Cory Leonard

June 2012 Primary Elections Takeaway – Tea Party Fail

In politics on June 28, 2012 at 6:04 pm

So the anti-incumbent thing didn’t work this time–not to mention the wind in the Tea Party sails appears to be fading–at least for now.

And while I admire the massive tidal wave of signage (and passion) of the “Dan” campaign, for me he was not a a compelling candidate.  My friends at utahdatapoints came up with scenarios where Hatch won 51/53/56 to 22/23/25 for Dan.  My favorite data guy, Nate Silver at fivethirtyeight, recognizes that predictions are tricky (a must read discussion if you find yourself frustrated with the lack of good numbers before the vote.)  But what about post-game analysis?  Politico’s take:

Orrin Hatch’s textbook campaign

Hatch’s thumping of GOP challenger Dan Liljenquist served as a reminder that the quality of a campaign still matters. He offered a textbook example of how GOP Senate incumbents should run in an era of conservative grassroots ferment.

He recognized the danger early on — his 2012 campaign began the moment his junior colleague, Bob Bennett, was denied renomination in 2010. He built up a huge cash advantage, worked the grass-roots hard and choked off Liljenquist’s oxygen supply by declining any televised debates before the primary.

via Primary results 2012: Five lessons from the June 26 primary elections – POLITICO.com.

Update 7/2/12:  The take from Pignanelli/Webb (a rare bright spot at DesNews) where the former muses that “voters do not care about the minutia of qualifications and experience details. The victors instead touched the hearts of citizens by appealing to issues they understood” and the latter observes “The bottom-feeding political consultants and candidates who practice these dark arts ought to be embarrassed. All candidates have to be ready for these trashy campaigns and prepare enough firepower to counter the distortions. It’s the Wild West out there, and it’s not going to get any better.”

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