Why Whitman and Fioriana Lost

Meg Whitman and Carly Fiorina didn't lose because of corporate baggage or resentment over how much they spent on their campaigns but because they were Republicans.

Kevin Drum explains all:

Speaking of California, are you wondering why Meg Whitman and Carly Fiorina lost? Is it because they had corporate baggage? Because people didn’t like the millions of dollars they lavished on their own campaign? Nah. It’s because they were Republicans.

He’s got some numbers to back that up but, really, it’s as simple as that.

While Kevin and I are old enough to remember the days when Republicans routinely won statewide races in the Golden State — indeed, when Republicans were so guaranteed to win California in presidential contests that people spoke of an “Electoral College lock” — those days are long gone.  And, unless the GOP figures out how to start appealing to Hispanic voters, they’re never coming back.

FILED UNDER: Campaign 2010, Quick Takes
James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.

Comments

  1. DC Loser says:

    I’m sure someone will bring up Arnold.

  2. legion says:

    Well, once upon a time the GOP was able to appeal to latinos with their platform of hard, honest work and religious social conservatism. In recent years, they’ve made a conscious choice to write that group off, just as they’ve written off seriously courting the black or LGBT vote.

    The problem is that while those groups don’t have a lot of influence at the national level, they can hold _huge_ sway in state & local elections. And once the national party has gone off the charts to demonize those groups as criminals, terrorists, or deviants, it gets harder and harder for local pols to pull those same votes.

  3. James Joyner says:

    “I’m sure someone will bring up Arnold.”

    I probably should have addressed that. He only got in because of a bizarre recall measure and the fact that he was an internationally renowned celebrity. That’s he’s not exactly a member of the Tea Party wing didn’t hurt.

  4. wr says:

    The thing about Arnold is he never could have won the primary here. The California Republicans insist on nominating crazy rightwingers in a state where a moderate Republican could proabably win fairly easily.

  5. DC Loser says:

    I was living in CA when Prop 187 happened. That was the turning point in the GOP losing the Latino vote, probably forever, in the state.

  6. An Interested Party says:

    “I was living in CA when Prop 187 happened. That was the turning point in the GOP losing the Latino vote, probably forever, in the state.”

    And many Republicans don’t seem to have learned that lesson…it will be interesting to see if the GOP does the same thing on the national level…they can enjoy their victories now, as demographics will turn them into losers eventually…

  7. RWB says:

    Carley lost because people remember the crappy customer service at HP when she ruled. The company culture flows from the top down. She was an affirmative action hire and a lousy executive. Meg Whitman was somehow tied to Carley in peoples minds; they were a pair, I am not sure why, but they were associated in peoples minds. Perhaps it is because they claimed a similar background, although Whitman was probably competent. I think she was just tainted by Carley running, nothing more than that.

  8. anjin-san says:

    > I think she was just tainted by Carley running, nothing more than that.

    I live in CA and saw no evidence of this. Whitman spent a vast amount of money, yet never had a coherent message. People did not dig the flood of negative ads she produced. She was perceived, correctly I think, as an amature trying to buy an office to feed her ego.