Intro by Michael Miller
I wouldnâ€™t expect my readers to spend much time reading anything from the New York Times. But I couldnâ€™t resist condensing the following from a very long, over 6,500 words, essay entitled â€œWho Lost Ohioâ€� in the Sunday Magazine.
It chronicles the activity of Americans Coming Together, or ACT, one of the big money, liberal elite 527 groups with strong ties to the Clintons (Dick Morris warned of this over a year ago: Clinton's Replacing the Democratic Party) .
They blew into Ohio in private jets and rental cars; an army of union organizers and a cadre of full time professional political operatives. Oh they worked hard, very hard, spending millions and hiring an army of paid staffers and attracting Hollywood celebrities and liberal volunteers from out of state to come in and take the prize they felt would guarantee the defeat of President Bush. But their elitist arrogance kept them blind to the new reality of politics that Ohio represents.
I saw them at work firsthand when I was in Ohio in October. A car with Illinois plates (blue state) carrying large Kerry Edwards signs around Bowling Green.
The paragraphs regarding Delaware County, where I attended Ohio Wesleyan University and where my name was first on the ballot for a seat on the GOP Central Committee were especially gratifying, as was the outcome.
My comments added in red.
Condensed fromThe New York Times > Magazine > Who Lost Ohio?
By MATT BAI
Published: November 21, 2004
In ACT and its partners, Democrats told me, they were building the most efficient turnout machine in political history. I returned to Ohio in the final days of the campaign to see the power of this grass-roots behemoth in action. ACT had evolved into something glamorous, a kind of sleek new political vehicle for the Volvo-driving set. Perhaps because they supported other liberal groups aligned with ACT, like Emily's List or the Sierra Club, or perhaps because ACT had a certain outsider cachet, thousands of volunteers from New York, New England and California chose to work for the organization in Ohio instead of the Kerry campaign; among them, I met a book editor from Manhattan and a massage therapist from Santa Barbara.
A few nights earlier, in Cleveland, Bouchard and I visited a basement-level phone bank where the ACT volunteers included the actors Matt Dillon and Timothy Hutton. Bouchard had molded an impressive, almost military operation. He took over Ohio from a previous director last April, after running field operations for Bob Graham and then Wesley Clark in each man's failed bid for the Democratic presidential nomination. So the guy has a track record of working for LOSERS!
Rosenthal, ACT's chief executive officer and Bou-chard's boss, had been lent a private jet for the closing days of the campaign by one of the group's wealthy donors.
Rosenthal, the former political director of the A.F.L.-C.I.O. and a labor department official in the Clinton administration, who was known inside the party as a brilliant, almost legendary field strategist.''For the life of me, I can't see how we could lose Ohio,'' Rosenthal had told me over lunch in Washington the previous week. ''The only way they win Ohio is to steal it like they did Florida four years ago.'' Some of these folks really do need therapy. No wonder they donâ€™t get it!
The Dem strategy: This is how white Democrats have always won elections in close states like Ohio -- by cajoling every last black urban voter to go to the polls. In Ohio, Republicans have been able to count on winning somewhere around 75 of the state's 88 counties in any statewide election. Except this time around, Bush took the highest percentage of black votes EVER for a Republicanâ€¦
What gnawed at Bouchard was that nowhere we went in Franklin County, a vigorously contested swing county, did we see any hint of a strong Republican presence -- no signs, no door-knockers, no Bush supporters handing out leaflets at the polls. This seemed only to increase Lindenfeld's (pro union hack) confidence. He didn't believe in the Republican turnout plan. ''What they talked about is a dream,'' he told me at one point. ''We've got the reality. They're wishing they had what we've got.'' For Bouchard, however, the silence was unsettling. How could there be such a thing as a stealth get-out-the-vote drive? Turned out to be a dream alright! A NIGHTMARE for you!
As night fell, we reached the city of Delaware and found a polling place at a recreation center. The only people in the parking lot were a drenched couple holding Kerry-Edwards signs. Inside, the polling place was empty. ''Look at this,'' Lindenfeld said to me triumphantly. ''Does this look like a busy polling place? Look around. There's no one here.'' He repeated this several times, making the point that turnout in the outlying areas was tailing off, while voters were lined up around the block back in Columbus. ''Do you see any Republicans?'' he asked me, motioning around the parking lot.
In fact, a quick investigation of the voter rolls, taped to the wall outside the voting area, indicated that the polling place was dead for a less encouraging reason: most of the voters in the two precincts assigned to the recreation center had already voted. The officials in charge told me that 1,175 of the 1,730 registered voters on the rolls had cast their ballots. In other words, turnout in those precincts was up to an impressive 68 percent, and there were still two hours left before the polls closed. (When it was over, Delaware County as a whole would post an astounding turnout rate of 78 percent, with two out of three votes going to Bush.) Way to go Delawareâ€¦ In your FACE OWU (my alma mater) liberal professors!
But Ohio, like much of the country, was undergoing a demographic shift of historic proportions, and Republicans were learning to exploit their advantage in rapidly expanding rural areas that organizers like Lindenfeld, for all their technological innovation, just didn't understand. In shiny new town-house communities, canvassing could be done quietly by neighbors; you didn't need vans and pagers. Polling places could accommodate all the voters in a precinct without ever giving the appearance of being overrun. In the old days, these towns and counties had been nothing but little pockets of voters, and Republicans hadn't bothered to expend the energy to organize them. But now the exurban populations had reached critical mass (Delaware County alone had grown by almost one-third since the 2000 election), and Republicans were building their own kind of quiet but ruthlessly efficient turnout machine.
This effort wasn't visible to Democrats because it was taking place on an entirely new terrain, in counties that Democrats had some vague notion of, but which they never expected could generate so many votes. The 10 Ohio counties with the highest turnout percentages, many of them small and growing, all went for Bush, and none of them had a turnout rate of less than 75 percent.
Oh Cry Me A River
The volunteers huddled around the computer thought they were watching two thoroughbreds race neck and neck to the final yard, but for a seasoned campaigner like Bouchard, it felt more like watching his horse fade down the stretch. The window of opportunity for Kerry appeared to be closing. It was around 1 in the morning when Brokaw painted Ohio red. ''It is now hard to see how George W. Bush is not re-elected president of the United States,'' the anchor intoned. A quiet disbelief descended on the room. You could hear the creak of a folding chair, a ringing cellphone, the intermittent sob. ''This is the end of the United States of America,'' I heard one man declare as he left the room. Heyâ€¦ I hear Sudan is nice this time of year!
For Democrats, this new phenomenon on Election Day felt like some kind of horror movie, with conservative voters rising up out of the hills and condo communities in numbers the Kerry forces never knew existed. ''They just came in droves,'' Jennifer Palmieri told me two days after the election. ''We didn't know they had that room to grow. It's like, 'Crunch all you want -- we'll make more.' They just make more Republicans.
I would also suggest the article be re-titled. Itâ€™s not so much who LOST Ohio, that was Kerryâ€¦ But it should be abundantly clear to all but the most delusional leftist that BUSH WON OHIO!!!