Do you belong to any non-political groups or activities where politics comes up from time to time?
Facebook is the best example, because it’s a giant public forum, where you can see what people are posting on their “Walls”. Most of the time these are postings about having drinks, walking dogs, getting Starbucks, or slaying vampires (depending on what circle of friends you keep and how close you live to either Sunnydale or Cleveland), but there and there politics sneaks in.
Here’s a note we got from Doris, who spends time on a lot of crafting sites. While there, reading about things pertaining to her hobby, Doris spots bits of political conversations that are more valuable than anything you will read in the comments on actual political sites — because the commenters on political sites are just more attuned to politics than average Americans.
To really get a feeling for what the voters in 2012 are thinking, you can’t put too much credance in conventional thought on political sites. You need to get outside this bubble and see what people are saying in places where politics comes up as an after thought to other things…just like talking to people in a conversation might veer into politics a little, before getting back to kids, careers, pets, cooking, sports, or whatever.
Start looking for “focus groups” in interesting places — like Doris does:
I belong to a crafting blog where there is an area that discusses current events. I have been reading this EXACT talking point lately. Republicans want Obama to do badly. They never gave him a chance. Republicans are obstructionists. Blah, blah, blah… I think they are using this narrative because they know that Obama’s policies are destroying our country, and his poll numbers are tanking. I think this proves what we all know. Obama’s policies were not successful. And they know it and are trying to blame others for its failure….
However, I do not think that this is going to work. Americans are not going to vote for a guy because he is black (we did that once, and it was a disaster!) or because we feel sorry for him. (he is losing sleep ya know over our debt…) People think about their families, job security, the value of their homes, and the price of gas and food. They care about that a heck-of-a-lot more than Obama. Pity is not a good bumpersticker.
What sorts of forums or chat rooms do you belong to outside the political world?
What do people say about politics, especially regarding Obama, in these non-political settings?
I think it’s especially important to keep track of what’s being said in places that moms and grandmoms frequent, because these women will be the key to winning the election in 2012.
Where moms go, so goes the nation.
Friends of Hillbuzz Ray and Susan have put together a great selection of Sarah Palin posters that are available as free downloads. Just download to your computer and print out on your own paper.
Great for annoying Leftist co-workers, posting on construction sites in sanctuary cities, and affixing to telephone poles outside of head shops near Lefty liberal arts colleges.
Thanks to Hillbuzz reader Temple of Mut for making us aware of this article from Reuters:
Keeping in mind that Reuters is part of the Mainstream Media, this special report still contains a number of gems about the current relationship between the GOP and Tea Party movements throughout the Midwest — Ohio in particular.
Several of us at Buzzquarters are from Ohio, and we get back for meetings of the Mineral City Coffee Club whenever we can.
As the left-leaning Brookings Institute pointed out in March, Ohio is important because President Obama Can’t Win the 2012 Election Without It. Not because of the Buckeye state’s 20 electoral votes, but because
Ohio is close to being a microcosm of the country—closer than any other pivotal state. As such, winning Ohio is a statistical “tipping-point” for any presidential election: If a candidate can carry Ohio, he will have appealed to a large enough slice of the national electorate to have won the states that tilt even further in his preferred direction, and he is odds-on to win the race.
And things aren’t looking good for the Cocktail Party GOP in Ohio. Tea Party activists are fed up. They’re fed up with establishment politicians like House Speaker John Boehner of West Chester (a suburb of Cincinnati). They’re fed up with compromise and politics as usual from the Party of Stupid.
On April 25th, about two dozen Tea Party activists from throughout Boehner’s district met with him in the west central Ohio town of Troy, which could star as Small Town U.S.A. in any campaign ad.
One of the 25 or so leaders, all from Boehner’s district, asked him if Republicans would raise America’s $14.3 trillion debt limit.
According to half a dozen attendees interviewed by Reuters, the most powerful Republican in Washington said “yes.”
“And we’re going to have to raise it again in the future,” he added. With the mass retirement of America’s Baby Boomers, he explained, it would take 20 years to balance the U.S. budget and 30 years after that to erase the nation’s huge fiscal deficit.
“You could have knocked me out of my chair,” said Denise Robertson, a computer programer who belongs to the Preble County Liberty Group. “Fifty years?”
She said “my fantasy now” is someone will challenge Boehner in the 2012 Republican primaries. “If we could find someone good to run against him, I’d campaign for them every day,” Robertson said.
The GOP seems to already have forgotten who was responsible for the biggest midterm clock-cleaning in modern U.S. political history, handed to The Left in the November, 2010 elections.
If they are not careful, Tea Party activists all over Ohio — and America — are going to remind them.
Both the Leftists and the GOP may think that “the heat is off” since Tea Party events are fewer and further between. The truth is that Tea Party organizations in Ohio (and elsewhere) have learned a lot since 2008. They’ve moved away from sponsoring rallies (high-profile, but low ROI) to grassroots political activism.
A number of Ohio’s Tea Party organizations got their start as Ron Paul Meetup groups during the 2008 campaign. They’ve moved beyond support of an individual candidate to focus on the fight for individual rights, gun rights, Constitutional governance and free market capitalism in Ohio. The movement has coalesced into an influential and organized statewide alliance of liberty-oriented local groups called the Ohio Liberty Council.
And their efforts are paying off. Liberty activists in Ohio have made history with The Ohio Project, a bid to amend the Ohio Constitution to nullify Obamacare in the Buckeye State. In just over a year, Ohio volunteers have collected over 336,000 signatures and are just 50,000 shy of getting the Health Care Freedom Amendment on the November, 2011 ballot. This is the largest number of signatures ever gathered by volunteer petition circulators in Ohio. This kind of “retail activism” is noted in the Reuters article:
After failing to halt the passage of Obama’s health reform bill, Tea Partiers staffed phone banks, knocked on doors to get out the vote and played a major role in gaining 63 seats for the Republicans in the 2010 elections.
The biggest midterm election year swing since 1938 delivered a large House majority for the Republicans and made gains in the Democratic-controlled Senate.
Flush with victory, Tea Partiers dived headfirst into local and state politics in 2011 — the results of which are expected to affect the state and national elections of 2012.
Their primary foe is still America’s progressive left — it is a given in Ohio, for instance, that the top target for 2012 is Democratic U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown.
But now more than ever before the full force of their ire is directed at the Republican Party establishment.
And, unbelievably, the Cocktail Party GOP doesn’t see it coming. At all. And seems intent on living up to its nickname The Party of Stupid.
According to Ned Ryun, head of American Majority, which provides training for conservative activists, the Republicans’ problem is they mistook their November victory as a sign the Tea Party backed them because its members are conservatives.
“The Republican establishment suffers from a weird belief that somehow the Tea Party will fall in line because it is an adjunct of the Republican Party,” he said. “But the Tea Party is not and never will be an arm of the Republican Party.”
Those of us who read (and write for) Hillbuzz understand that “conservative” or “libertarian” is non synonymous with “Republican.”
The Cocktail Party GOP just doesn’t get it. And if they’re not careful, they’re going to lose Ohio because of their blindness and arrogance.
If we don’t take control of the Republican primary process, we run the risk of having another John McCain shoved down our throats by the mainstream media and Democrats voting in open primaries. And another four years of the worst president in the history of our country.
The first official GOP debate of the 2012 primary season will be this Thursday May 5th at 9pm in South Carolina and it’s being hosted by Fox. The moderators will be Juan Williams, Bret Bair, Chris Wallace and Shannon Bream…..I think this is a pretty fair mix of left and right. The field of candidates that are appearing for the debate is pretty thin. Rick Santorum, Tim Pawlenty, Herman Cain, Gary Johnson and Ron Paul are going to be the only participants. Where’s the Donald? Where’s Gingrich, Bachmann, Daniels and Huckabee? I’m confused as to who has officially thrown their hat in the ring and who hasn’t. Of course, the 2 biggest names that are absent are Sarah Palin and Mitt Romney. Juan Williams thinks that Romney is waiting because “he wants the Republican faithful, especially people with big money, to come to him out of frustration with a mediocre field and give him the nomination by acclamation.” I think he may be right.
So….Juan is asking people to submit debate questions and the panel will consider them for their lineup. This could be fun….if they are really serious about it.
Let’s all get involved with this….even if the field of candidates participating doesn’t excite you too much. Maybe we can weed out the ones who should drop out of the race ASAP. I’m looking forward to hearing from Ron Paul….for some reason, that man scares me. I really, really like Herman Cain but…is he presidential material? I think Tim Pawlenty is about as exciting as a banana sandwich but maybe he will change my mind after the debate.
What do you guys think?
Post the questions that you want asked and then send them to Juan at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This is an Red Team Action Item.
Gold Action Item: Think of ways to consistently ask Americans if they received the hopeychange Obama promised them in 2008
I have been told the Cocktail Party GOP establishment does not want Americans asked on a regular basis if they got the hopeychange Obama promised them in the 2008 election.
Say it with me: the Cocktail Party GOP establishment is stupid, and far too dependent on consultants who eat their crayons.
The thinking (if you stretch the word enough to cover this folly) is that “Republicans need to save this attack for 2012″.
The same way the Party of Stupid is forever saving this, reserving that, and generally abstaining from winning strategies…for one inane reason or another.
The article at the top of this post predicts $6 gas this summer…with a massive surge in food prices. States are so broke, many cannot even afford to keep funding their food stamp programs. That means disaster, not hopeychange, is barrelling down on millions of Americans…many of whom were stupidly Obama voters in 2008.
On a daily basis, people who voted for Obama three years ago need to be asked if they received the hopeychange they were promised and if they are in better shape than they were back when they drank all that Kool-Aid.
I do not see any way that people who did NOT vote for Obama in 2008 will be so charmed by his job performance that they support his re-election.
I have never heard a McCain/Palin voter wish they could time travel and pull the lever for Obama instead…not even for the free ride in an operational, flux-capacitored DeLorean.
That leaves our focus on asking the non-crazy, but misguided 2008 Obama voters if all the hopeychange hype and Media zeal was worth it in THEIR DAILY LIVES.
Make people realize what a bad hiring decision they made in wanting to take a chance on an untested, mysterious, exotic who never delivered on the soaring promises of his job interview.
Give people a BUSINESS and not emotional decision to make…and watch them vote in their economic best interests to evict the Obamas from Washington.
Remember: the GOP Cocktail Party establishment will fumble this, because part of me thinks the consulting firms these fools rely so heavily on WANT to lose important elections.
We have a year and change to prevent this.
And it starts by asking every last Obama voter in the country if they got the hopeychange they were promised.
Does anyone out there REALLY know a soul who is better off today than he or she was before The Golden Age of Hope and Change began?