Campaigns/Elections

If Voter Interest in Campaign 2008 Is at Record-High Levels, Why Do I Keep Yawning Every Time I See McCain and Obama?

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From a July 10 Pew Research Center look at registered-voter "engagement" in the upcoming election, which will take place sometime later this year:

The outlook for the presidential election at mid-year is substantially different than at comparable points in time in recent campaigns. First, turnout is likely to be higher this fall—perhaps much higher than in previous elections—as voter interest continues at record levels. Second, as has been the case since the start of the campaign, Democrats enjoy a substantial engagement advantage over Republicans that may significantly alter the composition of the November electorate.

Higher engagement, says Pew, is likely to increase voter turnour, which is likely to push the Dems way over the top.

What say you, Hit & Run readers? Are you more engaged, less engaged, or whatever this time around? Will you vote this time like your whole world depended on it? Or is it simply it is what it is time? (I think I lost myself there). Who will speak now for the vanishing voters, lord love their souls?

Here's a chart that explains the engagement level better than Sister Mary Ignatius ever could:

More here.

Other Pew fun facts: Fifty-six percent of voters think there should be a third major party.

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  1. LOL, yawning? Everytime I See “McSame” I want top puke!

    JT
    http://www.Ultimate-Anonymity.com

  2. 3rd Major Party? They keep selling out and getting absorbed, right?

  3. We would definitely be better of with a third major party, or even a two-and-a-half party system like Britain’s.

  4. Next you’ll be telling me the youngsters are energized, and this time, they’ll put the bong down and actually vote. Because this time is different, right?

  5. Don’t vote, don’t care. I know I am going to get screwed regardless.

  6. We’re screwed either way really but did anyone actually expect McCain to energize anybody? I mean come on, he looks like he could use some energizing and perhaps some neck bolts.

  7. Well, less engaged than when I was an Anderson supporter or Dole supporter, but more engaged than I have been in 12 years.

    On average, no change.

  8. “If voting would change things they’d make it illegal”.

    I’d like to unregister. I’ll be buying that lottery ticket again since that way at least I have a slight chance of a positive outcome on election day.

  9. http://www.californiacollegedems.com/cdems/PDFs/Majority.pdf

    Interesting observations about the difference between Gen Xers and Gen Y in voting patterns.

    In 2004, more people aged 18-30 voted than people 65 or older, for the first time in history.

  10. And look what they accomplished, joe.

    I just don’t see that the federal government will ever be turned around.

  11. Familiarity breeds contempt.

    Hence, we junkies detect no major change, since we were always junkies.

  12. And look what they accomplished, joe.

    You mean flipping both houses of Congress?

  13. You mean flipping both houses of Congress?

    Wow. That happened in 2004?

  14. You know, Reinmoose, you COULD read the report. Just a thought.

  15. I will probably be voting, especially if there’s some really outrageous choice on my state’s ballot. I mean, there are going to be other election things to vote on that day anyway, I think, so I might as well go and vote for that.
    One year we had a party on the ballot called the “rent is too high” party – that was pretty cool. I didn’t vote for them, but sometimes the spectacle is worth it.

  16. Things are so different, now. The good guys are at the reins, making this a happier, safer, freer, land.

  17. If Voter Interest in Campaign 2008 Is at Record-High Levels, Why Do I Keep Yawning Every Time I See McCain and Obama?

    Because, unlike normal people, we’ve been discussing this election since 2006.

  18. You know, Reinmoose, you COULD read the report. Just a thought.

    Done and done. I didn’t see anything relevant to the balance of power changing in congress in 2004, however. Funny, that.

  19. P Brooks | August 6, 2008, 10:00am | #

    Things are so different, now. The good guys are at the reins, making this a happier, safer, freer, land.

    Nope, just checked. Bush still president, Cheney still VP.

  20. If you don’t care at all about the candidates, please go drop a blank ballot in the box.
    At least that sends a message.

  21. oh wait – you meant the report from the california college dems that you linked to. Let me try that one now.

  22. I didn’t see anything relevant to the balance of power changing in congress in 2004, however.

    Nor did you see anything to that effect in my comment.

    What you did see, if you actually read the report, was a jump in voting levels among 18-30 year old voting rates of 11% between 2002 and 2006…

    Quick, Reinmoose, what election came between 2002 and 2006?

    …a trendwhich resulted in record turnout in 2004, and which continued into 2006, producing the margin of victory which flipped both houses of Congress.

    I consistently underestimate how determined people can be to play dumb when they’re really invested emotionally in not getting something.

  23. joe: The fact that you consider flipping Congress an end in itself shows just how much of a hack you are. Is the war over? No? Then EABOD.

  24. I did find this in your article:
    “An historic shift in party control of Congress
    occurred in 2006 as the Democratic Party won
    a majority in both chambers of Congress.”

    Now, let me explain something to you.

    When you say:
    In 2004, more people aged 18-30 voted than people 65 or older, for the first time in history.

    and someone replies with:
    And look what they accomplished, joe.

    and you respond with something that did not happen in 2004, that makes it NOT an argument against what the other person said.

  25. I simply refuse to believe that 72% of the electorate has given a lot of thought to this election. A classic example of people telling the pollster what they wish was true, not what is actually true.

    My prediction: Turnout will be a little higher, adjusted for population growth, than in 2004.

  26. Nigel,

    The fact that you don’t consider the changes in trends regarding voting patterns to be a legitimate topic of conversation, if it doesn’t advance your particular political agenda, shows what a politically correct totalitarian you are.

    I’m making a point about the shape of the political landscape. You don’t care about the shape of the political landscape? OK, fine, why are you whining at me?

    Reinmoose,

    Actually, since the same thing caused the record turnout in 2004 also caused the flipping of both houses of Congress in 2006, then yes, pointing out that the dynamic in question – the rise in voter participation among 18-30 year olds during the 2000s – had a major effect most certainly IS responsive to an argument that that dynamic didn’t accomplish anything.

    Please, explain more to me. You have such a meaningful poinit, and I’m obviously not making any sense here.

  27. RC,

    My prediction: Turnout will be a little higher, adjusted for population growth, than in 2004.

    Agreed. Breaking it down, Democratic turnout will be noticeably higher, and Republican turnout lower, producing a slight net gain.

  28. The fact that you don’t consider the changes in trends regarding voting patterns to be a legitimate topic of conversation, if it doesn’t advance your particular political agenda, shows what a politically correct totalitarian you are.

    “Politically correct totalitarian”? What the hell?

    Ignoring your habitual vomiting of ludicrous insults when you’re losing an argument, you’re upset with me because I’m pointing out that nothing changed when the Democrats took over. That’s about the dumbest bitching point I’ve seen from you.

  29. Now two things: one, they know they are lying about what my point is. But the other thing is they are making fun of an observation that every expert says is absolutely true, that voting rates among 18-30 year olds have risen considerably, setting records in 2004 and flipping Congress in 2006.

    It’s like, it’s like these guys take pride in being ignorant.

  30. No joe, I’m not “making fun of [that] observation”. I’m saying that, despite your approving regurgitation of it, it accomplished nothing.

  31. I’m not upset, Nigel. This is awesome. I rarely get to chop necks stuck out so far.

    BTW, the first insult in the exchange was you calling me a hack – which reminds me, were you making some point about insults = losing?

    I’m pointing out that nothing changed when the Democrats took over.

    Only from a libertarian point of view. To the much more significant segment of the population that considers there to be a meaningful difference between Republicans and Democrats, the fact that the ship of state has begun the process of turning around is quite significant.

  32. I wonder when joe’s book “How to Make Friends by Insulting Anyone Who Disagrees With You” is coming out. It’s sure to be a best-seller.

  33. Democrats in 2004: “The most important election of our time”

  34. One problem is that we can’t agree on what that 3rd party should be? Green? Libertarian?

    What that pole really says is that most people would like to see a party that matches their own personal views and priorities at least marginally better than either of the current two.

  35. I’m not upset, Nigel. This is awesome. I rarely get to chop necks stuck out so far.

    Are you high? You’re dropping the axe on your own toes.

    BTW, the first insult in the exchange was you calling me a hack – which reminds me, were you making some point about insults = losing?

    No, ludicrous insults indicate you know you’re losing. Everyone knows you’re a hack.

    Only from a libertarian point of view. To the much more significant segment of the population that considers there to be a meaningful difference between Republicans and Democrats, the fact that the ship of state has begun the process of turning around is quite significant.

    So because the majority believes it, it’s true? Of course my comments are made from a libertarian point of view.

  36. Whoa, I borked those tags up pretty hard.

  37. Also, given that I have a job, I’m swearing off this thread.

  38. Only from a libertarian point of view. To the much more significant segment of the population that considers there to be a meaningful difference between Republicans and Democrats, the fact that the ship of state has begun the process of turning around is quite significant.

    Oh I dunno joe. I’m about as friendly to the Democratic agenda as a lib can get, and I haven’t noticed anything worth anything coming out of Congress since 2006.

    They couldn’t even bring themselves to de-fund (and thus end) the war. For fuck’s sake, they bitched about not being able to get re-elected if they did that, as if being re-elected was more important than stopping the killing!

  39. umm.. no.
    I bet your logic professor allowed you not to show work, and none of your other professors cared that you just assumed that everyone knew what you were talking about.
    Is it really that hard to type out something like:
    “Sure, Kerry still didn’t get elected, but the trend led to a flipping in balance of power in Congress in 2006.”
    No, it isn’t.
    But then it would look like you were contributing to a conversation rather than refuting correct statement.

  40. *refuting a correct statement

  41. I’m more engaged only to the extent that Barr is a far better candidate than what the Libertarians put up in 2004.

  42. Reinmoose, in the future, I’ll try to make an effort not to overestimate your ability to follow a train of logic with more than two cars.

    Elemenope,

    I haven’t noticed anything worth anything coming out of Congress since 2006. Which is why I wrote that bit about a ship turning around.

    This Congress, like Bill Clinton in the 90s, hasn’t been able to accomplish much of an affirmative agenda because of the relative strength of the opposition (Republicans controlling Congress in the 90s, controlling the White House and having a large minority in Congress in the 2000s). What they were able to do is play defense against a Republican agenda.

  43. Maybe ther’s no interest because the two candiddates will not make any meaningful cahanges to this country’s exploitative economis structure?

  44. Reinmoose, in the future, I’ll try to make an effort not to overestimate your ability to follow a train of logic with more than two cars.

    You kill me. I knew what you meant by your initial statement, but it’s still funny that you thought it was a refutation to what Nigel Watt said.

  45. I knew what you meant by your initial statement, and just decided to play dumb, and pretend to think I said the Democrats won back Congress in 2004.

    You obviously didn’t think that.

    I just do not understand the urge to pretend to be befuddled. It just doesn’t make any sense to me.

  46. I’m much more engaged, if by engaged one means the level of entertainment one gets from observing people stupid enough to give a shit.

  47. and pretend to think I said the Democrats won back Congress in 2004.

    The thing is that you DID say that. I know that’s not what you MEANT. This is why it’s funny, or sad.

    I’m not pretending, nor am I befuddled.

    Do you disagree that the statement “they flipped both houses” is not a correct response to “look what they accomplished in 2004?” Do you disagree that “they flipped both houses in 2006” is not even in disagreement with “they did not accomplish anything in 2004?”

  48. the fact that the ship of state has begun the process of turning around is quite significant.

    If you are saying the “ship of state” is circling the drain, I suppose this could be true.

  49. Do you disagree that the statement “they flipped both houses” is not a correct response to “look what they accomplished in 2004?” Do you disagree that “they flipped both houses in 2006” is not even in disagreement with “they did not accomplish anything in 2004?”

    Nobody wrote “what they accomplished in 2004,” chief.

    Here, let me quote the exchange for you:

    joe | August 6, 2008, 9:40am | #

    http://www.californiacollegedems.com/cdems/PDFs/Majority.pdf

    Interesting observations about the difference between Gen Xers and Gen Y in voting patterns.

    In 2004, more people aged 18-30 voted than people 65 or older, for the first time in history.


    And look what they accomplished, joe.

    You mean flipping both houses of Congress?

    The 18-30 year olds who set a turnout record in 2004 flipped Congress in 2006.

    You know this. I know you know this. You know I know you know this. I know you know I know you know this. You know I know you know I know you know this.

    And yet, you decided to pretend to believe wrote that they flipped Congress in 2004.

    The entire part about “what they accomplished in 2004” is your misreading, and pretended misunderstanding, of what was actually written.

  50. This Congress, like Bill Clinton in the 90s, hasn’t been able to accomplish much of an affirmative agenda because of the relative strength of the opposition (Republicans controlling Congress in the 90s, controlling the White House and having a large minority in Congress in the 2000s). What they were able to do is play defense against a Republican agenda.

    And so…what’s their excuse for not de-funding the war, again? It doesn’t require a veto-proof majority; the House controls the purse-strings, and all they have to do is *not* pass a bill (which, I will admit, seems a feat utterly beyond their thought processes).

    I do remember Rahm Emanuel being booed pretty harshly by a Bill Maher audience way back in 2006 for laying lame excuse after lame excuse on this one. They didn’t buy it then, and I’m not buying it now. So what if they would lose twenty seats in red districts? Isn’t that worth saving some lives?

  51. like – okay – whatever major loser

  52. So what if they would lose twenty seats in red districts? Isn’t that worth saving some lives?

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

    Oh my… (wipes tears from eyes)

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

  53. Elemenope,

    And so…what’s their excuse for not de-funding the war, again?

    I’d say it has something to do with: This Congress, like Bill Clinton in the 90s, hasn’t been able to accomplish much of an affirmative agenda because of the relative strength of the opposition (Republicans controlling Congress in the 90s, controlling the White House and having a large minority in Congress in the 2000s). What they were able to do is play defense against a Republican agenda.

    The fact that the procedure for defunding the war is administratively easy – just don’t pass nuthin – doesn’t mean that is is politically easy. When 50%+ of each house of Congress, as well as the president, wants something to pass, it’s going to pass in some form. 50%+ is the Repblican caucus + less than 5% of Dems.

    So what if they would lose twenty seats in red districts? Isn’t that worth saving some lives? 90-95% of Democrats voted for the cutoff/timelines bill in March 2007. It isn’t a case of those Democrats going along with the war and refusing to end it, but of a fringe of the Democratic majority switching sides to support the war.

  54. Epi —

    I didn’t say they *did* think this way. Only that they *should*. You know, as a moral imperative.

    I am not so naive as to think that the average partisan hack wouldn’t place the lives of people they’ve never met over the health of their precious party.

    But if a politician actually stood up and, you know, said it, they might find more support than their advisers would predict.

  55. I didn’t say they *did* think this way. Only that they *should*. You know, as a moral imperative.

    I know. I was laughing at the idea of even speculating about it, since politicians are such venal scum. Even people like Ron Paul do sleazy shit to maintain their seat.

  56. It isn’t a case of those Democrats going along with the war and refusing to end it, but of a fringe of the Democratic majority switching sides to support the war.

    Would it be so much to ask for the DNC to, um, de-fund those turncoats? They’re obviously fucking useless for the aims of the party. Fucking cast them out into the outer darkness or something. Run some primary challengers, at least!

    What good is a party if it can’t maintain voting discipline?

  57. You mean flipping both houses of Congress?

    So we exchanged Giant Douche for Turd Sandwich. Color me impressed.

  58. What good is a party if it can’t maintain voting discipline?

    Very little, in a situation of small majorities.

  59. When you actively recruit conservative Democrats in order to win red states/districts, you have to accept the consequences.

    Congresspeople do not represent their parties, they represent their local constituents. And they act against the wishes of these constituents at their own peril.

  60. The original question was this:

    Episiarch | August 6, 2008, 9:31am | #

    Next you’ll be telling me the youngsters are energized, and this time, they’ll put the bong down and actually vote. Because this time is different, right?

    Once the answer to that question was established, people started asking different questions.

  61. ….they bitched about not being able to get re-elected if they did that, as if being re-elected was more important than stopping the killing!

    Didn’t Heinlein write something along the lines of ‘The most important crisis any politician faces is the next election?’

    I’m old enough to know that this is pretty much true, it doesn’t matter which team or year, all elections look alike. Members of one team will castigate the other for stupid policy/statements that are red meat for the party core, but will justify anything stupid their candidate says.

    Like Nick, I’m yawning at this election too, the only new development is that McCain hasn’t had the standard dumb republican label thrown at him yet. We’ve already had the normal stuff: “the Dem candidate is a socialist,” “Reps are dictatorial warmongers,” “Dems are effete intellectuals,” “the Rep hate machine,”…. blah, blah, blah.

  62. Does anyone else think it’s funny that “following election news very closely” is on a steady climb since 1992?

  63. A difference that makes no difference is no difference. At least in 1994, there was a veneer of change. We are due for a new party to rise, because these two have become practically indistinguishable, except for the lies they tell their respective bases.

  64. Althouse is calling this a pro McCain ad.

  65. Isn’t Ann Althouse the one who claimed that the jammies the kid wore in the “3AM” ad, which had “Good Night” written on them, were carefully folded to reveal the letters N-I-G, in order to slur Obama?

  66. “I’ll see you at the debate, bitches.” Man, she is better than the other major party candidates!

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