Reasons for Optimism III

I don’t know if Oregon here is still listed as a swing state. Probably not, but I don’t think that it ever should have been in the first place.

Oregon was close in 2000, but the Democratic voter registration and GOTV effort this year is the most intense by far that I’ve ever seen. (Canvassers end up canvassing each other.) Nader isn’t a factor this year, and a significant number of moderate Republicans, including former statewide officeholders, have come out in support of Kerry. (The wingers Bush plays to have crippled the Oregon Republican party statewide, and winger control of the legislature has led to crisis after crisis.) Furthermore, I’ve seen reports that in Southern Oregon, which is usually reliably right-wing, Kerry and Edwards are doing far better than expected.

Everything I know tells me that the media are lowballing Kerry’s chances to prevent the bandwagon effect. Some of it is political bias, some of it is pure airheadedness, and some of it might just be the desire to see a close election. But I don’t think that there’s any countervailing anti-Bush media tendency at work, and there’s also not much voter movement in Bush’s direction from Democratic ranks.

Kerry is in the driver’s seat — if the voters get to vote, and if the votes are counted. The only other thing to worry about the October Surprise, and people have been talking about that for so long that its effect should be pretty diluted by now.

(Or I could be wrong. But if I am, I’ll have far more serious things to worry about than simply having miscalled this election. )