All about the base: Mahinda’s 40%

Pay attention to the numbers and this part:

In very general terms Rajapaksa and his party has had the support of around 45% of the electorate in the three polls. The most notable revelation is that he has a solid base of over 40% that his rivals do not have.

To defeat Mahinda (excluding a Presidential election), the question is how the UNP flips enough floating + disillusioned SLFP votes. Currently, the SLFP (non-Mahinda) faction is really only important as a source for harvesting votes by Mahinda or the UNP.

if both the TNA share as well as the JVP share are excluded from the Saturday vote the combined UNP-UPFA-SLFP share falls to 41.5% from the 45.7% that the same party combination polled in the August 2015 parliamentary elections. This is a serious loss of 4.2 percentage points. Some people not voting on Saturday as a mark of protest against the government that failed to fulfill its promises and some switching the vote to the JVP or the SLPP are the likely reasons for this. There is a two percentage point uptick in the share of the SLPP vote compared to the share in August 2015. These movements are sufficient to make a difference to the result when an election is close.

Ossoff and marketing in GA-06

“Humble. Kind. Ready to Fight”…but not to win.

The Ossoff campaign contained some of the worst email marketing that I have even seen. These passive agrressive and desperate pleas are a hugely ineffective means of getting votes, no matter how effective they are in fundraising.



The e-mailers may not have been the worst piece of advertising from the Ossoff campaign. This video is even worse. It is gimmicky, weak and offers nothing positive for voters.

In contrast to that, from a perspective of negative marketing, these ads from Handel were brutal and effective.

It strikes me that a key reason for these marketing choices by the Ossoff campaign was the “Panera Bread” strategy.

essentially a rationale for appealing to suburban voters in swing districts rather than spending time or money trying to expand the Democratic party’s base among working-class voters, minorities, or millennials

These kinds of ads seem targeted to that kind of demographic, whereas running in the traditional Republic district, Handel just had to secure her base.

Gary Hart and why Trump was inevitable.

We’re all going to have to seriously question the system for selecting our national leaders, for it reduces the press of this nation to hunters and Presidential candidates to being hunted.

In an episode of the excellent Axe-Files podcast featuring the equally excellent Matt Bai, the Gary Hary scandal and Bai’s book on it were discussed. Having only a passing familiarity with the incident, I was intrigued by the suggestion that it was a precursor to the age of Trump and by an apparently prescient statement by Hart withdrawing his candidacy.  Looking at a transcript of the statement, there are certainly aspects of it that have resonance today.

Politics in this country – take it from me – is on the verge of becoming another form of athletic competition or sporting match. We all better do something to make this system work or we’re all going to be soon rephrasing Jefferson to say: I tremble for my country when I think we may, in fact, get the kind of leaders we deserve.

I’ve quoted above extracts that immediately seemed significant to me in the Trump era. This next quote seems all too relevant as well and perhaps it was inevitable that once the system was sufficiently distorted, the only person who could emerge triumphantly was someone immune to the worst aspects of it.

I was going to be the issue. Now, I don’t want to be the issue. And I cannot be the issue, because that breaks the link between me and the voters. And that’s what I tried to explain to my children.

If someone’s able to throw up a smokescreen and keep it up there long enough, you can’t get your message across. You can’t raise the money to finance a campaign; there’s too much static, and you can’t communicate.

In the final analysis, the American people decide what qualities are important to govern this country in the national interest. And they haven’t been heard from yet.