Sunday, January 27, 2013

One takeaway from yesterday

Via KHOU.

Even some of Alvarado’s closest political allies privately concede defeating Garcia will be difficult, especially after trailing in this weekend’s election. Garcia’s lead in the general election will help her attract campaign funds from contributors hoping to buy favor with the next state senator. 

Charles has more if you need it. Has anyone calculated the per-vote expense for the two runoff participants yet?

2 comments:

PDiddie, aka Perry Hussein Dorrell said...

The race in SD-6 looks like more of an auction than an election. This concerns me because the GOP can decide the outcome in SD-6 by spending their own or one of their concession-tender’s pocket change to throw a thousand votes one way or the other.

That is because the GOP has superior voter identification and mobilization technology. For one thing, it is close-coupled to the county voter roll, voter history, and other databases, while ours is not.

So there were almost 8,000 newly registered voters in in SD-6 following the November election... and possibly a mass purge in December. However, many of these voters had no voter history because they voted for the first time or because the Tax Office obliterated their voter history by assigning them a new certificate number.

Turnout plummeted by over 120,000 voters while registration increased by almost 3%.

That is what happens when large donors and their consultants have no intention or capability to increase political participation rates. It is a formula for catastrophe in 2013 and 2014, as it was in 2010.

I understand the consultants’ interest in maximizing $/vote rates but not the donors’ or the candidates’.

But of course that seems inevitable in a political culture of concession-tending that values sycophancy over proficiency.

I agree with Chairman Lewis’s directive to keep the party executive neutral. And I suppose that includes me.

But the sad fact is that the county party is not just neutral but essentially useless:

1) The local party has only what trickles down the DNC/TDP or DCCC/HCDP patronage-chain.

2) Democrats in Harris County do not have access to technology that the Obama campaign debuted in here in 2008.

3) The TDP and HCDP have filed and settled lawsuits over voter registration without ever discovering or remedying much of anything important.

So despite being a minority, the GOP has the bundlers, consultants, and candidates at a disadvantage. The technology and information available to Democrats is obsolete and expensive.

And the DNC is now moving to make that worst by hoarding and marking-up the 2012 Obama campaign technology:

http://www.theverge.com/2013/1/22/3902746/obama-heads-back-office-battle-rages-over-tech-that-got-him-reelected

Here are the strategic problems that this situation poses for the county party:

First, the GOP uses the statewide and countywide voter roll to systematically disqualify, suspend, cancel, and purge a disproportionate number of latent Democratic voters. This is not old-school racial discrimination; it is wicked discrimination of every other sort data-mining technology supports; a “credit-scored franchise”.

Second, Democrats have to counter such vote suppression by technical means, since there is nothing our Democratic legislators can do about it or that GOP judges will do about it.

Third, while Democrats in Washington have superior technology to Republicans in Washington, the GOP in Houston is competitive with Democrats in Chicago and way ahead of Democrats or Republicans in Washington.

To get ahead of the curve, Democrats in Harris County need technology superior to any in Washington or Chicago, not technology that trickles down from the DNC or DCCC, technology that is already obsolete and marked up to benefit various cronies.

Why is this important?

If the GOP, with little expenditure of money, can decide the race in SD-6, they can also decide the race for Mayor of the City of Houston.

That is not just Jared Woodfill’s intent, it is his capability.

Sadly, Democrats have as many strategies as they have mercenary consultants. The latest whiz kid, Jeremy Bird, has “270 Strategies”. Wow! He must be the greatest Napoleon wannabe since Santa Anna or George McClellan!

Seriously, just as programmers know that the plural of system is non-system, the plural of strategy is no-strategy. Hence, Democratic investments in tactics, logistics, signals, ordnance, and finance are likely to be squandered again.

PDiddie, aka Perry Hussein Dorrell said...

The above was submitted by JR Behrman via email.