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| | | |-+  Please don't get mad at me, but why did Gore lose Tennessee?
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Author Topic: Please don't get mad at me, but why did Gore lose Tennessee?  (Read 20261 times)
Ronnie
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« on: June 09, 2008, 12:27:14 am »
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I mean, Clinton won the state in both '92 and '96 (even though the Republican candidates would have won it if Ross Perot wasn't on the ballot).  He was a senator for the state from 1985 to 1993, and was close with the state.

I just don't understand why Gore would write off his home state.  If he would have campaigned there just a little bit, there would be a good chance that he would be our president of the United States.
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« Reply #1 on: June 09, 2008, 12:41:57 am »
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Wrong board.

EDIT: Fixed.
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« Reply #2 on: June 09, 2008, 12:43:52 am »
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He would've been defeated in 2004 anyway by McCain, so he would've only served one term.
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« Reply #3 on: June 09, 2008, 01:06:12 am »
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Gore was perceived as too liberal.
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« Reply #4 on: June 09, 2008, 02:30:32 am »
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And he really wasn't a native of the state in any meaningful way.  He grew up in D.C. and spent only his summers in the state.  When he became a Congressman and then a Senator, he basically only spent campaign season there.  He didn't speak like them.  He didn't act like them.  He wasn't one of them.

Many people called this to happen early in the process, and yet no one in the media really believed it until election night.
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« Reply #5 on: June 09, 2008, 02:44:16 am »
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You all pretty much summed it up. I remember Election Day 2000 that was the first election that I really paid any attention. I didn't really pay attention to individual states polls, just national ones, so I would have had no idea that Massachusetts was supposed to be a blue state or Alabama was to be red state. Anything that turned red on the map called for excessive cheering.

I was VERY surprised that Gore lost Tennessee, living in Memphis, I thought the state would vote the way we did. I was happy it didn't nonetheless Smiley

I do think Gore would have carried TN had he run against McCain that year.
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« Reply #6 on: June 09, 2008, 05:31:18 am »
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even though the Republican candidates would have won it if Ross Perot wasn't on the ballot.
Eh. Where do Republicans get this silly idee from that Perot's 92 voters would have favored them if Perot had somehow disappeared? All the evidence suggests it would have been a wash.

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I just don't understand why Gore would write off his home state.  If he would have campaigned there just a little bit.
I seem to recall that he did.

He would've been defeated in 2004 anyway by McCain, so he would've only served one term.
Possibly... probably not though. If Bush could get reelected thanks to 9-11, anyone could.

And he really wasn't a native of the state in any meaningful way.  He grew up in D.C. and spent only his summers in the state.  When he became a Congressman and then a Senator, he basically only spent campaign season there.  He didn't speak like them.  He didn't act like them.  He wasn't one of them.
Check 2004's biggest swings if you believe Gore didn't get a sizeable home state advantage bump. Unlike John Kerry, by the way. "Gore's not really from Tennessee" was, of course, a major Republican campaign theme/media talking point during 2000. It probably influenced some people... but not nearly enough to swing the state.

Gore was perceived as too liberal.
Bingo. In a nationally close someone-like-Gore vs someone-like-Bush election, Tennessee as it stands now (with far more suburbs than 30 years ago, that is) is safe for the Bush guy.
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« Reply #7 on: June 09, 2008, 09:24:32 am »
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He didn't speak like them.  He didn't act like them.  He wasn't one of them.

He speaks, acts and is like some of us.

He was too liberal in a state that has been growing more conservative. The entire South has been trnding GOP as other parts of the country have been trending Dem.
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« Reply #8 on: June 09, 2008, 10:00:01 am »
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He would've been defeated in 2004 anyway by McCain, so he would've only served one term.

That was certainly an excellent answer to the question.
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« Reply #9 on: June 09, 2008, 10:02:25 am »
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The conventional wisdom is that Perot took votes from Bush in the South, and from Clinton in the North.
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« Reply #10 on: June 09, 2008, 12:08:27 pm »
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The conventional wisdom is that Perot took votes from Bush in the South, and from Clinton in the North.

I am wondering what would have happened without Perot on the ballot in 1992.  I think Clinton would have likely lost Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, and Tennessee in the South, Ohio and Wisconsin in the midwest, and Nevada, Colorado, and Montana in the West.  I think he also would have lost New Jersey.  This would have given Bush a 269-267 EV victory.
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« Reply #11 on: June 09, 2008, 12:40:56 pm »
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Your statement assumes that Perot pulled votes net in the North from Bush. That is not the conventional wisdom. I am sure that if you did a google on this, something would pop up regarding this north versus south distinction.
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« Reply #12 on: June 09, 2008, 02:20:23 pm »
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From DC Not Tennessee!!!!!!!
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« Reply #13 on: June 09, 2008, 05:05:56 pm »
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I think it's worth pointing out that Gore's opponent in 2000 was a southerner. An artificial one at that, but still percieved as a southerner.

I am wondering what would have happened without Perot on the ballot in 1992.  I think Clinton would have likely lost Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, and Tennessee in the South, Ohio and Wisconsin in the midwest, and Nevada, Colorado, and Montana in the West.  I think he also would have lost New Jersey.  This would have given Bush a 269-267 EV victory.

That sure is a lot of speculation that all of those states would have gone in the Bush column. 269 electoral votes is still not a victory in a presidential election, either. 270 is needed to win.

I still can't quite figure out why people have this mythical belief that Perot cost Bush the election in 1992. I remember it well since it was the first election I voted in. I also remember doing a paper in College about how Perot's presence cut into Clinton's lead at the time. Clinton won by about 5 and a half points in 1992. It would take an unreasonable split of about 65-35 of Perot's votes in Bush's favor just to even things out nationally, and I don't even want to speculate what if scenarios in each individual state to get a different result.

Anywho, there's a whole lot of proof in the facts. The telltale one to me that involves no speculation is that in 1992 when Perot was more of a factor, Clinton won the popular vote by 5.5% as I covered earlier. When he(Perot) had less influence in 1996, Clinton won by a much wider margin(almost 9% nationally.)
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« Reply #14 on: June 09, 2008, 05:09:08 pm »
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Didn't you hear?  Democrats were paying homeless drunks to vote for them in Florida.  And Republicans in Arkansas and Tennessee were holding gun raffles for people who agreed to vote for Bush...

Seriously -- Gore lost Tennessee because, as someone has already said, he was perceived as too liberal.  Combine that with Clinton fatigue and The Decider's ability to come off like one of the Dukes of Hazard..."Just a good 'ol boy, never meanin' no harm..." and you have a pretty understandable win for Beelzebush throughout the south.
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« Reply #15 on: June 09, 2008, 05:12:53 pm »
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Gore took the state for granted.  If he had campaigned more there, and maybe used Bill more as well, he could have pulled out a victory.  Same goes for New Hampshire and Florida.
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« Reply #16 on: June 09, 2008, 06:15:25 pm »
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From DC Not Tennessee!!!!!!!
Huh?  He was a Tennessee senator from 1985 to 1993.
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« Reply #17 on: June 09, 2008, 08:19:32 pm »
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Some people wish to claim that the Gore family spent so much of their time representing TN in DC that they are not Tennesseans. Gore went to school some in DC while his father worked there- representing Tennessee. After Vietnam, Gore worked for a Nashville paper covering politics and uncovering corruption. He attended Vanderbilt Divinity School in Nashville, he represented TN from 1977 to 1993, had a home here, and came home to campaign every year. The notion that he lived somewhere else is just as true for any other Washington DC Representative- you've got to go where the work is.

Tennessee became more conservative and more Republican. When he became VP, he- thankfully- abandoned some of his more conservative positions.
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« Reply #18 on: June 09, 2008, 09:13:16 pm »
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From DC Not Tennessee!!!!!!!
Huh?  He was a Tennessee senator from 1985 to 1993.

my quote was a sort-of slogan from some Southerners resentful of Gore during the 2000 election time period.  it was not meant to be taken literally.
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« Reply #19 on: June 10, 2008, 01:17:38 am »
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And he really wasn't a native of the state in any meaningful way.  He grew up in D.C. and spent only his summers in the state.  When he became a Congressman and then a Senator, he basically only spent campaign season there.  He didn't speak like them.  He didn't act like them.  He wasn't one of them.

Many people called this to happen early in the process, and yet no one in the media really believed it until election night.

In all fairness, John McCain's ties to Arizona are no stronger, perhaps even less so. But yes, I agree that by 2000 Gore had lost touch with Tennessee. He won every county in the state in 1990 in his Senate reelection bid, so the aforementioned problems you mention clearly weren't issues until after he left the state.
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« Reply #20 on: June 10, 2008, 05:00:38 am »
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Because Gore '00 had none of the same positions as Gore '88.
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« Reply #21 on: June 10, 2008, 06:06:11 am »
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From The Almanac of American Politics 2006:

'This movement was still strong enough for the Clinton-Gore ticket to carry Tennessee 47%-42% in 1992.  But the narrowness of the margin was a warning of what was ahead.  In 1994 Tennessee turned against the Clinton administration and produced a kind of political revolution.  Republican Fred Thompson, famous as a Watergate investigator and movie actor, won the remainder of Gore's Senate term by a landslide, surgeon Bill Frist beat (Jim) Sasser, and Republican Don Sundquist was elected Governor.  Republicans won a majority of the vote for the U.S. House, gaining two seats and coming close in a third.  The Republican trend was strong enough in 1996 that only after extraordinary efforts - Gore made 16 appearances here and the campaign pumped money in for late ads - was the Clinton-Gore ticket able to win by a narrow 48%-46% margin.
    In 2000 the tide was even stronger.  George W. Bush targeted the state early and worked it energetically; the Gore campaign, though headquartered in Nashville, seemed to assume it would come round in the end, and only campaigned hard here in the last few days.  Bush carried the state 51%-47%...In his gracious concession speech, Gore noted that he had some fence-mending to do in Tennessee, but the problem was not that he was personally unpopular; the problem was that the issue positions and cultural tone of the Clinton-Gore administration was alien and grating in rural Tennessee and in the suburban subdivisions expanding from Nashville and other cities out into the countryside...In 2004 Bush carried Tennessee by a solid 57%-43% (technically 56%-42%) margin and Republicans won the popular vote for the House and, for the first time since Reconstruction, elected a majority of state senators.'
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« Reply #22 on: June 10, 2008, 07:48:47 am »
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I love the "Gore was perceived as a liberal" comments.  Sure, he twists in the wind as much as any politico seeking more power, but the guy certainly leans pretty far to the left for an American mainstream politician.
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« Reply #23 on: June 10, 2008, 09:14:59 am »
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The conventional wisdom is that Perot took votes from Bush in the South, and from Clinton in the North.

I am wondering what would have happened without Perot on the ballot in 1992.  I think Clinton would have likely lost Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, and Tennessee in the South, Ohio and Wisconsin in the midwest, and Nevada, Colorado, and Montana in the West.  I think he also would have lost New Jersey.  This would have given Bush a 269-267 EV victory.

In looking at 1992, I'm convinced that Perot did not change the outcome.  I would have been closer, Bush would had more EV's, but below 270.

That said, TN would have been a tossup in 1992.  By 2000, Gore had moved substantially to the left of where he was 1992.
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« Reply #24 on: June 10, 2008, 06:43:11 pm »
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In looking at 1992, I'm convinced that Perot did not change the outcome.  I would have been closer, Bush would had more EV's, but below 270.

That said, TN would have been a tossup in 1992.  By 2000, Gore had moved substantially to the left of where he was 1992.

I'll at least agree that someone(namely a Republican) has accepted that Perot would not have changed the outcome of that election and leave it at that.
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