Jonathan Martin at NRO takes a thought-provoking look at the GOP losses in Virginia and Missouri this year and wonders whether the losses indicate something more problematic for Republicans than a temporary "Democratic wave." Could it be shifting demographics? In other words, are the politics of GOP stalwarts unsupported by the new voters moving into the large metropolitan areas of these and other states? Many of the analysts (Larry Sabato, Jack Oliver) discussed in the article argue that the GOP needs to emphasize the "compassionate" side of conservatism again in order to make in-roads with these voters. I see what they are getting at, but I must disagree.
We all know that negative campaigns work best--but how about a negative campaign that focuses on ideas instead of pornographic novels or 30 year old racist comments for a change? How about instead of coming off as defensive and qualifying what we are as "compassionate" (as if we should have to do that) we simply demonstrate how utterly lacking in compassion most liberal/Democratic policy ideas actually are? Why not make them defend their ideas by pointing out the damage they have always inflicted when tried? Why not insist that they distinguish themselves as "smart" liberals?
In any event, the article is worth a read and serious consideration. Demographics do shift and a political party ignores these things at its peril.