One big question exists for me after this election. Is Karl Rove a genius or did John Kerry and the Democrats run the worst campaign in a long time? I give Rove all the credit in the world for running a great campaign but the truth is the Kerry camp along with the DNC ran a really poor campaign. A few observations...
Kerry was never able to get a sound and coherent message out about Iraq. I still am not totally sure what his actually view on the war is. This is where Howard Dean would have been a much better candidate for the dems. He could have pounded at Iraq over and over because he has always had a solid anti war stance.
Unfortunately for Kerry, the more time passed the better the economy got. Really not much he could do about that. However, states like Ohio which the economy has been slower to recover should have been won by Kerry handedly. Ohio should have been a state blue.
This is the issue (according to exit polling which all the sudden we are trusting even though they said Kerry would win Florida and Ohio and well the election, but whatever) that won it for Bush. This is where just being a democrat hurt Kerry. Pro-Gay and Pro-Abortion is anti-traditional values. Homosexuality and abortion weren't really talked about much on the campaign trails, but Homosexuality became a backdoor (no pun intended) issue when 11 states put a gay marriage ban referendums on the ballots. That brought out the morality vote and had a huge affect on this election.
Identifying with the electorate
This is where Kerry lacks the most in my opinion. I mean how does the average American relate to a guy has been rich his whole life, doesn't know the name of lambeau field, and throws like a girl. Not to mention his senatorial droney voice. Bottom line, people didn't buy into Kerry. I have yet to talk to anyone who voted for Kerry because they liked him. They voted for Kerry because he was running against Bush or because they were lifelong dems. It is very hard to win an election just simply being the anti-incumbent. You have to be able to stand on your own.
Kerry's senate record. Did he ever bring up anything he accomplished in his 20 years in Washington? Bush pounded on that off and on for the whole campaign and I believe it had an affect.
Swift Boat Vets for Truth. They basically wasted all the effort put into the democratic national convention. Whether you believe the swift boat vets or not, they put that seed of doubt in your mind about his integrity and whether or not he was worthy of being commander and chief.
So that's why Bush won or better said why Kerry lost. Liberals across America are still feeling the shock and are a bitter bitter lot, but I don't know how they can change this. The nation seems to be drifting right, meaning if the Democrats don't change they will lose more seats and the presidency in '08. A couple things I would do immediately to turn things around if i were a leader in the democratic party: 1. Fire Terry McAuliffe, sure he can raise money but he's been an overall failure. A fresh start is needed. 2. Find a good old boy Southern Democrat to prime for '08, Northwest liberals aren't going to cut it for a long long time.
Here's hoping Bush has a successful next four years and doesn't make me regret voting for him. He'll deffinitely have more room to do what he wants now considering he doesn't have to worry about reelection and has a majority in both houses.