We have been following the various left-wing movers and shakers who have who have joined Power Line readers mischievously pulling for Minnesota Fifth District Rep. Keith Ellison to emerge victorious in his bid to chair the Democratic National Committee, most recently yesterday in “Dems in 5 states are with you.”
Ellison hasn’t won a competitive election since the multicandidate Democratic primary which he won with 41 percent of the vote in September 2006. After winning the primary Ellison went on to win the election against GOP candidate Alan Fine in November 2006. He has won his subsequent campaigns for reelection against other GOP candidates. But Minnesota’s Fifth District is one of the most Democratic in the country and the Star Tribune is its dominant media voice. Star Tribune political reporters have served us Ellison’s cheerleaders and protectors. Ellison’s electoral success is not exactly the product of political genius.
Ellison can hold his seat in the House for as long as he wants, but he is bored. As I deduced from his memoir cum manifesto My Country, ‘Tis of Thee in 2014, life as a representative in the House minority doesn’t suit Ellison. He obviously senses the opportunity to take his radicalism to a mainstream left-wing audience.
In his bid for the chairmanship, Ellison has sold himself as a genius of turnout. He proclaims his success in turning out voters in his one-party district. Like so many of his claims about himself, this one has remained unexamined by the mainstream media and appears to be somewhere south of true.
Now at the site Medium comes Xenocrypt to take a look. Xenocrypt finds Ellison’s turnout numbers to be — how to put it? — “questionable.” If you’ve been following the DNC race so far, this is almost funny:
Unfortunately, while I have no personal opinion about whether he’d be a good DNC chair or not, most of Ellison’s numbers are misleading. He makes comparisons across years with different boundaries, uses absolute totals instead of percentages, and doesn’t mention how his own initial vote total was depressed by a third-party candidate. When more conventional metrics are used, there’s little evidence of increasing turnout in Ellison’s districts, and in fact turnout may be decreasing.
I highly recommend the whole thing here.
Via Patrick Coolican/Morning Hot Dish (the Star Tribune email newsletter).