The Enthusiasm Gap

Some liberals are really pulling out all of the stops to try and motivate their base. Why, you ask? It seems after nearly 4 years of President Obama in office, people aren’t as, well, hopeful as they used to be.

One might even say there’s an enthusiasm gap.

Peter Roff at U.S. News & World Report writes:

“Republican-leaning voting blocs are more enthusiastic to vote this November,” the folks at Resurgent Republic said Thursday, “which could be the deciding factor in a turnout election. As we head into the final campaign stretch, President Obama faces the unwelcoming reality that he must close the voter enthusiasm gap and improve his performance among key voting subgroups if he is to be successful in his bid for reelection.”

To be fair, groups with innocuous sounding names on both sides are claiming their data says the other side lacks enthusiasm and their voters might not turn out. This happens every cycle.

But, it is fairly obvious to even somewhat disinterested observers that this time around, President Obama’s supporters aren’t as enthused as they were in 2008.

I’ve noticed with interest a bunch of attempts to shore up the party faithful from liberal leaning groups. Not being their target audience, I don’t find them very appealing. Nor can I see how even people who want President Obama to have a second term would either.

The first is “90 Days 90 Reasons.” A webpage created 90 days out that will have a daily reason to support President Obama. It’s an unintentionally hilarious advent calendar for limousine/pop-culture liberals.

The founders described why the founded their website this way:

In late July, they looked around and saw that many of Obama’s voters and donors from 2008 needed to be reminded of all he has accomplished, and all he will do if given another term.

I guess even some on the liberal side of the spectrum can admit that some of the fanboys are down in the doldrums. Which is why they’ve tapped a “wide range of cultural figures” — like fictional facebook founder and famed policy analyst Jesse Eisenberg to provide riveting reasons to support President Obama.

Here’s Jesse’s:

“If it were up to me” he writes, “I’d never leave my apartment.” But he supports President Obama because “he’s seen how the world lives” and feels “more comfortable being represented by someone who’s seen it.”

I guess Jesse doesn’t have many Mormon friends, for if he did, he’d know they go on missions to foreign countries, like France. That’s where Mitt Romney went, and where he learned French. Other candidates for President don’t speak any foreign languages.

If you’re looking for brilliant reasons to support another term for President Obama from luminaries like Ben Gibbard from Death Cab for Cutie and Jim James from My Morning Jacket, be sure to bookmark this page.

The second example is a theatrical rendition of “One day more” from Les Mis, but rewritten to support “One Term More!” I am sure Victor Hugo appreciates his work being butchered by some random Broadway actors.

Nonetheless, I don’t think that many discouraged voters are going to be inspired once again by a bunch of smug, angry liberal actors.

You can just see the hate.

If turning a play — Les Mis of all plays — into a political video is thought to inspire enthusiasm among people other than theatre regulars, it’s a sign that these actors are stupid or liberals really in trouble.

Oh so Angry

Aside from the angry faces and subtle war/revolution references in picking “One day more” — this video is offensive.

Here are some lyrics and their imagery:

“With laws that let ’em stand their ground, Republicans are locked & loaded” is sung with an image of Trayvon Martin.

“Incivility’s a virtue,” — something they might have wanted to reflect on before using a Trayvon Martin image — is paired with a picture of a loon from the Westboro Baptist Church, a non-partisan “church” comprised of nutjobs.

The funniest verse in the song, at least to me, is this one:

Soon Election Day will dawn,
We were meant to hold this seat!
At the ballot box of freedom,
Unemployment’s in retreat!
Now the battle lines are drawn,
And Detroit’s back on its feet!
Will you take your place with me!

Detroit — with an unemployment rate of 17.7% is doing great, just ask anyone there  … if you can find someone there.

Unemployment’s in retreat? This must be some new — glacially slow — form of retreat I don’t know about.

This election will be close. The enthusiasm of voters matters — ask any pollster about the difference between registered voters and likely voters. I doubt these liberal efforts to enthuse voters will move the needle any, only serious events can do that it this point. 

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