Would Texas turn blue? A lot of people were asking that question in recent months as Democrats poured millions into the state to flip it. Predictions of a blue wave didn’t happen. As they say in the Lone Star state, all the promises turned out to be “all hat and no cattle” It didn’t happen.
How did Republicans keep Texas red? That’s a question Dan McLaughlin explores in a recent article (subscription may be required) in National Review.
The answer isn’t anything magical. Texas Republicans emphasized recruiting a diverse set of good candidates for all offices and encouraging registration of new voters. Republicans also encouraged candidate training
The new voter efforts had a big payoff. The Republican effort yielded about 186,000 new voters, many of which helped keep Republicans in key offices across the state.
As McLaughlin writes:
Republicans held the line statewide and made some significant gains down the ballot. Donald Trump, John Cornyn, railroad commissioner Jim Wright, and the seven Republican judicial candidates on the statewide ballot each got more votes in Texas in 2020 than there were Texans who voted in the entire 1996 election. Joe Biden added 1.33 million votes to Hillary Clinton’s 2016 total, but Trump added 1.18 million to his own. No Republican lost a statewide race, and all 23 Republican-held House seats were retained.
North Carolina Republicans can learn from what happened in Texas. Some of it already seems to have happened here.
The 2016 election showed that a high turnout wouldn’t hurt Republicans in Texas. You can say the same in North Carolina.
According to the Civitas VoteTracker The lead Democrats have in voter registration is shrinking. Since the general election in 2016, Democrats have lost over 106,000 registered voters. Republicans have gained about 151,000. New Unaffiliated registrations however, top 389,000.
A record 75 percent of eligible voters went to the polls during the November general election. Republican successes down ballot and the ability to maintain control of the state House and Senate show Republican fear of a heavy turnout of may be a thing of the past.
How do you keep North Carolina from turning blue? It’s not complicated: encourage voter registration and field good candidates and become expert at knocking on doors, phone calling and using volunteers effectively.
Success doesn’t always require a big secret plan. Outcomes may boil down to how well you do the little things and the things you are supposed to do.