Never mind what you stand for or what you believe, if you want to get elected to a statewide office it’s just a numbers game.
Of course, you already knew that, but there are times when our most cynical thoughts about how politics works are confirmed in such a way that there can be no doubt about this game we are called to participate in every November.
Monday, was one of those times, when a reporter at the National Review got her hands on a leaked campaign strategy memo for Democrat Michelle Nunn.
The document, produced last year, lays out a fairly detailed plan about how Nunn should go about putting together the money and the votes to win the seat for U.S. Senate on Nov. 4.
There’s really nothing very shocking in the plan, except for the blunt language it uses to layout the campaign’s strategy for victory. As it is, we’re not used to politicians or their handlers saying anything straight and to the point. All bets are hedged and every position on any issue has been smoothed of any rough edges and polished to the point where it has become too slippery to be grasped.
Nunn’s people have determined she needs about 1.4 million votes to win in November. (That’s assuming a 52 percent turnout of about 5.3 million registered voters.)
It makes plain who her supporters are expected to be, blacks, young, urban whites and Hispanic voters. In fact, each registered voter has been given a potential “score,” which predicts how likely they will vote for Nunn.
They have already ruled out my father (and all his peers).
“For example, we may know that a young, urban white woman who is part of an international frequent flyer program is more likely to support Nunn than an older white man in North Georgia who does not travel.” (Sorry, dad.)
In addition, messages have been crafted to appeal to certain groups, not necessarily because they will vote, but because they can be exploited for money.
The memo has Nunn spending as much as 80 percent of her time raising funds.
The plan has Nunn sticking close to Atlanta (where the money is) and sticking even closer to big-time donors with deep pockets.
Where does that leave you and me? Standing in line at the polls, hoping that exercising our right isn’t another exercise in futility.
But like I said, Nunn’s memo isn’t shocking. All campaigns nowadays have similar documents.
We just don’t get to read them.