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Kerry's supporters cost the Democrats the election
Published on November 4, 2004 By Draginol In Politics

Like many, I had predicted that Kerry would win the election. But he didn't. And now the question is, why? We may never be able to offer a definitive answer to this but I will offer a theory that I think is pretty plausible.

Backlash

People get fed up. And they respond. In politics, that means they come out and vote.

For the past year, Kerry's supporters had made it pretty clear that anyone who supported Bush must be some kind of "moron", "idiot", "racist", "fascist", "red neck", whatever. They referred to the President as a "chimp" and other vile names. And these people, many who don't normally vote, got mad and they decided to come out to vote this time.

That's because the American people are not stupid. They're a vigorous, hard working, enterprising people who have helped make the world a vastly better place (and anyone who disagrees may want to look at 19th century Europe).  The contempt and hatred from Kerry's supporters made a lot of people who were only nominally Bush supporters into energized Bush supporters.

Millions of Americans simply don't want to be associated with Michael Moore and MoveOn.org and snobby Hollywood celebrities or uppity European elites. They got sick of having their views jammed down their throats. They got sick of the media flagrantly siding with Kerry. One might even say that the New York Times did a lot to help Bush win. Americans could see the unfairness in that these self-appointed elites got to have their say while they were expected to be quiet and take it. After all, why should some has-been Hollywood comedienne get to be on a panel on Hardball when millions of hard working Americans never go to have their voice heard? So they fought back with the only weapon they have: Their vote.

Kerry supporters increased the Bush vote one dinner party at a time. One little league game at a time. One office lunch room at a time. With their smug contempt for those who weren't as "enlightened" as they were. And their nasty attitudes towards Bush and his views on social, moral, and foreign policy, they effectively turned themselves into a Get out the vote drive -- for Bush.

Last week my son came home and told me that his friend's mom told him that if Bush won that he would be sent off to war. My son is 7 years old. My friend's mom is a middle-school teacher. Kerry himself would imply that Bush was going to reinstate the draft (January surprise nonsense).  Michael Moore spread the word that Bush was in bed with the Saudi Royal family. Foreign pundits claimed that Bush and Cheney were in Iraq for Halliburton's sake. 

And yet, without a trace of irony, Kerry supporters would argue that people who supported Bush had been swayed by all that "right wing" propaganda. As if the millions of public school teachers, who often are alone amongst their neighbors in their support for Democrats, do so strictly because of their free thinking ways and not because of the constant inflow of disinformation from the NEA (teachers unions).

And so every time a Kerry supporter, when confronted with a friend or neighbor who said they liked Bush (or didn't hate him at least) would say "Gosh, you seem like a smart guy, how could you not hate Bush?" they effectively energized someone who might have sat out the election because of Bush's deficit spending or other failings.

If you look at the actual returns state by state (especially county by county when compared to 2000) it becomes pretty clear. Kerry didn't do bad really. He got 5 MILLION more votes than Gore did.  It's just that Bush got 8 million more votes than he did last time. And most of those votes were from "average Americans" in rural or suburban areas.

In short, millions of Americans voted for Bush not because they were "fearful" of terror (the exit polls demonstrate that). No, they voted for Bush because they saw the smug contempt that Kerry's pretentious supporters have for the values and beliefs that they have. And they did something about it - they came out and voted.


Comments (Page 3)
on Nov 04, 2004
The more concise reason for Kerry losing was that democrats simply didn't go to the polls.


...or maybe they went but they are still the minority not the majority?

Plink Plinko 0000!!



on Nov 04, 2004
This is dead nuts accurate.


Huh? I have never heard that expression before! But it sure sounds funny even if I cant understand its roots! !
on Nov 04, 2004
Deference, does that mean that the democrats truely did not care who won the election? That the anybody but republicans/Bush policy didn't drive them to the polls?

It means that some who would have voted Democrat didn't show up because they were not motivated or disciplined enough. Bush supporters, Republicans, are more frequent voters who were galvanized by their identification with Bush. I don't truly believe Bush represents the conservative agenda, but they did, and that's what counted.
on Nov 04, 2004
Huh? I have never heard that expression before!


This is the definition from the Urban Dictionary:

1. dead nuts on

Very accurate. When used as an explanatory measurement, it means that it is within 99% accuracy.

Another:

DEAD NUTS adjective phrase by 1980s. Exactly right; precisely as desired [‘dead nuts’ in a similar sense is attested at about the same time. Both ‘dead on ‘ and ‘dead nuts on’ are attested as meaning’ having complete mastery over; sure a hand at’ in 1871]

1984 ‘Phantom’ by Trotti page 171 [referring to Vietnam War]: ‘Your dive angle and air speed were dead nuts on.’

You got me curious of the origin with your post. I've just always used it. Apparently it is fairly common with engineers and machinists (I'm an engineer) and military and hunting persons. There is an archery sight called the "dead nuts". It is also commonly applied to a manufactured part feature that is precise and accurate with tight tolerances.

on Nov 04, 2004
"...here and if you bad mouthed Bush at a dinner party, you would probably be shown the door."

Being shown the door is not in the same universe as the vulgarities coming out of the Democratic party; comparing the President to Adolph Hilter, just one of the numerous lies being told. It is uncounsciable that Democrats have been unable to field a National party with the deceny to denounce such vulgar rhetoric. I for one become a Republican after witnessing the negative animus toward Bush. In fact during the 2000 election I was living in Texas and remember distinctly the uncouth behavior of the Democrats. During the next four years I came to the decision that I would support the Republicans and the President and have not regretted it for one moment and this is exactly why the Democrats are losing power on the National and local level. They no longer have the ability to appeal with American voters, for hatred of others does not motivate. Motivation must come from conviction and Senator Kerry was not convicted of anything.

Cheers, Ithaycu
on Nov 04, 2004

Reply #26 By: Bahu Virupaksha - 11/4/2004 3:59:09 AM
John Kerry lost not because he ran a negative campaign as Draginol seems to imply, but because of the unexpected and totally unwarranted display of desert theatre by Osama Bin Laden. This man thought that he could pull a Spain on the USA. Had he not made his presence felt just 3 days before the election, the result could have been cl.oser. However, given the marin of victory the Osama Tape may have had a negative impact. Kerry was affected by this and it goes to show that predicting election Phseology is an art and not a science. Any way, Bush is the winner and the election was not flawed as in 2000.


This shows the facts of what you don't know about american politics. Kerry lost because he had nothing but hate for a message to america. And because of his stand on the morality issues!
on Nov 04, 2004

Reply #28 By: Deference - 11/4/2004 11:08:13 AM
I can't say I agree with you, Draginol. I'm certain that some interaction between Kerry and Bush supporters further polarized those individuals, but their minds were already made up. That fails to account for the Kerry loss. The more concise reason for Kerry losing was that democrats simply didn't go to the polls.


You think so? Maybe you should look at a map of republicans vs democrats on a county by county map. The republicans outnumber the Dems.
on Nov 04, 2004
Oh, sorry Draginol. I assumed that your unhappiness with Kerry supporters labeling Bush supporters "redecks" et al. was a complaint about one group generalising another. My mistake.
on Nov 04, 2004
A Map of county-wide voting is shown on Hannity.com in case you are interested.

That John Kerry lost the race should not be any great surprise. Let's be honest here; The Democrats have fielded ONE strong candidate since John Kennedy, and that it is of course Bill Clinton. The bottom line is that extreme liberalism simply doesn't ever wash in this country. Take a look at the successful Democratic presidents. Woodrow Wilson, FDR, Kennedy...none of those could be called a Dove. None of those would dare think of voting against vital weapon systems or cutting the US intelligence budget at a critical juncture. John Kerry did just that, and he paid the price.
on Nov 04, 2004
Maybe you should look at a map of republicans vs democrats on a county by county map. The republicans outnumber the Dems.

As I mentioned before above that some who would have voted Democrat didn't show up because they were not motivated or disciplined enough. Bush supporters, Republicans, are more frequent voters who were galvanized by their identification with Bush. I don't truly believe Bush represents the conservative agenda, but they did, and that's what counted.

So what I'm saying is that the dems slouched off. The number of registered voters voting this year was higher then last election, it still only ran at 60 - 65 % of registered voters. I would suggest that many of the complementing percentage would have voted democratic but failed to even make it to the polls.
on Nov 04, 2004
Oh yes...you are correct. I am a teacher, belong to the union, and I am even the president of a local California chapter. Every day in every way, it was communicated that either one was an enlightened supporter of Kerry, or an ignorant, easily-led fool for Bush. That is too simple by half. Count me as one who was energized and enlightened--for Bush!
on Nov 04, 2004
I find this argument (that Republicans won because Democrats are elitist snobs) fascinating because it's totally unsupported by the facts. Republicans won for two reasons, as shown by the exit polls: moral values and terrorism. Republicans correctly calculated that the gay marriage amendments would get cultural conservatives to the polls, and all those scary commercials about wolves and evil doers put enough fear into the non-evangelicals to get them on the Red side too.

But I won't deny that there is some elitism among Democrats. I am one of the few liberals I know with Republican friends. At a dinner party this summer, I suggested to some other liberals that they should engage Republicans in conversation about the issues, and one of my friends said, "I don't talk to Republicans. They're too stupid."

I find that point of view reprehensible. I did talk to the Republicans I know before this election, and I pursuaded most of them to vote for Kerry. I wonder what would have happened if more liberals had been willing to communicate across the aisle like I did.
on Nov 04, 2004
I agree Draginol. I live in a very liberal state and its amazing to me that when I express an opinion that differs with my liberal friends, they shake their heads sadly at me and mourn my "narrow-mindedness". I've come to understand that "narrow-mindedness" means disagreeing with a liberal.
on Nov 04, 2004

find this argument (that Republicans won because Democrats are elitist snobs) fascinating because it's totally unsupported by the facts. Republicans won for two reasons, as shown by the exit polls: moral values and terrorism.

Iron Rob: If you decided to go out and vote for Bush because you were disgusted with the behavior and hate coming from Kerry supporters, what checkbox would you have filled out as the "most important issue"? Moral values.

on Nov 04, 2004
Draginol,

What's especially interesting about your argument is that it presumes Bush didn't win based on the merit of his message. That people didn't vote FOR Bush but AGAINST Kerry. Maybe you feel that way because you have expressed your own doubts about Bush's performance as president, and you'd like to think that Bush won not because people were uninformed about his poor performance, but because Kerry and his supporters were such jerks.

I just don't buy it. I think there was equally disgusting behavior and hate coming from both sides. Some fringe elements of the Left did compare the Bush administration to Nazis. But fringe elements of the Right compared Kerry people to terrorists. Liberals disparage right wingers as stupid rednecks but, as many people in this forum have pointed out, that isn't so different from disparaging left wingers as elitists. Every time I heard Bush use the phrase "Massachusetts Liberal," his voice dripping with contempt, I wondered why he felt comfortable using the name of one of the United States of America as a slur. And while I can't think of any Democratically sponsered ads that disparaged Bush as a redneck, or as stupid, I can think of numerous Republican sponsered ads that disparaged Kerry as "another white liberal elitist."

The reason Bush won is that ever since the Civil Rights era, Democrats have become less and less adept at backing up their messages with moral, rather than logical, arguments. In the debates, John Kerry was constantly citing statistics to prove his points. Then Bush would counter with his beliefs, his confidence, and his convictions. He'd say, "I believe we should do blank, because it's the right thing to do." Democrats thought they would win this election because Kerry won the logical contest. But larger portion of America cares more about the moral force of the argument than the logic.

The elitist wing of the Democratic party sees this as a sign that Republicans are stupid. And Democrats will keep losing elections until they understand that Americans want to be inspired, not just pursuaded.

Bush knows how to inspire people. Let's just pray he can learn how to govern in the next four years.


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