I spent a while today talking with a well connected Democrat. Interestingly, despite very good polling for Cathy Cox a lot (more than just this friend) of Democrats still think Taylor is going to win. They all cite what they consider Taylor’s greater experience in elected politics, Cathy Cox’s appearance as the more liberal candidate, and Taylor’s theorized support in the black community.
Also, several Dems, including this one, are theorizing that Taylor, through outside groups, will be able to make strong inroads in both the black and conservative Dem communities by painting Cox as a liberal supported by gay rights groups and others. A significant urban constituency will not go for that, but the thinking is that if Taylor can tie up black voters through cultural issues — connecting through the church — and suburban and rural conservative Democrats, he will be able to beat Cox.
Taylor, it is presumed, will make the case that he is right on the cultural issues and on the social/economic/other issues that black voters and conservative Democrats care about. He will attempt to contrast himself from Cox on those conservative social issues — issues where black voters are actually aligned more with evangelical Republicans than liberal Democrats.
Interestingly, I have had several Democrats tell me that they “know” what Taylor has on Cox and outside groups are already being tapped to spread the information. Vague hints are all I get, but one told me, “Mark knows Cathy will try to take on his ethics. He intends to put her in a position that would neutralize the criticism against him.”
Lastly, several elected Democrats tell me they consider the House and Senate to be fairly safe for the GOP and the Democrats really think they can take out the Governor and Kathy Cox, while holding all the other state wide seats.
Says one, “By the time Cagle and Reed are done with each other, no Republican is going to be capable of getting elected in that position. Secretary of State is perhaps our weakest link, and we’re sure we can even take that.” He also pointed out that Lieutenant Governor would be a “weak link” for the Democrats except for the expected intra-party blood bath on the Republican side.