1. A wartime president
Voters were drawn to Bush by memories of the 9/11 attacks and a reluctance to change leaders in the midst of war. They won't have that option in 2008, when Bush can't run again. But the craving for continuity helped him this time among swing voters and in areas with new voters.
2. Who was tough enough?
Democrats were damaged by the perception that the party and its nominees are weak on national security. Years of attempts to counter that image, including the nomination of Vietnam vet and Iraq-war supporter Kerry, did not persuade apprehensive voters. The ads by Swift Boat Veterans for Truth attacking Kerry took a toll.
3. Values mattered
Values led some voters to Bush. This bloc was reinforced by ballot initiatives in some states to ban same-sex marriage and restrict abortion, and by the perception that the urban, liberal Kerry might restrict gun-owner rights.
4. 'The move-in people'
Republicans benefited from demographic shifts. These included an influx of 20,000 Hispanics to Osceola County since 2000 and migration of white-collar health and insurance industry workers to Boone County, home of the University of Missouri's flagship campus. In both cases, the newcomers have helped make onetime Democratic strongholds competitive. Schnarre calls them "the move-in people."
5. Nuts and bolts
Republicans out-campaigned Democrats. They built better grass-roots organizations, aggressively courted newcomers and sold their candidate to voters with a smart message. Democrats fell short despite Herculean efforts in Boone and some other counties.
I believe it was Jill Lawrence, co-author here, who brought us all the original red/blue map after the 2000 election. I read her afterwards analysis, and found flaws with it. Here's my list of what made former blue go red. Hillary's already gotten the picture. But it's not discussed in this article.
President Bush came off as "one of the people", John Kerry came off as "above the people". Furthermore, not only did Dems come off as weak on National Policy, they came off as attempting to undermine National Security and Policy.
Dems kept ad-homin-ing President Bush. And from the very party who thinks "name-calling" is akin to "violence". And here they were showing their hypocrisy to the nation.
Dems offered nothing new. Repubs offered lots of new incentives and a futuristic concept of where America needs to grow to.
It helped tremendously that Dem supporters continued to use coarse language. Basically, the overall message was: If you vote for Kerry, you get a country like these Democrat followers and supporters.
No one in their right mind wants that. Nude protestors against Bush? Yep. Just invite them home. F*** Bush signs? Definitely proponents of a strong educational system, elect these people to your school boards.
How about vilifying Viet Nam Vets? Uh, doesn't require a rocket scientist to figure out how many men did return home from this war and are voters.
How about.. FRAUD?
And then of course, there were the Hollywood stars and starlets campaigning against President Bush and for John Kerry (er, something like that...). Who cares? Like, because we watch movies these folks act in, we are going to find them entirely believable in real life? I don't t'ink so.. The Hollywoodites treated the average America as "stupid" in even positing and posturing themselves as "leaders". That because we'd see their movies and enjoy them.. we'd just move like a blob into agreeing with their "political views". Very offensive. This was very offensive.
Yep. The extremely rich Mr. Soros. Mr. Euthanasia, pro-pot, anti-America type rich dude for Democrats. After 30+ years of Dems slamming the "filthy" rich... they didn't think that putting Soros forward as their lead guy wasn't going to backlash on 'em?
Nah. I'm not buying the stuff written about in this article. I think it misses major points in its attempts to come off as "strategeristic". Strategeristic for whom, Republicans? Not on your life.