A contradiction or not?

I’ve been wondering about something for a while, and, judging by previous posts and comments, some of you have been as well; perhaps a Reed follower or two can help me out with this:

How do you reconcile the idea that “low turnout helps Reed” with the claim that he is (in his own words) “the grassroots candidate,” and will have “the most effective, grass-roots, get-out-the-vote effort that this state has ever seen in a down-ballot campaign


  1. Both. He wants the average Republican primary voter to not come to the polls, and wants to increase turnout among highly motivated individuals who have something in common with his candidacy.

    Primaries are by definition low turnout elections, so field can be important. If a Georgian is only about 10% likely to vote in the Republican primary (which I think is accurate) but evangelical Christians who will support Ralph are 25% likely because of his efforts, well, it’s pretty clear how both can be true.

    In that context, it is in Ralph’s interest to have a very negative campaign on the airwaves from both candidates, so that voters are either turned off and skip the primary or skip that race. I think it’s clear that by his nature Ralph has a small army of very committed supporters that he will dominate among but that Cagle would probably carry the rest of the average voters (but not by as large of a margin).

    Ralph wants as few average voters out as possible and as many dedicated Ralph supporters as he can get.

  2. landman says:

    Cagle supporters get your people to the polls,its all about turnout now,so spread the word and get out the vote.What Ralph does at this point is of little importance compared to whatt we have to do in our gotv effort.
    Hope top see as many of you as possible raising a toast to the next Lt.Gov of Georgia in Duluth tommorrow night.

    CAGLE ’06

  3. Mike Hassinger says:

    Chrisishardcore is on target. Reed’s base is rock solid. Call them “values voters,” “evangelicals,” or “social conservatives,” they are “broken glass” Republicans -who would walk barefoot across broken glass to vote for him. Reed’s great strength has always been in turning those people out.

    Knowing that, Reed has waged a very negative campaign with the goal of pulling Cagle’s support down and pushing the undecideds either away from Cagle or away from the race altogether. (Cagle’s mistake in this race was strategic -he allowed himself to get pulled into the negative campaign that Reed needs, but to his credit, Cagle has done a hell of a job fighting back.)

    If Reed is successful at keeping everyone but his own evangelical base away from the polls on Tuesday, I think he will have damaged the Republican party very, very badly come November.

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