Monday, August 6, 2012

Obama's Ace in the Hole

In case you haven't yet heard, Nevada Democrats made big gains again in voter registration last month. Democrats now have a 41.13% to 36.70% advantage over Republicans statewide. And not only have Democrats gained statewide, but in key swing areas as well. Republicans' registration advantage in NV-03 has almost entirely vanished, and Democrats' registration advantage in the new NV-04 district is back over 10%.

So how are Nevada Democrats doing this? Take a look below.

OFA Nevada and the Nevada State Democratic Party have been doing voter registration since the spring. Last Friday, I wanted to see what was happening for myself, so I went to the epicenter of all the local voter registration action: the Henderson DMV.

As people were streaming in and out, 5 Democrats (2 OFA, 3 NVDems) were outside, holding clipboards, and registering anyone who wanted to. Meanwhile, there were 3 Republicans (From the real Nevada G-O-TEA? Or "The Shadow Party?) conducting a "survey"... And using that to determine who to register to vote. Basically, people who sounded anti-Obama were chased into the parking lot while people who sounded pro-Obama were tossed aside.

While the Democrats kept asking everyone and stood ready & available for anyone who needed to register or change address, DMV customers were complaining to DMV staff about the Republicans' behavior. Pretty soon, security guards were asking the Republicans to stop the annoying "survey" and stop chasing people into the parking lot. And in case there wasn't enough drama there, the Republicans' supervisor soon arrived in a full suit and proceeded to tell his staff NOT to pay attention to what the security guards are saying!

And while all that drama was unfolding, the folks from the Nevada State Democratic Party continued with voter registration. Now, everyone is just hoping that the G-O-TEA's bad behavior won't force everyone out of the DMV for good.

But wait, there's more! On a lighter note, OFA also celebrated President Obama's birthday on Saturday. In addition to doing that round of voter registration on Friday, local volunteer leader Linda hosted a birthday party for Mr. President the following evening! Here's a glimpse of what happened.

While everyone was having fun there, some important work was also being done. Volunteers were being recruited for future voter registration shifts and phone banks. Local OFA organizer Alison was explaining to the group why they will soon need volunteers to canvass the neighborhood. And Linda reminded them why they were all there.

And in case that wasn't enough, Nevada State Democratic Party Chair Roberta Lange and NV-03 Democratic nominee John Oceguera stopped by to remind everyone that there's even more at stake this fall. President Obama will surely need more allies in Congress next year, so electing Oceguera & Shelley Berkley (who's running for US Senate) will be just as critical as Obama's own final score in Nevada. Really, the entire balance of power in Washington may ultimately be determined by my neighborhood 8 miles southeast of the Las Vegas Strip.

This is why Nevada Democrats have been working the field so hard. They're now starting to reap the rewards. And if they keep at this pace, Nevada may end up Bluer than ever before... And Mitt Romney will really be screwed here, and Dean Heller & Joe Heck will be dragged down with Romney.

And ultimately, all of this may be determined by how many more Democrats are registered to vote at the Henderson DMV, as well as how many doors are knocked & how many phone calls are made in the next month. Yep, Nevada Democrats' field operation may prove to be President Obama's "Ace in the Hole" here.

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