January 19, 2010

Is High Turnout in "Massachusettes" Bad? Not Necessarily!

Hatched by Dafydd

Dennis Prager said the turnout in the Massachusetts special Senate election was high. I don't know whether he is correct, whether he misheard -- or even whether some left-leaning reporter tendentiously reported such when it wasn't true; but certainly the Conventional Wisdom ™ is that a low turnout helps the Republican, while a high turnout means the Democrats have gotten their base excited.

I still have no idea about today's turnout in the Bay State -- but I utterly reject the Conventional Wisdom ™ regardless.

If all the polls are accurate, then the enthusiasm is all on Scott Brown's side, not "Marcia" Coakley's. Thus, a big turnout would seem more likely to be due to those who are already enthusiastic... turning out enthusiastically.

A big turnout in Massachusetts would make me think that a whole bunch of Independents, who ordinarily don't vote in special elections, had motivated themselves to the polls to vote for Scott Brown -- and against Martha "Chokely" Coakley, Harry "Pinky" Reid (D-Caesar's Palace, 70%), and Barack H. "Lucky Lefty" Obama. And as Glenn Thrush at Politico suggests (hat tip to Paul at Power Line), even if part of the increased turnout comprises Democrats, they may very well be Democrats rushing out to vote for Scott Brown:

A Democratic operative familiar with the get-out-the-vote push by Martha Coakley's team and boosted late in the game by the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, says that outreach workers in and around Boston have been stunned by the number of Democrats and Obama supporters who are waving them off, saying they'll vote for Scott Brown.

So even assuming the turnout in Massachusetts is high, that's no reason to despair: It could just be the next pre-wave to the tsunami washing towards the Democrats in November.

Hatched by Dafydd on this day, January 19, 2010, at the time of 12:44 PM

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