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The Washington Post: Should the Democrats Be Panicking?

From the Washington Post:

Why doesn’t Hillary Clinton have a double-digit lead over Donald Trump? The fact that she doesn’t is making a lot of Democrats wonder whether hers is a flawed candidacy. Even though Trump is certainly doing his part to alienate voters and supply more material for effective negative ads that use his own words against him, Clinton’s campaign is stagnant. According to today’s RealClearPolitics polling average, her lead over Trump is less than 3 percentage points. Her situation makes me think of the old story about the company that tried several marketing campaigns to sell its dog food and nothing seemed to work. Sales were stuck. Finally, the problem was solved when someone noticed that the dogs didn’t like the dog food. Well, does Clinton have a similar problem? After all, this is a “change” election, and she is not a “change” candidate. In an era of great dissatisfaction with “business as usual,” she is the living embodiment of business as usual. She is not what voters are looking for.

Voters looking for change are repelled by Clinton yet repulsed by Trump. This political gravitational anomaly has produced an odd equilibrium that is keeping the race close. So should the Democrats be panicking? Sometimes, the power of panic can be effective. But in this case, Team Hillary shouldn’t panic, if for no other reason than it simply would not help. And, its operational advantages — combined with Trump’s unfocused, sloppy approach to the serious business of running for president — might be enough for Clinton to stagger into the White House.

Clinton has a campaign designed with a beginning, a middle and an end. There is no doubt that John Podesta and others on her team have designed a strategy along with budgets, ad buys and messages that will all build toward Election Day. Plus, the Clinton campaign is well underway in building a ground game in key states, while Trump is not. It is safe to assume that Clinton’s organizational efforts will give her a 2-to-4-point advantage. Also, I expect the Clinton campaign will have a meaningful cash advantage in the last weeks of the campaign.

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