Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Texas - Part of the 50 State Strategy

Obama's Campaign To Help Local Democrats Win In TX (The Houston Chronicle)

When Barack Obama's presidential campaign and national Democratic officials talk about putting resources into Texas this year, they're not necessarily focused on beating Republican John McCain. Then again, maybe they are...

The Obama campaign has promised to put 15 coordinators in the state to help Texas down ballot Democratic Candidates win the five seats the party needs for a State House majority and to win in Harris County. Gaining and holding a Democratic majority in the Texas House would help control the redistricting process in 2011 when Texas is expected to gain 3 more seats in the U.S House of Representatives.

Obama's campaign currently projects that the state's 34 electoral votes likely will go to McCain. Then again, McCain's lead over Obama in Texas is likely giving Republicans in the state some concern. Republican pollster Mike Baselice is reported by The Houston Chronicle to have said that the problem for Republicans is not what Obama is going to do [in Texas] but a belief by GOP voters that the nation is on the wrong track. "Half, if not more than half, the Republicans think the country is off-track. That is more concern to me than Obama sending 15 people to the state," Baselice said.

According to a July 2008 Reuters/Zogby national poll of likely voters, 73% of those polled believe the nation is on the wrong track. Democrats have the most negative view of the country’s direction, with 84% saying the U.S. is on the wrong track, a slight decrease from 86% who said the same in June. The vast majority of independents take a similar view, with 82% who said the country is on the wrong track, falling from 86% who said the same last month. More than half of Republicans now believe the nation is headed on the wrong track (55%), up from 51% in June.

The dour mood among many Republicans, who now feel their party leaders have lead the country in the wrong direction, could explain McCain's not so strong 43.3 to 38.9 point lead over Obama in Texas, according to Pollster.com. With McCain polling under 50 percent on top of his not so strong 4.4 percent lead over Obama in Texas, the 15 organizers that the Obama campaign is sending to Texas seems like a prudent investment. Polling numbers showing unhappy Texas Republicans combined with strongly motivated Democrats across all of Texas, including here in Collin County, suggests that, just possibly, Texas Democrats will yet play a prominent roll in setting the nation on a new road on election day!

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