Elephant Ears

This blog is dedicated to the political happenings in the Valley and Southwest Virginia. As the the name implies, this blog will have posts based on what is heard by this elephant's (GOPer's) ears. It is also a great treat to get while at the county fair or a carnival.

Monday, November 13, 2006

How Did He Get It Wrong?

That's what Karl Rove is asking himself. According to Newsweek via Drudge, Karl Rove was still optomistic on election night until around 11 PM when he informed the President that the GOP would lose the House.

Rove had been adamant about the fact that he believed (and all his metrics told him) that the GOP would hold both houses of Congress due to microtargeting, money advantage and other factors.

According to the article, he is going to convene a study by GOP strategists to see why his metrics were wrong this time around.

One suggestion I have for him is that he was dead wrong about pressing the war as an issue; it was a losing one for the GOP. It worked in 2004 b/c it wasn't viewed nearly as bad as it is now. Continuing to focus on the war probably hurt us more than anything (waiting to fire Rummy after the election was stupid as well).


  • At 11/13/2006 11:10 AM, Blogger CR UVa said…

    Republicans really should have hit the economy. It is so strong right now that no Democrat could give a good argument as to how it might be bad. The war was a losing issue this year, no ifs, ands, or buts (not to say that the issue of Iraq is not imporant; on the contrary, there is still a lot of work to be done there).

  • At 11/13/2006 11:36 AM, Blogger GOPHokie said…

    I agree CR, the economy should have been the focus.

  • At 11/13/2006 12:51 PM, Anonymous brimur said…

    I don't think that would have done you much better. Though the stock market is doing okay (and only okay once you factor for inflation) most people polled (somewhere in the 70s) do not feel good about their personal economy. It's the old Reagan standard of economic prosperity- "Are you better off now than you were..." And most people's answer is an emphatic no. A strong economy cannot be defined by broad indicators and averages alone- it must include indicators of how the middle class is doing. The middle class is not doing well. Wages aren't growing or aren't growing fast enough. Health care costs and energy costs are skyrocketing. And the job market is permeated by insecurity.

    Besides, I never understood why people define a good economy by the stock market. The stock market sometimes does well just because the bond market sucks. That doesn't mean anything for most people's everyday perception.

    We need both parties to come together to make some real efforts to help the business sector develop and compete even more vigorously in emerging industries from IT, to health, to energy.

  • At 11/13/2006 1:28 PM, Blogger GOPHokie said…

    brimur, I would argue people's perception of the economy is largely determined by what they hear in the media and from their peers.
    The problem is that the media is showing the economy in a bad light, so everyone assumes everyone else's situation sucks.

    I know where I live in the last few years most of the textile jobs have left the area and everyone thinks the economy is bad as a result. I reality most of the people I know who worked at those jobs got their GED or community college credits (paid for by their former employer) and now they are working as nurses and other skilled jobs that pay better than their former ones.

    I dont define the good economy by the stock market alone; but by home ownership, unemployment, GDP growth, and everything.

    All the economic indicators show good things, not just the Dow Jones.

  • At 11/13/2006 2:45 PM, Anonymous brimur said…

    No, people don't answer the question "Are you personally better off economically than you were 6 years ago?" according to what the media says. No spin will make that true.

    All those indicators you mentioned still do not capture information like median wages, wage growth, etc. The pie may be growing but the middle class piece of it is shrinking.

  • At 11/13/2006 4:10 PM, Blogger GOPHokie said…

    brimur, wage growth is 4.3% in the past year vs. an inflation rate of 3.4%. People are making more REAL money than they were last year.

    When we ask if they are better off, its a function of how good the economy is plus how they have handled it. Just b/c they cashed out all their equity in their house to buy a nice vacation doesn't mean the economy sucks now b/c they can't do that every year.

    The government has done all they can do to make the economy good, people have to take responsibility for the rest.

  • At 11/13/2006 4:13 PM, Blogger GOPHokie said…

    Also, the stock market is usually an indicator of economic growth b/c corportate earnings rise before wages do.
    Typically the stock market does well 6 months or so before the rest of the economy catches up, so hopefully we have even better times to come (and surely the dems will get the credit).

  • At 11/13/2006 7:37 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    If the Dems raise the minimum wage over two dollars, many businesses will have to close and how will that help the economy. Most of the ppl working at minimum wage, don't deserve what the company is paying them now to talk on their cell phones and text message while they should be working and serving the ppl. The price of everything will go higher and this is where the $$$$ will hit the fan!!!

  • At 11/14/2006 9:45 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    7:37 PM: You should be writing the Republican party platform.


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