Winning Elections

If you consider that an election is just marketing, then you would do what a marketer would do — look at who is gaining market share and copy what they are doing.

Why? Because you are going after the same market, the same population of consumers. So, if McDonald’s introduces Filet-o-Fish with huge success, Burger King has to introduce Big Fish sandwich. Not because BK thinks fish is good for you, but because BK and McD are both chasing the same drive-through, fast-food consumer, and that consumer wants a fish sandwich.

Both Republicans and Democrats, conservatives and progressives / liberals are chasing the same population – the voters in our district or state. These voters have voted for Republicans in the past. They voted for Trump, Snyder, and Trott (and Bentivolio and McCotter).

We can’t ignore those wins. We can’t assume that they will change their minds this time. Why would they? Because our candidate is more honest? more sensible? more tolerant? more polite? No – they need a reason to reject their own past choices before they even consider our candidate.

Unless you believe that the population has actually changed since the last election, or that your progressive candidate is mesmerizing, or that the voters will cheer you when you teach them how ignorant they were — unless you having these fantasies, you’ll have to offer those voters what they have voted for in the past many elections. They want lower taxes. They want less federal government. They want more military. They want flags and guns and bibles.

I strongly believe that fact-based logic won’t persuade enough voters to win the election. The evidence of history tells us so – logical reasoning, truth-telling, and fact-checking don’t produce winners.

Emotion works. Prejudice works. Hate works. Fear works. Anger works. Conviction works. Money often works. Lies work. Negatives work.

In my lifetime, there were two presidential candidates I would have voted FOR: JFK and Barack Obama. Every other one would have been, or was, a vote AGAINST the other guy – against Goldwater, Nixon, Ford, Reagan, Bush, Bush and Trump.

I don’t believe elections are about truth and honor and fairness. Elections are about winning. And winning comes from power.