Rodrigo Sermeño covers a little heralded press briefing in DC this week where a collection of Republican committee leaders put forth an optimistic look at what we should expect to see this November. While understandably short on specifics, it at least paints the picture of an organizational structure which is trying to get a solid ground game in place.
The five GOP committees overseeing presidential, Senate, House, gubernatorial and state legislative races hosted a joint press briefing on Capitol Hill, where they highlighted their coordinated strategy for the November elections.
Republican National Committee Chief of Staff Mike Shields said the idea behind the event was to highlight how well the groups are “working together.”
Shields said there are some “common things in many of the different races that makes us feel good about where we are headed.” …
Shields cited a poll that showed 53 percent of Americans believe it is important to put Republicans in charge to offset Obama and his party allies.
The committees have apparently recruited and deployed more than 16,000 workers on the local level – primarily precinct captains and minority outreach coordinators – to make first person contact with “low propensity voters” and obtain buy-in well in advance of the mid-terms. To be sure, this is important work in an area where Democrats had the upper hand two years ago, but the more important question is precisely what message these ground level agents are taking with them to the masses. Somewhat disturbing is the highlighting of studies showing the general dissatisfaction among voters about the nation’s direction.
In reality, this is nothing more than the overarching strategy of both parties over the past several decades. A shorter way of describing it is that the party currently out of power wants to rely on the fact that people are generally unhappy with the state of affairs in the country and are willing to throw the bums out this year, only to put a new set of bums in charge of the store. Unfortunately, while this has been a successful short term strategy in the past, it does not lead to any actual change.
In order to achieve the long sought dream of a sustainable majority, you have to do more than point out how bad the other guys are. You need to provide a demonstrable case where you offer a plan to actually make the lives of the voters better, not just today, but into the future. And then, of course, the hard part comes. If you win, you have to actually do it. Failing that, all you’ve managed to do is grab the tiller for two or four years until the ousted party does precisely the same thing to you. The GOP definitely needs to turn out a tide of less likely voters willing to give them a chance, but they also need to show them exactly what the change will look like and how it will reach into their lives in a positive way. If you can manage that, they just might show up to vote again next time. And the time after that…