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Response to ehrnst (Reply #5)

Thu Sep 24, 2020, 08:40 PM

6. Some examples

"Freshman Democratic Sen. Gary Peters admits that he was surprised by the results in his home state, whose largest paper, the Detroit Free Press, mistakenly called the race for Clinton. He also stresses how narrowly Trump won: Michigan has nearly 7,000 precincts, so Trump’s 10,000-vote margin means he basically got just one more vote per precinct than Clinton.

Still, Peters — the only non-incumbent Democrat to win a Senate seat in 2014 — says the Clinton campaign made an array of unforced errors that allowed Trump to take the state. Among the biggest: failing to visit United Automobile Workers (UAW) halls full of union members who didn’t trust her position on free trade and using get-out-the-vote records that were so inaccurate that Clinton volunteers routinely found themselves knocking on the doors of Trump supporters. Those, he notes diplomatically, really aren’t the people Clinton should have been trying to bring to the polls."


The anecdotes are different but the narrative is the same across battlegrounds, where Democratic operatives lament a one-size-fits-all approach drawn entirely from pre-selected data — operatives spit out “the model, the model,” as they complain about it — guiding Mook’s decisions on field, television, everything else. That’s the same data operation, of course, that predicted Clinton would win the Iowa caucuses by 6 percentage points (she scraped by with two-tenths of a point), and that predicted she’d beat Bernie Sanders in Michigan (he won by 1.5 points).

“I’ve never seen a campaign like this,” said Virgie Rollins, a Democratic National Committee member and longtime political hand in Michigan who described months of failed attempts to get attention to the collapse she was watching unfold in slow-motion among women and African-American millennials.


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