part of the reason I like this blog is the comments. Can’t get them on my phone….sucks!

  • trgahan

    When the history books are written, I think the 2010 election will be much more important than 2008 and 2012 combined. With that election, the GOP was able to nullify a Presidency; remake traditionally progressive states into conservative havens; further free business from social responsibility and taxation; and roll back government and the safety net in ways unthinkable even 10 years ago.

    If they succeed in rigging the electoral votes in battle ground states they control, we may see (instead of the much talked about progressive demographic victory) a long term rule by a minority party starting in 2016.

  • IrishGrrrl

    The sweep of Republican state and local wins was the result of a long planned out GOP strategy. You can see it in how they’ve taken over school boards too. Probably when Clinton was office, they started to think long term (election-wise at least) and they realized there was a pattern to how the President was elected–alternating with some two termer in there. But whoever was a two termer was almost always followed by someone of the other party. So their little pea brains thought, during the Clinton years, we’re tired of waiting him out and we failed with impeachment. Let’s do something more local. And so they did. And when GWB came into office, they knew at some point he would be out BUT if they won on the local and state level it wouldn’t matter so much.

    Now at the same time this is going on the American people seem to have a voting pattern and it’s nothing new. If they vote for a Dem pres they will vote for Rep Congresscritters and vice versa. What if they do that on the state level too? What if those Republican Govs are there BECAUSE the Pres was a Dem. I mean, we can look at the data and see how the Pres’s party corresponds to Gov elections to see if its that same pattern. Then we know, for whatever reason, Americans vote in a way to keep the parties balanced.

    I think the GOP just figured it out and took advantage of this pattern AND Americans crappy voter participation in local and state elections. They may suck on the issues but they sure do know how to work the system, don’t they?

  • Don Elliott

    It may also be the case that we saw the real influence of Citizens United here. Targeted spending from unknown groups/people designed to accomplish just what we have here – a coup d’etat accomplished by legal means. Thank you Ronaldus Magnus.