Discover more from Hopium Chronicles By Simon Rosenberg
Biden's Successful G20, New Pods, I'd Much Rather Be Us Than Them, Ballot Progress in FL
The Monday Hopium roundup. Welcome new subscribers!
Happy Monday all! The House returns this week, and we’ll learn quickly whether we’re going to have another Republican government shutdown this fall. Early voting in Virginia starts on September 22nd. The effort to get a ballot initiative to roll back DeSantis’ 6 week abortion ban in front of Florida voters crossed a major threshold last week. Thanks to those in the Hopium community who are working on this vital project. Both the Biden campaign and the SuperPAC launched major new ad efforts in recent days. You can find links to the ads below. I am deeply encouraged by the ads themselves and that the campaign has been turned on now in earnest - it is time.
The President has had a very successful G20/Asia trip where among other things he announced a far-sighted economic and trade corridor linking India, the Middle East and Europe: With Xi and Putin and Absent, Biden Steps Into The Void to Woo Allies. While we remember 9/11 today, note that due to the hard work of so many in the US and allied governments, America has not suffered a major *foreign* terrorist attack on our soil since that dark day.
The White House released this short video about the G20:
Now to our Monday roundup……..
New Pods and Press - In her Sunday Washington Post column, Jennifer Rubin cites one of my recent Hopium posts:
Third, even if you think polling is somewhat reliable, there’s no evidence that polling more than a year (or even eight months) before a presidential election is accurate. Democratic consultant Simon Rosenberg (one of the few to debunk the red wave in advance of the 2022 midterms) recently wrote: “At the end of the day polling is only a snapshot into a moment, and cannot predict anything. Things change all the time in politics — change is the constant.”
I talk about the polls and our current political moment in two terrific new podcasts. The first is a far-ranging talk with Reed Galen of the Lincoln Project. The second is the White Flag show with former Republican Congressman Joe Walsh. I also joined Mehdi Hasan last night on MSNBC to talk about how when it comes to 2024 I would much rather be us than them. Here’s a clip:
Tue, September 19th, 7pm ET - Hopium Paid Subscriber Political Briefing and Hangout - RSVP here.
Tue, September 26th, 7pm ET - Full Hopium Community Political Briefing and Discussion - RSVP here.
The Economy is Strong, Inflation is Down, There Is No Recession On The Horizon And America Is A Global Leader on Climate Once Again
Election and Polling Analysis - I Would Much Rather Be Us Than Them
On Biden’s Age (New)
My August Political Briefing and Discussion (good orientation for new subscribers)
The Election Data I Am Focused On
Democrats have averaged 51% of the vote over the last 4 Presidential elections, our best showing over 4 elections since FDR’s Presidency.
Democrats have won more votes in 7 of the last 8 Presidential elections, the best popular vote run of any political party in US history.
In a “red wave” year, 2022, Democrats gained ground from 2020 in 7 key battlegrounds: AZ, CO, GA, MI, MN, NH, PA. We also picked up 4 state legislative chambers, 2 governorships, and 1 US Senate seat. As we’ve written 2022 was not a single nationalized election, but really two elections - a bluer election in the battleground where we gained, and a redder election outside where we did not. We’ve seen this strong Dem performance continue into 2023 with impressive wins in CO, FL, OH, PA and WI. A recent 538 analysis finds Dems outperforming the partisan lean in districts this year by an average of 10 points in 38 special elections across the US - this is a big deal, and similar to what we saw post Dobbs in 2022.
Democrats are having their best run in the Southwest since the 1940s and 50s. In 2004 Bush won AZ, CO, NM, NV, Rs controlled 5 of their 8 Senate seats, 14 of their 21 House seats. In 2020 Biden was the first Democratic President to win all 4 of these states in a single election since FDR. Today Rs control none of those 8 Senate seats and we control 14 of 24 House seats there.
Can we get to 55% nationally in 2024? I think so.
Biden Campaign Comms and Ads - Off To A Very Strong Start
Biden’s Strong Launch, Day 2 (more really good ads)
Our Democratic Grassroots Is Stronger Than It’s Even Been/Becoming An Info Warrior for Democracy/Getting Louder/The Democratic Party Is Strong
Sharing Your Work With Others in The Hopium Community (Fun, Exciting and Inspiring)
Getting to 55 and The Importance of The Youth Vote
Interview with Harvard’s John Della Volpe on The Youth Vote
Interview with the Civics Center Laura Brill and Expanding Youth Voter Registration
Republicans Are Saddled With Trump, MAGA, Dobbs and Treason
Hopium Chronicles Basics
What I Mean By Hopium (Audio)
With Democrats Things Get Better - August, 2023
Finally, here’s how Ron Brownstein of CNN and The Atlantic wrote about this political moment and our emerging opportunity:
Simon Rosenberg, the long-time Democratic strategist who was proven right as the most prominent public skeptic of the “red wave” theory in 2022, argues that Trump, in particular, is unlikely to match his 47% of the vote from 2020 if the GOP nominates him again. “We are starting at a place where it is far more likely in my mind that he gets to 45% than he gets to 49%,” Rosenberg said. “And if he gets to 45%, we have the opportunity to get up to 55%. The key for Democrats is we have to imagine growing and expanding our coalition for it to happen.”
Beyond the personal doubts about Trump among voters outside the GOP coalition, Democrats such as Rosenberg and Anzalone see several other factors that give Biden a chance to widen his winning margin from the last election. Perhaps the most important of those are the slowdown in inflation, continued strength of the job market, and signs of accelerating recovery in the stock market – all of which are already stirring some gains in consumer confidence. Democrats are encouraged as well by recent declines in the number of undocumented immigrants attempting to cross the Southern border and the crime rate in big cities – two issues on which polls show substantial disappointment in Biden’s performance.
Another change since 2020 is the broad public backlash, especially in Democratic-leaning and swing states, against the 2022 Supreme Court decision ending the constitutional right to abortion, which Trump has directly claimed credit for engineering through his nominations to the court. Finally, compared to 2020, the electorate in 2024 will likely include significantly more young people in Generation Z, a group that is preponderantly supporting Democrats, and fewer Whites without a college degree, now the GOP’s best group.
All of these factors, Rosenberg said, create “an opportunity” for Democrats to amass a bigger majority next year than most consider possible. But to get there, he argues, the party will need to think bigger, particularly in its efforts to mobilize younger voters aging into the electorate. “It’s a man on the moon kind of mindset,” Rosenberg said. “We have to want to go there to get there. We have to build a strategy to take away political real estate from the Republicans because they are giving us the opportunity to take it away from them.”
Many Republican strategists privately agree that the combined effect of the January 6 insurrection and the court’s abortion decision will make it difficult for Trump to expand his support from 2020 if the GOP nominates him again.
Keep working hard all - Simon