Between last weekend's GOPUSA
Issues and Action Conference, the pressures of work and other commitments, and migrating to a new computer system, I'm still not quite back to regular blogging. I just got a new Apple iBook so over the next few weeks will move to that system. I've been on a PC for the past few years so relearning the mac way of doing things will take some getting used to.
My summary of the conference can be found here
. Suffice it to say for now that it was a smashing success and if at all possible I'm going next year. I'll promote it on my site and here also. I met a lot of great people, from state senators to party officials, to ordinary activist people like me. It was quite a diverse group, with people from all walks of life. The first day we spent discussing issues, and the second day action, or how to actually win a campaign.
One panel (moderator and four panelists) talked about the voting groups, or blocs. Raul Damas discussed Hispanics. These folks can be divided into three groups; the radical left which is beyond hope, the "persuadable", and those who will probably vote against us, so the main objective is to simply not energize them against us too much. The Democrats of course use scare tactics "you will have x, y, and z taken away from you", and Kerry will no doubt open the borders if elected. George Pataki got 40% of the Hispanic vote so it can be done.
Another panelist discussed the religious bloc. The single biggest determinant in whether someone will vote GOP is whether they attend church regularly. Of those who go to church once per week, 70% vote Republican. No big surprise there, so the objective is turnout, not persuasion, with these voters. Just the opposite as with Hispanics. The caveat is to not imply that to be a good Christian you need to vote Republican.
Black voters are something of a contradiction. On the one hand Blacks vote Democratic in overwhelming numbers. On the other, they (the ones who actually vote) are overwhelmingly conservative in their social views. Thus, they vote for the Democrats even though they are at odds with them on some core principles. How to convert them? Talk issues not parties. When they tell you what they hate about the GOP or George W Bush, flip it around and say "ok, that's fine, not tell me what you like
about where the GOP or Bush stands on the issues
?" and "It's ok to split your vote. If you want to vote Democratic in your local city election that's fine, but please consider Bush for president." That sort of thing.
According to the panelists there are a lot of "recovering Democrats" out there who would consider voting GOP, we just need to push them over the edge. With Blacks we have to overcome groupthink and disinformation. With Hispanics, different groups need to be approached differently.