Following up on my earlier post about Hillary Clinton’s ground team in Nevada, the Las Vegas Sun also had a very good piece on the subject today: How Clinton hit pay dirt.
In Nevada, Mook looked at the landscape and found the following: Democrats, despite the predictions of naysayers, had taken a real interest in the presidential caucus. He feared that the campaign would fail if it limited itself to rounding up support only from voters with a history of participation.
So as he spoke to volunteers that cold December Saturday, Mook’s usual confidence was clearly shaken. Clinton needed to mine the electorate for voters the campaign originally thought would not participate.
It was a tall order. Campaigns have an easier time if they can work from lists of “likely voters.”
“We need to work hard now,” Mook told the group. “If the caucus were held today, we’d do OK. We would not be as successful as we want to be.” […]
Mook said in an interview Saturday that his staff groaned at the suggestion of expanding the universe of voters, especially to such a radical new goal: Find 60,000 more. Some analysts estimated that was as much as the entire expected turnout statewide. (In August, the Clinton goal was 24,752 supporters.)
And of course it helped Clinton that “Nevadan Democrats put their faith in Clinton and her experience.”
At dozens of precinct locations voters interviewed by the Sun cited Clinton’s experience as the overriding factor in their decision.
As Mook said, “Sen. Clinton spent a lot of time here, and her presence here was more substantive and focused more on issues. (The voters) decided it was not a popularity contest.”
Jeralyn chimes in on TalkLeft with some thoughts on this piece and the coming primaries, that I totally agree with:
Change and experience again. I continue to believe that when it comes time to vote, those adversely affected by our tumbling economy are going to be less concerned with aspirational change and more apt to ask which candidate has both a concrete economic program and a track record showing the ability to push it through.
I said the other day here that Clinton has nailed it on the economy. Voters are getting that.