This was the scene last November as Nevadans were finally tiring of the "tea party" appeasing antics of Dean Heller and Joe Heck. For the past 18 months, both have been busy nurturing their relationship with the "TEA" tinged ones while occasionally smearing Vaseline on the camera to obscure what this means for Nevada's working families. Many have wondered how they can be defeated.
Today, we (again) have the answer in plain sight. Just don't listen to certain national media pundits telling you to ignore it.
This was the scene in the middle of last month at the Nevada State Democratic Party (NSDP) NV-03 field office in Henderson. Ever since the office opened in June, the party's coordinated campaign (helping Shelley Berkley in the US Senate race, John Oceguera in the US House race, President Obama, and Democratic Legislature candidates) has been working the field at a furious pace. Add to that all the field work Obama's own campaign has been doing since last fall, and we have a recipe for Democratic success in Nevada this fall.
This was the scene the day after our "field day" at the NSDP office. Oh yes, that's right. We need to reexamine the infamous "Tea Party, Inc." Bus Wreck. Remember that the Koch funded AFP "charitable foundation" is supposed to be part of the "Shadow GOP" that's supposed to help Joe Heck, Dean Heller, and Mitt Romney win by sidestepping the "Real Nevada Republican Party" that's now run by Ron Paul acolytes. So really, there's no comparison between Nevada Democrats' "well oiled machine" and Nevada Republicans' greasy chaos.
This was the big news yesterday. After three months of constantly chipping away at Republicans' already meager voter registration advantage, it finally came tumbling down this week as Democrats' regained the edge in the newly configured suburban Las Vegas/Henderson seat. For all the talk of how "strong" Joe Heck appeared and how "well" Mitt Romney seemed to be doing in the constantly swingy Clark County suburbs, Republicans just couldn't hold onto that tiny advantage they had (briefly "gained" thanks to so many Nevada voters being declared "inactive" by the Clark County Election Department early this year). And since NV-03 also happens to be the key region where statewide elections are won or lost, this is big news for President Obama and Shelley Berkley as well.
When thinking of how to win a campaign, I always think of these two words: Field matters. It can very well make the difference between winning and losing. And while it can't always make up for deficiencies in other areas, it can do what many millions of dollars worth of glitzy TV ads can't do in cultivating supporters and turning them out come election time.
So why do we keep hearing from the national media about how "confident" Nevada Republicans are? Basically, one thing that the G-O-TEA consultants are good at is spinning the media. That's why they're able to show their clients looking so "confident". But when we look beneath the surface, we see a completely different picture.
So remember this next time the political "armchair quarterbacks" on the cable networks and DC gossip rags talk about who's supposedly winning the fight for Congress and The White House. As we're seeing in Nevada, what matters more is what's happening on the field and away from the spin room.