Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Hillary News & Views 10.18: Downballot Democrats & The Expanding Battleground Map

Today’s Hillary News & Views focuses on Clinton’s expansion of the battleground map, and how it will potentially impact downballot Democrats. 

Politico reports:
Hillary Clinton’s campaign is moving to pour new money into down-ballot races in an attempt to swing the Senate back to Democrats and claw back seats in the House, hoping to leverage Donald Trump's implosion into renewed Democratic control of Congress.
Clinton, who entered October with more money than any other candidate ever at her disposal, will spend more than $6 million total on paid media and get-out-the-vote efforts in the battleground states of Ohio, Florida, Pennsylvania, Nevada, North Carolina, Iowa, and New Hampshire — each of which also has Senate races — said campaign manager Robby Mook on a conference call with reporters on Monday.
In addition, the campaign will throw $1 million into Indiana and Missouri, two states where Clinton trails Trump, but where Senate Democrats see obvious opportunities to pick up seats.
On Monday, Mook noted that the coordinated effort includes 455 offices in the swing states alone, “and those are open and available to all Democratic candidates."
He said the overall investment in the coordinated campaign has been over $100 million, reaching gubernatorial, Senate, and House races.

New York Times reports:
Hillary Clinton’s campaign is planning its most ambitious push yet into traditionally right-leaning states, a new offensive aimed at extending her growing advantage over Donald J. Trump while bolstering down-ballot candidates in what party leaders increasingly suggest could be a sweeping victory for Democrats at every level.
In Indiana and Missouri, Mr. Mook said, the campaign will spend a total of $1 million to drive voter turnout, despite what he acknowledged was an “uphill battle” for Mrs. Clinton in two states that could determine control of the Senate. Mrs. Clinton is also directing more money to a series of presidential battleground states with competitive House races.
The double-barreled assault illustrates her priorities three weeks before Election Day. She hopes to hand Mr. Trump a loss so humiliating that it jars him and Republicans, removing any doubt about the wisdom of running on a grievance-oriented platform. But she also is demonstrating to the congressional Democrats with whom she may soon be working that she is also is dedicated to expanding their ranks.
“I think it’s an act of good will, because her numbers look good and some of our races are tighter,” said Representative Dina Titus of Nevada, one of the states receiving cash. “But it’s also an important move, because she’s going to need friends to get her appointments approved, to have our help breaking through the obstruction on the other side to get legislation through.”
NBC News reports:
The pivot is a sign that Clinton is confident enough in her own prospects to start thinking about what comes after Nov. 8, when she'll need a friendly Senate to approve her nominees, and would like to help Democrats make inroads in the House. Her advisers feel they've made Trump as radioactive as possible, so now is the time to use him against his colleagues.
Clinton aides and Capitol Hill strategists said they're coordinating more closely, both on message and in more tactical issues, like divvying up voters to target in their mobilization efforts.
"We had to run on parallel tracks for a long time, not necessarily in contrast but apart, and now we're finally in sync," said a Democratic strategist working on House races who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss relations with the Clinton campaign.
The Daily Beast reports:
Hillary Clinton’s team has ramped up efforts for her presidential campaign in both Texas and Arizona. With a new one-week ad buy in Texas, the campaign has released a video emphasizing the longtime politician’s Dallas Morning News endorsement, which will appear in Dallas, Houston, Austin, and San Antonio, according to The Texas Tribune’s Patrick Svitek. Chelsea Clinton, Bernie Sanders, and Michelle Obama will all appear in Arizona this week. Clinton campaign manager Robby Mook said the team is also investing an additional $2 million in advertisements in the state.
Salon reports:
With roughly three weeks to Election Day, Republican strategists nationwide publicly concede Hillary Clinton has a firm grip on the 270 Electoral College votes needed to win the White House — and may be on her way to an even more decisive victory over Donald Trump.
“He is on track to totally and completely melting down,” said Republican pollster Whit Ayers, who is advising Florida Sen. Marco Rubio’s re-election campaign. Like many Republican strategists, he was willing to speak publicly about the GOP nominee’s rough road ahead at the end of an unprecedented campaign.
In Utah, Trump’s deep unpopularity among the large population of Mormon voters could lead to four candidates winning 10 percent or more of the state’s vote. That kind of uncertainty opens the door to a win there for Clinton or for third-party candidates Evan McMullin and Gary Johnson.
In Arizona, won by the Republican nominee in all but one election since 1952, Trump’s characterization of some Hispanic immigrants as criminals has turned off many in the state’s growing and Democratic-leaning Hispanic community.
GOP nominees have carried Georgia in seven of the last eight presidential elections. But about a quarter of the state’s voters are African American, a reliably Democratic-voting bloc. Like Virginia, Georgia is also home to well-educated young professionals more likely to favor Clinton, said Chris Jankowski, a Virginia-based national GOP consultant.
“With Trump bleeding out, he could find himself competing to win the white vote in Georgia,” Jankowski said. “That’s when you know it’s over.”
CNN reports:
The campaign announced Monday morning that first lady Michelle Obama, who's been a forceful Clinton surrogate, is expected to go to Arizona on Thursday. The Clinton campaign is also expanding its television ad buy and direct mail starting this week.
"This is a state that would really foreclose a way for Donald Trump to win the White House," Clinton campaign manager Robby Mook told reporters on a conference call Monday. 
Bernie Sanders, a Clinton surrogate who aides feel can boost turnout with young people, will also headline two campaign rallies in Flagstaff and Tucson, Arizona, on Tuesday and Chelsea Clinton will headline a rally in Tempe at Arizona State University on Wednesday. 
The events are the clearest attempt by Clinton's campaign to contest a state that has not voted for a Democrat presidential nominee since Bill Clinton in 1996.
Richmond Times-Dispatch reports:
Virginia’s Fairfax and Loudoun counties are seeing some of the largest spikes in early voting in the 2016 presidential election, another positive sign for Democrats who feel Hillary Clinton has a strong advantage over Republican Donald J. Trump in the former swing state.
Statewide, early voting was up more than 22 percent over 2012 with 25 days to go before the presidential election, according to an analysis by the Virginia Public Access Project. The increase was strongest by far in populous Northern Virginia, where Democrats typically run up large margins that Republicans struggle to match in the more conservative, rural parts of Virginia.
In Fairfax, which delivered the most Democratic votes for President Barack Obama in 2012, early voting was up more than 73 percent. In Loudoun, which had the second-most Obama votes in 2012, early voting was up almost 53 percent.
FiveThirtyEight reports:
We could be looking at the largest gender gap in a presidential election since at least 1952: Men are favoring the Republican nominee, Donald Trump, in typical numbers, but a historically overwhelming share of women say they will vote for the Democrat, Hillary Clinton.
As my colleague Nate Silver has pointed out, women are winning this election for Clinton. Between the historic nature of Clinton’s candidacy, Trump’s record of misogynistic comments and now the Trump tape and allegations of sexual assault against Trump, American men and women are incredibly split on the 2016 election. But that split isn’t symmetrical. In an average of the most recent live-interview polls from each pollster to test the race in October, Clinton holds a 20-percentage-point advantage among women, and Trump is winning more narrowly among men.
Clinton is leading by about 6 or 7 percentage points nationally in the FiveThirtyEight polls-only forecast. Basically, the vote among men looks “normal”; the split among women does not. That is, the historically large gender gap this election is because women are disproportionately favoring one candidate (Clinton) — to an extent we wouldn’t expect them to in a normal election given the “fundamentals.”
Mariska Hargitay writes for Elle:
As the 2016 election nears, I cannot urge strongly enough: Be involved. Vote.
As for where I stand, I'm with her. I stand with Hillary, enthusiastically and with all conviction.
I can't think of a more succinct rallying cry for the anti-violence movement than Hillary's campaign slogan: Stronger together. We must indeed all work together to dismantle the deeply entrenched societal attitudes that have helped perpetuate this violence for so long, attitudes that have found such a dismaying spokesman during this election cycle.
The challenges we face as a nation in bringing an end to this violence are formidable. We need a President—and an administration—who will not only keep these issues at the forefront of domestic and international policy, but also will hold out a vision for a future free from these crimes. Whether it is arguing for change in how campuses address the epidemic of sexual assault, drawing attention to the use of rape as a weapon of war, or advocating for the criminal justice system to do all that it can to ensure victims of sexual assault have full access to all the tools at law enforcement's disposal, including the mandatory testing of all rape kits, Hillary has a vision and a plan for action. And after a lifetime dedicated to working for the rights of women and girls, her vision and her plan are informed, hard-won, and comprehensive.
Melissa McEwan writes for Shareblue:
It is within this falsified context — created with countless headlines about how she is unlikable or uninspiring; about how she isn’t doing “well enough” with women, or Black voters, or Millennials; about the size of her rallies or the tone of her voice — that many Trump supporters have found a compelling basis for why their candidate must be winning.
They all love Trump, and no one likes Clinton.
The insistent concealment of evidence of enthusiasm for Clinton is comprehensive: The dearth of photos of her enthusiastic supporters; the refusal to regard as evidence of enthusiasm her loyal and diverse campaign staff; the millions of votes she received in the primary to win her party’s nomination.
And now persists the myth that no one is all that excited about Clinton. Which is, in part, underwriting the conviction of Trump supporters that the whole thing must be corrupt if he loses.

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