Claire McCaskill won with more than just Todd Akin's comments
ST. LOUIS • On the cusp of a body-blow election loss eight years ago, Claire McCaskill knew exactly what had happened. The Rolla, Mo., native believed she had forgotten her rural roots, focusing her campaign too heavily on St. Louis and Kansas City. Missouri responded that year by electing Republican Matt Blunt as governor instead of her.
McCaskill’s landslide re-election to the U.S. Senate Tuesday came in part from a “rural strategy,” employed from within a roving campaign RV dubbed “Big Blue,” cruising through places such as Rolla, Ozark and Bolivar.
Wresting large swaths of rural Missouri from Republican Todd Akin was part of McCaskill’s path to victory, that and aggressively pushing her centrist record. And her strategy of honing specific issues to specific constituencies — Social Security for seniors, college loans for students, the minimum wage for union workers.
Her margin of victory was partly due to a Libertarian candidate who performed better than expected, at Akin’s expense. It was partly just a good year for Democrats. And McCaskill had the advantage of being a well-financed incumbent.
1. Claire McCaskill winning should be considered in a larger context than Akin's negatives.
Can this year's result be interpreted as "Outside money can lose you a race in politics"? Perhaps.
But also, a good candidate has real traction. We saw that scenario unfold in North Dakota w/o national media attention, and in Mass. with lots of media.
McCaskill, Heitkamp, Warren, they all get kudos for being far better choices than their opponents. Their positives won their elections.
That said, Akin and Mourdock tilted their races from close like ND to handily won.
ND raises the issue of wasting outside money. Has outside money proven to be self-defeating in some states?
Rove alone spent $25 per U.S. Senate vote in North Dakota, and Berg lost by under 3,000 votes
Money can't buy you politics if the People pay attention.
One reason Berg lost is because Rove spent $25 per vote in North Dakota.
You can't buy North Dakotans, but you sure can piss them off if you think you can!
In North Dakota, outside money might lose you your job in politics!