Monday, July 17, 2006

Twin Cities also push region's strength

WE'VE MOVED! Democratic Convention Watch is now at

I wrote yesterday about how Denver is promoting its bid as representing the whole Mountain West region. Well Minneapolis/St. Paul is playing that game also:

"Here at the headwaters of the Mississippi River, you can be at the headwaters of a political strategy that will win the next election," Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak said at a news conference Monday with his St. Paul counterpart, Chris Coleman.
But the mayors are working hard to repackage Minnesota as part of a region that could determine the outcome of the 2008 election. Together with the swing states of Wisconsin and Iowa, there are 27 electoral votes in play in the Upper Midwest, or the equivalent of Florida. Go downriver to up-for-grabs Missouri and Arkansas and the tally rises to 44 votes - not quite California-sized, but bigger than any other single state.
WCCO adds this:
The crux of their pitch? Midwest values -- red and blue river states up for grabs. "All of those states will be in play in the next election," said Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak. "What we are saying to those candidates is nominate your candidate, put them on a boat, head down the river, and from this great vantage point you can campaign through the heartland of America."
Rybak said a couple of weeks ago:
"The mountains (of Denver) are a pretty picture, but the Mississippi River is a political strategy.

Well, Denver clearly has a region behind its bid also, so this regional battle may turn out to be a wash.

Oh, and by the way, the most successful post-convention "trip"? That would be the Clinton-Gore bus trip in '92, first stopping in Pennsylvania and continuing west through all the major battlegrounds states. And where did that bus trip originate? New York.


Anonymous said...

Ecxept Denver's got the votes the DNC wants, Minn. has the ones they already have. Go Denver!

Anonymous said...

But having the convention where you already have a loyal base is a good thing. Plus, MN was considered to be "up for grabs" in 2004. Also, it's important to remember that Iowa went red and Wisconsin was close (2004). You can't ignore these states b/c you risk losing a good thing. Basically, these states are necessary if you want to win an election!

Anonymous said...

I disagree; scoring the "red region" west is top priority for Dean, and largely the party. With Denver you get a whole new ball game; one we can win. And as for loyalty, Denver is the only city left NOT BIDDING FOR THE 2008 RNC, alike it's the only city with mayor affiliated with the Democratic Party. Minneapolis and New York are nice cities, but Denver IS 2008. I live in Seattle, and based on when my last experiences in Denver, I want to move there. I'm going with the other 61% of Democrats in saying; GO DENVER!

Matt said...

FYI, both Minneapolis and St. Paul have Democratic mayors.

denverdan said...

Kerry spent alot of time and money in 2004 trying to hold democratic states that were leaning to Bush. I think the convention will have to go to Minnesota because they just can't afford to lose it. It could also bolster Wisconsin and bring back Iowa for them too. Dems have slimmer chances of breaking into the West, even though they need to do so. The electoral votes they could get in the West just don't make it worth losing midwestern states.


(NM 5, NV 5. slight chance of CO 9 and/or AZ 10 = iffy 19). The rest of the western states would still be solid R.


(MN 10 and WI 10 strengthened, bringing back Iowa's 7 = more than likely saving 20 and bringing 7 new). Plus helping to strengthen Michigan 17... bringing back Missouri 11?

Strategically, I don't think Denver would be as good of a move as Minneapolis. While Denver might bring NEW electoral votes they didn't get in 2004, Dems can't afford to risk losing midwest battleground states. Of course holding a convention doesn't gaurantee votes, it can bring some if that region's values/issues are talked about. But I don't think western issues will resonate with the rest of the country (immigration? water?)

As far as Denver just "painting a pretty picture," that's what conventions are all about! So, that Minnesota speaker has no idea what he's talkin about when he dissed Denver. Also, it's pretty silly the idea of putting the candidate on a boat and sailing him down the river. American tv watchers are just gonna roll their eyes. At least with Denver you could play up "God Bless America," or "America the Beautiful," with praries and mountains etc (actual live pictures of them). Thats more likely to have a profound impact on viewers then a riverboat ride. It would especially strike an emotional chord with viewers, and Dems who unabashedly wear their hearts on their sleeves.

Anonymous said...

I agree with denverdan on this. Having the convention in Minnesota makes the most sense. While I would love to see it in the west, I don't think it's wise to count on their electoral votes. The midwest has been changing the past few years and we need to make sure that they stay blue (like MN) or change (like Iowa and Missouri could)in our favor.

The only thing that I didn't really agree denverdan on was the riverboat idea. I think it would be brilliant to do this. For example, could you imagine the image of the democrats coming into New Orleans?!? It would be amazing, sad but amazing...

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