Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Sign Of The Times?

By Cernig

The Las Vegas Sun had an interesting look-back at the Nevada caucuses on Sunday. It seems many indy and Republican voters were re-registering as Dems.
Perhaps the biggest winner in Saturday’s caucus will be the state Democratic Party. Judging from observations by Sun reporters at precincts across the state, many voters who had been registered as independents or Republicans declared themselves Democrats.

Caucuses are intended to enrich political parties in advance of general elections. Despite the intramural elbow-throwing among the competing Democratic campaigns, Saturday’s caucus may embolden the state party as it heads into the national election in November.

...many Republican leaders took notice of what the Democratic Party had created.

“Whichever Republican nominee survives will have to take a hard look at what Democrats accomplished in the last 12 months, and will have to put a lot of resources on the ground here,” said Robert Uithoven, a veteran Republican consultant.

Whether newly registered Democrats reflect a one-day spike or will remain loyal to the party is the next question. Some Republicans think that if Clinton is the nominee, lost party members might return to the fold.

“If we have a good Republican candidate, the pendulum swings,” said Pete Ernaut, chairman of the Nevada Republican caucus. “If Hillary is the nominee, the chances of keeping crossover registration is much less likely.”

...Barack Obama, in particular, targeted Elko, in a county where 24 percent of voters were registered Democrats. In August, 900 people turned out to hear him speak; last week he drew about 1,300 people, filling a high school gymnasium.

Among his supporters: former Republican Rita Todd, a 50-year-old caregiver who said she’d stick with the party and support Clinton should she win the party nomination in Denver.
This via intrepid and tireless researcher, Kat, who is suspicious of what's going on and writes "somebody tell Kos that two parties can play this game."

So what do you think? Signs of a groundswell movement towards a Dem candidate? If so, would it survive a Clinton nomination? Republican dirty tricks to get Clinton nominated as the more beatable candidate?

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