With just nine days to go until Virginia votes, check out the following analysis thread by CNU Professor Rachel Bitecofer. In sum, Bitecofer argues – and I agree wholeheartedly – that:
- Dems’ “success or failure will come down to turnout” on November 5th, that if “the electorate looks like 2015, Rs might be able to hold, at least the Senate,” but that “if the electorate looks like 2017 & 2018, both chambers are likely to flip.”
- So here’s the concern: right now, with regard to the “absentee data, we are getting a good picture of interest at the district level, and that picture suggests uneven interest in the election.”
- On the positive side, we’re seeing “interest esp high in two districts identified as very vulnerable to flipping by my Sept analysis: district 66 where @SpeakerCox is defending a seat that went from R+14 to one of the most competitive races in the state & @DelChrisJones.”
- On the less positive side, “as a region Hampton Roads is, well, spotty, on this metric of enthusiasm. Senate district 8 is faring better than 7, probably bc it overlaps with some of the highest activity H.O.D districts but the 8th senate district MUST HAVE a large turnout increase for D friendly voters bc it has to overcome a R+5.2 PVI score- which means it is similar to what the Ds needed to do on turnout to win the NC_9 Special.”
- Bottom line: “Ds need to find a way to juice up interest in their closing argument or risk falling short…Bringing in @BarackObama or even @MichelleObama seems like the logical approach– but Ds operate under the flawed assumption that increasing excitement in elections by bringing in big name closers is more likely to raise turnout of the opposition party’s voters than their own. If this was ever true, it is certainly not true in the polarized era…”
So, yeah, I agree: if there’s any way to bring in Barack Obama, Michelle Obama, and other top-tier “closers” to help fire up the Democratic electorate – which historically has tended to “drop off” in these “off/odd” election years – in the closing days of the 2019 Virginia election campaign, we should do everything we can to make that happen. Obviously, you want to “leave it all on the field” for every election, but this one gives Virginia an historic opportunity to finally have a General Assembly that works for the people, to protect the environment, etc. Which, of course, means – to paraphrase “Alexander Hamilton” – we absolutely must NOT throw away our shot here!