December 07, 2003

A Revolution in Electioneering

More thoughts on the 2004 US election from Dick Morris, the architect of President Clinton's 1996 campaign victory:

"For years, our politics has been descending into bribery and corruption by the campaign contribution system. And as the cost of waging campaigns has increased, the amount of bribery going on through these campaign contributions has increased geometrically.

"But at the same time that that's happening, the reason the cost of campaigning is going up is that fewer and fewer Americans are watching television. Television viewing rates among men under 40 years old are tiny in the United States these days. And people are watching cable without advertising, or they're online, or VCRs or whatever. Some are even talking to their family.

"And the result is that you have only about a third of the people watching television with advertising. So the politicians are spending three times as much money on advertising to reach them.

"But what Howard Dean did is he went with the voters to the Internet, and he developed a truly mass political base online."

Still, Morris thinks Dean will be too leftist to beat Bush:

"There's a fascinating statistic in US politics. If you go to church regularly, or synagogue, you vote Republican two to one. If you don't, you vote Democrat two to one."


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