As the popularity of John McCain’s surprise pick for vice president, Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, continues to surge and for the first time polls show McCain tied or with a slight advantage over Barack Obama, some are beginning to wonder if the Democrats still don’t get it.
In an op-ed piece in The New York Daily News today, Michael Goodwin makes that case.
Now, anyone who reads Goodwin knows he is a conservative and that alone might cause some people to dismiss his claims, but smart Democrats might want to read a little closer. How is it that Bill Clinton is the only Democrat since 1976 to be elected to the White House despite the party being able to gain control of the House and the Senate more than once during the same time period?
Yeah, that thing called the electoral map has something to do with it, but there is more to winning than just maps.
Goodwin’s larger point shouldn’t be missed among Democrats who have sat for weeks wondering what happened to the blistering lead Obama and their party enjoyed just a few months ago: The pattern is not new.
Democrats have an unflappable faith that American voters will see through all the character attacks and mud-slinging and vote for the candidate that best serves them. And being Democrats, they naturally believe that candidate is their guy. But, as was the case with most every Democratic nominee for president since Carter, Al Gore and John Kerry included, that apparent strategy of hoping the American public will sift through the rhetoric and personal attacks and vote on the issues hasn’t worked.
It most likely won’t work this year either.