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Hugh Hewitt - Principal Contributor

Mr. Hewitt is senior member of the editorial board. [go to Hewitt index]

Bush is Looking Good!
Does Kerry understand war?...
[Hugh Hewitt] 10/21/04


I have devoted a lot of space and time at my blog to prompting and collecting the responses from hundreds of bloggers to the questions: Why vote for Bush and what's wrong with Kerry. These bloggers run the gamut from homeschooling moms to busy doctors and lawyers to retired intelligence operatives and professors of every sort. Their contributions to the debate on why George W. Bush ought to be re-elected is superb, and I invite to you to spend time reviewing their submissions and strengthening your own arguments for the closing laps of Campaign 2004.

Of course, the Bush campaign is concentrating on blocking and tackling right now, and the key will be the success of the 96-hour effort. There are some structural advantages running strongly in the president's favor which you should remind any of the weak-kneed in your family or wider circle.

First, 4 million evangelicals stayed home in 2000. That isn't going to happen this year – not with appreciation for the president at a peak in this community, and with concern over both the war on terror and the protection of traditional marriage. This is a huge advantage over the president's position in 2000, and one not easily understood by pollsters using turnout models based on the 2000 election.

Then there's the black, Jewish and Catholic votes.

Blacks turned out at a very high rate of 54 percent in 2000, and voted 91 percent for Gore. Recent polling suggests that the president may have doubled his share of the African American vote.

Jewish Americans account for only 4 percent of the vote overall, but many of those votes are cast in battleground states like Florida, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Michigan. Jews voted for Al Gore over George Bush by a margin of 81 percent to 19 percent in 2000. The president's strong support for Israel and Kerry's back-flip on the fence and on Arafat will help the president improve his performance here.

Then there's the Catholic vote, which makes up slightly more than 25 percent of the electorate. It broke for Gore by about 53 percent to 47 percent in 2000, but this year Kerry's extremism on abortion – favoring taxpayer-funded abortions, refusing to vote to ban partial-birth abortions or to require parental notification – has caused many church leaders to remind their congregations of the centrality of the abortion issue to the church's dogma. Bush should increase his total share of the Catholic vote.

To these structural advantages add the fact that on the conduct of the war on terror, Bush enjoys a huge lead over Kerry – a "last minute decider issue" if there ever was one.

And of course, the 96-hour effort that was tested so successfully in 2002 is fully deployed and already in operation.

Whether or not the pollsters take accurate pictures over the next two weeks, understand that all the dynamics are working in favor of the re-election of George W. Bush. And there is not "DUI bombshell" dirty trick waiting to be dropped this time around, and no early call of Florida for Kerry to help suppress GOP turn-out across the country.

Lots of good signs for Bush, and not much to cheer a Kerry supporter except perhaps replaying "F911" for the hundredth time. CRO

§ Principal Contributor Hugh Hewitt is an author, television commentator and syndicated talk-show host of the Salem Radio Network's Hugh Hewitt Show, heard in over 40 markets around the country. He blogs regularly at and he frequently contributes opinion pieces to the Weekly Standard.

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