Sunday, November 13, 2016

Reading the internal emails explains this...

...they despised Catholics.

//How did the most qualified person in the history of mankind manage to lose an election she was certain to win? Assuming the world survives the Trump era, historians will long ponder that question. But we found a clue in this amazing anecdote, which opens a Hillary Clinton campaign postmortem by the New York Times’s Amy Chozick:

Last year, a prominent group of supporters asked Hillary Clinton to address a prestigious St. Patrick’s Day gathering at the University of Notre Dame, an invitation that previous presidential candidates had jumped on.

Barack Obama and Joseph R. Biden Jr. had each addressed the group, and former President Bill Clinton was eager for his wife to attend. But Mrs. Clinton’s campaign refused, explaining to the organizers that white Catholics were not the audience she needed to spend time reaching out to.

Chozick does not cite a plausible rationale for that belief, most likely because there isn’t one. White Catholics are a highly competitive demographic, not one that either party can afford to write off or take for granted.

In 2012, according to an exit-poll analysis by the Pew Research Center, Mitt Romney outpolled President Obama among white Catholics, 59% to 40%. Trump led Mrs. Clinton this year, 60% to 37%—a three-point decline in the Democratic total and a four-point widening of the GOP margin.

A chart from the Public Religion Research Institute shows that three of the Obama states Trump carried—Florida, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania—have higher proportions of Catholics than the nation as a whole. Still-uncalled Michigan, where Trump leads in the current count by 0.3% of the vote, is just below the national average. If Mrs. Clinton had carried those four states, she would be president-elect with 307 electoral votes.

Ignoring white Catholics was a tactic; here is how Chozick describes the strategy:

She ceded the white working-class voters who backed Mr. Clinton in 1992. Though she would never have won this demographic, her husband insisted that her campaign aides do more to try to cut into Mr. Trump’s support with these voters. They declined, reasoning that she was better off targeting college-educated suburban voters by hitting Mr. Trump on his temperament.

Instead, they targeted the emerging electorate of young, Latino and African-American voters who catapulted Mr. Obama to victory twice, expecting, mistakenly, that this coalition would support her in nearly the same numbers. They did not.

Pursuing college-educated suburbanites was smart, if obvious. Disdaining uncredentialed whites was obviously foolish. And the Notre Dame snub was foolish for another reason: Not all Catholics are white. Obama received 75% of the Hispanic Catholic vote in 2012, to 21% for Romney. Trump narrowed that gap by 13 points—26% to Mrs. Clinton’s 67%.//

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