Thursday, April 5, 2018

Ways to Ensure a Blue Wave

By Jeff Simpson

Capper pointed out that the Spring Elections of 2018 turned into a major win for for the liberals, progressives and center left Wisconsinites and sent Scott Walker into a Twitter trepidation.

However in politics, nothing is for sure, and the 8 months or so remaining before the November vote is an eternity. 

So let's take a look at the weather forecast for the possible #bluewave coming. 

Urban Milwaukee gave their take here on what happened, but I think you need to dig deeper into the ground to really see.

1.  The Supreme Court race, finally a Democratically backed candidate beat a GOP backed candidate.  While that is great news for all in WI, there is more here than a #bluewave.  Many people I talked to, liked Ms. Dallet, but were far from inspired by her.  Her attacking Tim Burns for being a Democrat, then switched that up with attacking her opponent Screnock for being a Republican and not being afraid to admit she is a Democrat showed that opportunism is alive and well. 

Turnout was high, but it was not necessarily because of this Supreme Court Race(we will cover why later).   Ms. Dallet's opponent, Mike Screnock,  was probably less qualified to be on the Supreme Court than anyone in WI not named Mike Gableman. 

Screnock was not only unqualified, but appeared uninterested also.   He knew that the GOP, who put him up, would do all of the work and he would deliver them favorable rulings.

They ran into a roadblock though when a majority of WI voters decided they had enough of a stacked court and decided to send the Baraboo Clown back to Circus World. 

The next day, we found out that the voters of Wisconsin made the right choice when Right Wisconsin called the voters stupid

UM said that Dallet "laid out a template and how to win".  Running basically a single statewide race on the ballot, against a true dunce, who had about as much ambition to work hard as Patience, perform mediocre in a debate and ride the wave. 

I am glad that Dallet won the race over Screnock, but she was basically an uninspiring candidate whose "blue print" would not translate to a statewide Gubernatorial election.

2.  Scott Walker's twitter tirade, was not a moment of weakness, but a leopard showing his spots.   These past 8 years in WI, have brought us mass shootings, horrible car crashes, fires, staple business closings, massive protests, police officers murdered, long term debt, sexual predator Republican majority leaders, lost his house, etc... and the one time he panics online is when he sees for the first time he might lose his job.

The only thing that you can take from a career politician, with more ambition than intelligence, is his power.   Like a Pro Football Player who retires, then come July misses the camaraderie, Scott Walker will miss being paid  by the taxpayers of WI, $150k/yr + full benefits, to travel the country and keep raising his national profile.   He can not be President if he loses his Governor seat and just gets a high paying lobbyist gig. 

3.  It is still too early to call Tammy's race one or the other, but all signs are pointing to Yes.    On the one hand, like Dallet, Tammy will be running against a horrendous candidate who will have a hard time stringing two sentences together and has a third grade understanding of actual Government and what it takes to represent the people of WI.

On the other hand, Ms. Baldwin is an incumbent and things are not looking well for incumbents

Typically, when one party takes control of all three branches, the next midterm election, does not bode well for the party in charge.   The pendulum is always swinging.  However, things in politics are no longer "typical" and as bad as some Presidents have been, none have been as soulless, anti-intellectual, egotistical sub humans as the Donald. 

That all being said, the Democrats are in the drivers seat of the coming blue wave.   It is not however, a sure thing, even if the momentum is favoring the blue team.   

Let's take a look at three steps to be taken to help ensure that November is a successful month in electoral Wisconsin.

1.  The best and only way to capitalize on the blue wave, is to allow everyone a chance to vote out their Republican rep.   The Dems MUST run a candidate in every. single. district.

2.  There has to be a consistent message.  There will be important and popular races, up and down the ballot.  In order for them not to get lost in the shuffle, especially down ballot races, the people have to know what they are voting FOR. 

People do not have time to spend scouring the internet to find their positions or information about them.  They have to know who they are voting for and what they stand for. 

3.  As pointed out earlier, there is no longer such a thing as "typical" in electoral politics anymore.    The person with the most money will not necessarily win.  The candidate who hits the most doors will not necessarily win either. 

I have seen more money spent, and way more doors and work done  by candidates who finished last and candidates who did not work hard at all win their elections. 

Incumbency used to be a blessing but now in many instances, it can be a curse.

How do we counter the Politics For Dummies book being flipped on its head?   That is simple do a little bit of everything but do not do the conventional thing only. 

*  Old School Tactics:

I still believe that doors, volunteers, yard signs, calls, are all important but have to be targeted and just one of the ingredients.  I personally would take the VAN and turn it on its head.   I think to only target "strong dems" or "prior voters" you are doing yourself, your campaign and your community a disservice.

The "Strong Dems" are going to be with you.  They are going to know there is an election and are probably the ones doing the doors. 

Understand that in today's world, more and more people are paying attention.  More and more people are voting and more and more people are getting disgusted by the day by The Donald.   Time to capitalize on that and realize everyone can/should be a voter. 

*  Turnout: 

Everyone likes to say after each election that they win - when our voters turn out we win.  The problem with that is it assumes that America/Wisconsin is divided between two equal parts - Democrats (blue team)  and Republicans (red team) and whoever can get the most people of their team to show up on election day is the team that wins.

The flaw in that is, we know that there are people, who have voted Obama/Walker/Trump/Tammy etc... While it seems a bit quadpolar to do so there really is a reason and it is not that hard to figure out. 

There are millions of people in our nation that the American Dream just really is not working for.   Both sides when they are in power speak of how amazing they are doing while in office, and yet people of all stripes and colors live their daily life where they are walking a tightrope.  Knowing they are one small disaster away from losing everything.   Maybe a family member is sick and they are going broke trying to cover the medical bills, or the local plant has closed and they can not find a new job that does not include a $30/k paycut, or they have limited savings and the check engine light is on in their car that they need to drive the 35 miles one way to the job they did find, or they are a single parent who works two jobs and already has to leave her children alone for hours a day, etc...

Obama promised hope and then things did not really change, The Donald promised them their days of struggle were over and had no interest in helping them with their struggles.

That is why there is a huge group of people in the middle who continue to vote out the incumbents hoping that maybe, just maybe, they will get to experience the American Dream that their parents and grandparents did.

*   Stand WITH the kids:

If anyone has not seen the insurgence of young people then they have not been paying attention.   The latest school shooting woke up a sleeping giant of youth and they are not going back underground.    They have watched and waited while the "adults" have failed them over and over and realize that they are going to inherit the mess we are creating.

Now is the time, to gain a huge new group of  "Democrats" for a generation but it has to be done carefully.
    - Stand alongside or slightly behind the youth when they speak, they will see through arrogance and condescension.
    - Invite them to the table and actually listen to them. 
    - Stop pretending that this is a generation of kids who eat Tide Pods.  While some idiots have eaten Tide Pods from their generation, it is hardly a prevailing trend.   We have Alex Jones and Rush Limbaugh, we have no room to talk. 
    -  Our youth are also watching how the kids from Parkland are being treated.  Its sick and disgusting and hardly a way to get the youth to join your cause(for instance). 
    - The youth are now understanding how they can make a difference and are registering in droves, let's give them something to vote for.  

*  Liberal Anger:

The big new talking point from the right wing echo chamber is that the left is full of anger and hatred and that is what is carrying them through these elections. 

 2 hours ago2 hours agoMoreOutside special interests are trying to capitalize on the anger and motivation of the Far Left to advance their out-of-touch agenda. We, on the other hand, have a positive success story to tell -- Wisconsin is Working! Let’s keep moving
or this from Dan O'Donnell:
Chances are, it wouldn't have mattered.  Liberalism won the day because liberalism in Wisconsin is motivated.  It's angry, it's vengeful, and it's ready to get its revenge and take out its anger on anyone who has even a tangential tie to the Republican Party.  Hate in politics is a powerful motivator, and Democrats in 2018 are more motivated by hate than they have been in decades.
The problem is because Dan O'Donnell and Scott Walker are so full of hate that they assume everyone else is also.    Hate is not a sustainable emotion, unfortunately these two(and their peers) have made a career out of "divide and conquer": 

Now the curtain has been pulled back:

We see that the Great and Powerful OZ (Scott Walker) is nothing but a shell of a man from Iowa, whose only superpower is deception and blind ambition.   

One of the best and most important books to come out the last few years was written by Kathy Cramer called 
The Politics of Resentment: Rural Consciousness in Wisconsin and the Rise of Scott Walker.     A book literally written, about how Scott Walker has mastered the art of resentment and division to maintain his hold on power.   

Liberal anger is much better defined as Wisconsin awakening. 

* The Democratic Party:  

It is time for the party, locally, nationally, to realize that they are not special because they have Stars upon Thars!  You choose to be pay dues and be part of the party, congrats! 

There are some privileges involved, you meet good people, help work on changing government etc...   However you have to understand you joined a group that you liked, not an exclusive club that makes you part of the illuminati. 

For instance, in our recent Supreme Court election, Judge Rebecca Dallot, the so called liberal candidate received 107,760 votes in Dane County(compared to 25276 for her GOP opponent).  The Dane Democratic party numbers around 1000 members.   A quick bit of math, and we see that 106,000 or so people in Dane County see themselves as liberal without actually joining the party!  Try not to treat them as if you are doing them a favor by telling them who, how and when to vote for.   Open your doors for more people to come in and do not think paying $25 dues, makes you a super patriot.    

Also for any candidate, if you see an alphabet group, (ADCC, DCCC etc...) run as far and as fast as you can.     They bring no help, they bring no substance.  They are filled with ego, and people who like to congratulate themselves and tell everyone how smart they are.   They do not come in peace.   

*  The Issues: 

It is time to actually address the issues.  We know that there are so many people in WI living in poverty or just barely above and no one addresses their needs. Time to change that.

Wisconsin is the worst place to raise black children in the country.  When is the last time we have had a politician seriously address that.  It is not something to be proud of.  It is time to change that ranking. 

Small town Wisconsin and small town America are both dwindling.   Factories have closed, their way of life is much less sustainable, their bridges and schools are crumbling and there is deep resentment towards the bigger cities.   That can be changed with a solid infrastructure plan, mass transit making it easier and affordable to reach the bigger cities and affordable high speed internet available to every person in WI.   Yet every one of those fixes has been thoroughly ignored by the GOP in control the last 8 years, time to change that. 

Factory farms have taken over the rural areas of WI, while family farms have been forgotten.   I understand that things have evolved over time, but while things do evolve we can not let them get out of hand.  CAFO's are destroying our land and waterways and now are running unimpeded.   When a loved one dies from cryptosporidium, it is not ok and we need to change that. 

We have a massive teacher exodus on our hands in WI that is seriously affecting our future and our children's education.   We need to get back to investing in public education again.   

Just a few issues that we can run on and win with along with some other tips on how to make sure there actually is a  #bluewave in November!   

What are your thoughts?


  1. Good stuff Jeff. I'd add that Dallet was more inspiring than you think because she went after corruption and stood up to right-wing sleaze like WMC and the NRA. The whole "we go high" mentality needs to be put in the dustbin, and instead we should throw the spotlight back on the crooked right-wing politicians and their puppetmasters. There's a reason "drain the swamp" resonated with some people, and the difference is that Dems can actually mean it when they say they want to clean up government.

    Agree that the whole mentality of doing doors of people who are already going to vote and back you is a waste of time (this applies more for November elections). But on the flip side, if Dems really want to clean up, they need to have a presence in every corner of the state. You saw what happened on Tuesday, when 24 Trump counties voted for Dallet. That reality is probably what led to Scotty's freakout as much as anything.

    Dems don't have a propaganda machine like the GOP does with KLAN radio 1130 and 620, or with White Wisconsin. So they have to be more forceful and consistent with hammering the GOP for their constant failures in governance and rigging of elections. And there are plenty of places to hit them on.

  2. agreed, Start out high but when they go low go low and attack them. Agreed on a presence, and its important to talk to people but that involves more than just doors. Town hall meetings, letters to the editor in local papers, appearances at public events in your area where people can approach you, and they need to sTOP treating Progressive blogs as the enemy.

  3. "These past 8 years in WI, have brought us mass shootings, horrible car crashes, fires, staple business closings, massive protests, police officers murdered, ... etc. etc."

    You forgot: cold winters and the occasional tornado. Yes, for the last 8 years Wisconsin has been hell on earth.

    1. are you equating things that we could prevent with natural disasters