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April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review May 5, 2005 / 26 Nissan, 5765

If you listen to someone in ‘the know’, 2008 is going to be the common-man campaign

By Robert Robb

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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Political consultants, at least a few at the top, have emerged from the backrooms and become public celebrities of sorts.

And certainly at the top of the heap these days is Karl Rove, architect of President Bush's Electoral College victory in 2000, and his victory in both the Electoral College and the popular vote in 2004.

I had a chance to discuss politics with Rove last week when he was in town for a fundraiser for Sen. Jon Kyl's reelection bid in 2006.

The influence of political consultants is generally overestimated. Usually, elections are the result of voters making a decision about the basic direction they want on a few fundamental issues.

But there is an expertise in marketing political ideas and personas, as there is in marketing other things. And Rove has certainly earned his position at the pinnacle by pulling off what was thought to be an improbable feat: A Republican victory in a high-turnout election.

After the 2000 election, Rove was reportedly struck by the fact that Bush ran behind what polls indicated would be the margin in many states, including Arizona.

He fixated on improving voter turnout among Republicans, developing a volunteer-intensive voter contact program, particularly in the closing days of a campaign. The program was tested in the 2002 congressional elections, with good results.

In 2004, Democrats invested more in voter identification and turnout efforts than ever before. They even somehow obtained a copy of Rove's plan, as revealed in Bryon York's new book, The Vast Left Wing Conspiracy (Click HERE to purchase. Sales help fund JWR.). High voter turnout is thought to favor Democrats. And Democrats generally met or exceeded their turnout goals in battleground states. But Rove's program outperformed that of the Democrats, and Bush won the popular vote by a surprising margin.

That makes Rove King of the Hill — at least until the next election. Getting Rove to go beyond spin in discussing contemporary issues is futile, not surprising since he is one of the designers of the spin.

For example, he says that Bush was "appropriately specific" about his two top domestic priorities for a second term — Social Security reform and tax reform — during the campaign.

Perhaps so, if the goal was reelection. But not so, if the goal was a mandate specific enough to get a reluctant Congress to act, as is being amply demonstrated by the current Social Security debate. But on broader political trends, Rove is more effusive.

For example, he does not believe that the country is destined for a period of closely and bitterly divided politics, as many analysts do. Instead, he believes that Republicans are already gaining the upper hand, pointing to the unprecedented gains in Congress for a party holding the presidency in the 2002 off-elections, as well as the gains in the Senate in 2004.

In Rove's view, this is in part because the Democrats have become the party dedicated to the defense of the status quo.

That's an interesting prism through which to view, for example, the Social Security debate. It appears that the President is losing the debate pretty badly, as support for his signature personal retirement accounts slips in opinion polls and in Congress.

But, if Rove is right, the Democrats may be hurting themselves politically in the long run as well, with their all-criticism, no-solutions approach.

After all, when it comes time to choose leadership for the country, voters may prefer those who are pitching solutions, even if they aren't keen on all the particulars, to those who have nothing to offer but an unsustainable status quo.

It's also a useful prism through which to view the debate over filibustering judges. The American people just don't understand why presidential picks for the bench shouldn't get an up-or-down vote.

The conventional wisdom among Republicans is that Hillary Clinton will be the Democratic nominee in 2008. And the conventional wisdom among political handicappers is that you need a star to compete with a star, which has floated the names of Arizona Sen. John McCain and former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani to the top of the Republican list.

Rove won't discuss 2008 presidential aspirants. But he does make an interesting observation about the trend in presidential nominating politics.

He thinks 2008 might depart from what he describes as the 80s and 90s model, in which candidates parlay national standing and status into the nomination. Reagan, Bush I, and Dole were all national political figures when they began their quest for the nomination.

Instead, Rove thinks there might be a reversion back to what he describes as the 60s model, in which candidates earn support by grassroots, retail politicking.

If so, the candidates who will ultimately have the inside track aren't necessarily those on the talk shows, but those making connections with party and conservative cause activists.

In other words, those tending to the same political gardens Rove cultivated to beat the Democrats at the turnout game.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

JWR contributor Robert Robb is a columnist for The Arizona Republic. Comment by clicking here.

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