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Its Always the Economy, Stupid by Ezra Klein

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Joanne98 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-11-10 08:42 AM
Original message

To win in November, focus on paychecks, not polls.

Its begun. With merely four months until the elections, were starting to see the articles outlining the angry divisions between the presidents counselors. The fight apparently pits the political team, which wants the president to turn his attention to the political problem of deficits, against the economic team, which wants him to keep focusing on economic stimulus. Politics versus governance is, of course, an age-old choice. The job of governing is different from the job of getting reelected. Or is it?

For decades now, political scientists have been building election models that attempt to predict who will win in November without making any reference to candidates or campaigns. They can get within 2 points of the final vote, and they dont need to know anything about the ads and the gaffes and the ground games. All they really need to know about is the economy.

In presidential elections, says Princeton political scientist Larry Bartels, a 1 percent boost in election-year income growth has typically increased the incumbent partys vote share by about 2 percent. So an incumbent party that won 51 percent of the vote in an average economic year like 2004 would be expected to win only 46 percent in a recession year like 2008. Which is, as you may remember, pretty much exactly what happened.

Congressional elections are a bit more difficult because theyre more local, but they end up being predictable, too. Gary Jacobson, a political scientist at the University of California, San Diego, has a model that uses the numbers of seats the majority party holds, the approval rating of the president, and the change in real disposable income, and predicts about 70 percent of the swing between elections.
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Demeter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-11-10 01:49 PM
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1. But they want a cheap victory by push-poll and propaganda
They don't WANT to push jobs. Jobs cost money, and spread power to the People. They want starving, powerless masses in a frenzy to follow the self-designated leader. they don't want informed citizenry, making policy through the grassroots and bringing fresh talent to Washington.

They really like it this way. They are way into their comfort zone.
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Oceansaway Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-11-10 08:37 PM
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2. K&R...n/t
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