November 3, 2004

As I was saying last July,

There are millions and millions of citizens who are registered as Democrats and who talk the Democrat talk but do not always walk the Democrat walk when push comes to shove. You might be in a union-- Trade, Government, Teachers, etc. -- that could harm you if you announced for Bush. You might be in a family with deep Democratic roots. You might be a member of a minority in which you would be ostracised if you confessed you would vote for Bush. You might be of a sexual persuasion where you're chances of dates would be severely curtailed if you said you were voting for Bush. You might be working in an office or in a career where you chances for advancement might be crippled if you voted for Bush. You might be at a school where even your grades would be impacted if you said you were voting for Bush.

In short there are hundreds of situations in which millions of people find themselves where a declared preference for Bush would not be a wise thing to announce. Much better to simply nod vaguely and stay out of the way of any negative consequences. The idea that everybody is going to vote the way they say they will is very oversold, particularly by the media or the pollsters who have a vested interest in declaring the race "tight." The "stealth vote" is especially relevant in an election where the single most pressing question that will come into a voter's mind after the curtains close behind him or her and they stand ready to vote is: "What's it going to be? Issue X, Y, Z, or my life?"

Sensible people, no matter what they may or may not say, choose life. And sensible people know that that is what this election is about.

-- American Digest: The Inevitable Bush Blowout, July 29, 2004

Now I have to say that, in terms of effect, it wasn't exactly what I meant by "blowout" at the time. But still, with the largest number of people voting ever, and the largest number of those by far voting for Bush, and the pick-up of seats in the House, the Senate, and in the states across the country .... well, I'll take it as it stands.

A blowout? Well that would depend on how close you are standing to the center of the blast.

Posted by Vanderleun at November 3, 2004 2:39 PM
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Can you explain why Bush did not win in a landslide like we anticipated?

Posted by: op at November 3, 2004 7:53 PM

Yes, I can as can many others. But it was, if not a "blowout" as I said in July a complete, decisive, devastating, and historic victory that leaves no one in doubt about his legitimate right to lead this country for four years.

And, in the end, that's all it takes.

Posted by: Gerard Van der Leun at November 3, 2004 8:07 PM

Bush got 51%. Barely over half? Yes. But quickly, list the Dem presidential candidates who garnered a larger percentage since FDR. The last 60 years. 15 elections.

Donít bother looking it up, Iíll tell you. Precisely one. Johnson.

Not Clinton, either time. Not Carter, not Kennedy, not Truman. And obviously not all the other Dems who did not even win the election.

15 elections since World War II

Only ONCE did a Dem candidate get more than 51% of the popular vote.

Posted by: Phil at November 4, 2004 7:28 AM

The reason he never got the 55% or more we anticipated is because we underestimated the influence of MSM. Bush ran a campaign against the MSM not Kerry. Any other Democrat would have won 48% with the help of the media. I did not realize that until after this election.

Two other items really hurt him. The war in Iraq did not go as well as many had anticipated and he did poorly in the second debate.

Posted by: op at November 4, 2004 8:56 AM

op hit it on the nose. If Newsweek's editor who bosted the MSM was worth 15 points is even half right, than taking that into consideration, it was a blow out.

Think about what Bush overcame:
- his own personal communication deficiencies
- daily MSM distortions
- Hollywood propaganda
- UN intervention
- Intellectual elite
- a generation of liberal assumptions
- a decade+ of false security and a bubble economy
- Millions of Soros and other mega-rich dirty money

That's a pretty stacked deck.

Posted by: phil g at November 4, 2004 11:47 AM

Don't forget those of us in the media who wouldn't dare mention that they're voting for Bush.

Posted by: Anonymous at November 4, 2004 3:27 PM