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Thursday, April 09, 2015

Update

Some updates in the Taboo Football article, specifically the NFL players by position analysis.

Monday, April 06, 2015

Jon Entine, Taboo, and Black Athletes - Football and the NFL

In my final review of Jon Entine's book, "Taboo: Why Black Athletes Dominate Sports and Why We’re Afraid to Talk About It", let's analyze Jon's analysis and predictions of black athletes in football and the NFL 15 years later.

So far the Boston Marathon and basketball were analyzed. Another widely popular sport which the book Taboo analyzes in depth is football. When Taboo was published in 2000, Blacks made up 13% of the American population and an unusually high 67% of the NFL players. These Black NFL players are primarily of West African descent genetically gifted with fast twitch muscles to give them exceptional speed, explosive power, jumping, and strength.

Look at the profile of NFL players since the 1950s. You will see a significant increase of Black players in the NFL every year. If you also plot out physical characteristics, like height, weight, speed, and strength every year since the 1950s, you will see a significantly increasing trend every year, with most of those physical increases attributed by the increasing number of Black players.

By the late 1990s, Black athletes made up 67% of the NFL. Jon Entine concluded in Taboo, published in 2000, that Black genetic dominance in the NFL and clear trends would cause Black representation in the NFL to further increase over the years, and other races would be phased out.

How did Jon Entine's predictions come about? He was a little closer on the mark with his NFL predictions than his NBA predictions, and his fallacies were reduced a little, but fallacies still abound and his predictions did not come true.

Since Black players made up 67% of the NFL in 1999, that figure has been consistent up to 2014. It may fluctuate 1 or 2 points either direction, but has been consistent overall. While the Black population in America has slightly increased to 14% and increased in absolute numbers, the NFL roster spots have been consistent. If Blacks had a genetic monopoly on the best football players in America, we would certainly see an increase of Black representation in the NFL after 1999.

Another interesting note is that NFL player physical characteristics, such as height, weight, speed, and strength, has maxed out in 1999. Some years have small fluctuations, but overall the 2014 NFL players physically and racially represent the NFL players of 1999.

Analyzing the NFL players by position, you'll see the most diversity in the NFL belonging to quarterbacks, offensive linemen, tight end, punters, and kickers. Non-Black players have played in every position in the NFL. Whites dominate the quarterback position, but almost every race and nationality, such as Hispanics, Asians, Pacific Islanders, Arabs, and Indians, have played in the NFL.

Not only the non-Black races can play in the NFL, but they can also play in the most Black dominated positions and perform just as well with the best Black football players. Here are some of the best non-Black players in the NFL who meet these criteria to prove Jon Entine wrong.
1) Player has minimal or no African heritage (i.e less than one quarter Black/African heritage).
2) Player played in the Black dominated positions of the NFL.
3) Player was a solid starter and performed very well in that position.
4) Player played and excelled in the NFL in 1999 or afterwards, when Black representation and physical traits of all NFL players maxed out.


J.J. Watt (White American)
NFL: Defensive End for Houston Texans, 2011-Present (2015)
Signed 6 year, $100 million contract in 2014 to become highest-paid defensive player in NFL history


Peyton Hillis (White American)
NFL: Running Back, 2008-2014
Best seasons were 2010-2011 for the Cleveland Browns


Dat Nguyen (Vietnamese American)
NFL: Linebacker for Dallas Cowboys, 1999-2005
There are several Asians to play in the NFL, but Dat Nguyen is so far the best.


Greg Camarillo (Half Mexican, Half Hungarian Jewish)
NFL: Wide Receiver, 2006-2012
Best seasons were 2008-2009 for the Miami Dolphins


Jason Sehorn (White American)
NFL: Cornerback for the New York Giants, 1994-2003

Jon Entine's prediction of Black dominance in the cornerback seemed to be closer on the mark. The last non-Black cornerback we saw in the NFL was a White guy named Jason Sehorn. He was a starting cornerback for the New York Giants from 1994 to 2002, and played his final year in the NFL in 2003 as a safety. There haven't been any non-Black cornerbacks in the NFL after Jason Sehorn, and there doesn't seem to be any on the horizon as of 2015. Neverless, Jason Sehorn played as a starting cornerback in 1999 and beyond, at a time when Black percentage of NFL players and average size, speed, and strength of all NFL players reached its peak.

Conclusion: Taboo may have less mistakes in analyzing and predicting the NFL compared to the NBA, but it still has mistakes. Taboo has some parts right, but too many mistakes and fallacies to pass as credible scientific research.

Friday, March 27, 2015

Jon Entine, Taboo, and Black Athletes - Basketball and the NBA

Continuing to analyze Jon Entine's book, "Taboo: Why Black Athletes Dominate Sports and Why We’re Afraid to Talk About It" published in 2000, Jon moves from East Africa, whose natives dominate long distance marathon running with slow twitch muscles, to West Africa. According to Entine, the West Africans are genetically gifted with fast twitch muscles. This allows West Africans, as well as many African Americans who are primarily of West African descent, to dominate in sports that require speed, explosive power, jumping, and strength. This makes West Africans, and so many African Americans, genetically superior in sports like short distance sprinting, basketball, and football. Let's examine the globally popular sport of basketball and the NBA.

Statistics show that while Blacks made up 13% of the American population in the late 1990s (the latest figures available in Taboo), Blacks made up a staggering 80% of the NBA. There was a clear trend of Black dominance in the NBA. If you take stats like the percentage of Black players in the NBA since the 1950s or earlier, then plot each percentage every year on your Excel spreadsheet, you would see a clear trend of increasing Black presence and dominance in the NBA. Take other stats, like minutes of playing time, points scored, rebounds, and you would see the same increasing trends.

Look at the Dream Team of the best NBA players in the 1992 and 1996 Summer Olympics. It was dominated by Black players of West African descent, and even more so in 1996. The 1996 Dream Team was down to just one white guy, John Stockton. Both Dream Teams dominated the best basketball players of the world by about 50 points per game in 1992 and 30 points in 1996.

This staggering trend led Jon Entine to conclude that, due to their genetic fast twitch muscle advantages, the percentage of Black players in the NBA would continue to increase and never decline. Other races and nationalities who are not West African would never be able to effectively compete against the Black NBA players, especially the elite NBA players like the Dream Team.

Then reality struck hard after 2000, when Taboo was published. Jon Entine's analysis and predictions were soon discredited over the years. Here are the major events which proved him wrong.

Black player percentage in NBA declines
From an all time high of 80% of NBA players in the 1990s, that percentage declined after 2000 and did not resume the peak of 80% since then. International players from all around the world brought more diversity to the NBA. The percentage of Black players in the NBA has been in the 75% to 78% range after 2000, and at 76% as of 2013.

International basketball players bring diversity to the NBA
The NBA of the 21st century saw much diversity of basketball players of many races and nationalities. Not only did they bring diversity to the NBA, but they have the genetics to effectively compete and be as great as the best African NBA players. Below are three famous NBA superstars that prove the point.


Yao Ming (China)
NBA: 2002-2011


 Dirk Nowitzki (Germany)
NBA: 1998-Present (2015)


Pau Gasol (Spain)
NBA: 2001-Present (2015)


Here are the names of non-African countries which have produced basketball players who have played in the NBA after 2000, grouped by continent.
Europe: So many countries in Europe
Asia: China, Japan, South Korea
South America: Brazil, Argentina, Venezuela, Uruguay
Central America and Carribean: Mexico, Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, Panama,

2000 Summer Olympics
This is where Taboo first started falling apart. The Dream Team of the best NBA players of West African descent were playing against the international elite, but the international players, skills, teamwork, and coaching improved dramatically. The 2000 Dream Team could not replicate past success, often beating the better teams by less than 20 points rather than around 30 points in past years. The big stunner was when the Lithuania team, a small country in northern Europe, was ahead of the Dream Team in the semi-finals. The Dream Team barely pulled ahead and beat Lithuania by 2 points. Then they beat France in the finals by an unimpressive 10 points to barely win the gold medal.

2004 Summer Olympics
This is where Taboo's theory of Black dominate in international basketball was officially buried. After their disastrous losses, they were no longer named the Dream Team. During the regular games, the US team lost to Puerto Rico (73-92) and Lithuania (90-94) for 3 wins and 2 losses. In the championship rounds, the US team lost to Argentina (81-89) in the semi-finals and went home with the bronze medal.

2008 Summer Olympics
By now Team USA was nicknamed the Redeem Team. The best players of the NBA, primarily of West African descent, trained and practiced hard to redeem themselves from the 2004 Olympics. They won all the regular games and beat Spain in the finals (118-107) to take home the gold medal. Team USA played well, but is was not a domination like in the 1990s.

2012 Summer Olympics
Team USA won the gold medal again, but it was even a closer tournament than 2008. Black player dominance from Team USA did not happen, and it became clear that every race and nationality can compete effectively against Team USA. They beat Spain in the finals (107-100) in a closer game than 2008 to barely win the gold medal.

Another point Jon Entine needs to explain is why Nigeria, a heavily populated country (over 170 million) in West Africa, did so bad in the 2012 Olympics? Nigeria was one of the worst teams, losing 4 out of 5 games in the regular tournament.

Conclusion
Jon Entine needs to write a new book sequel, "Taboo II: Where Jon Entine Went Wrong, and Why He Doesn't Want To Talk About It". Using any of the pictures of the basketball stars above would be a good cover.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Jon Entine, Taboo, and Black Athletes - The Boston Marathon

Jon Entine is a sensationalist journalist and a former member of Steve Sailer's Human BioDiversity (HBD) group way back around the late 1990s to early 2000s. It was his book, "Taboo: Why Black Athletes Dominate Sports and Why We’re Afraid to Talk About It" published in 2000, that gave him some publicity, and his analysis on race, genetics, and sports that got him invited to Sailer's HBD group.

It's been 15 years since Taboo was published. Let's analyze how accurate Entine's analysis and predictions came about. While some of his Sailer-esqe sensationalized pseudo-science and pseudo-journalism have relevant facts, there is always a cloud of doubt, and critical facts refuting their ideas are often omitted.

I'll cover three sports that the book Taboo analyses in depth: The Boston Marathon, Basketball, and Football. First is the Boston Marathon.


Taboo mentions East Africans, such as from Kenya and Ethiopia, are genetically gifted with slow twitch muscles which give them genetic superiority in long distance marathon running. Look at the history of Boston Marathon winners - East Africans from Kenya and Ethiopia have mostly won the first place spot since 1991 for Men's and 1997 for Women's.

Winning the Boston Marathon is an impressive feat. It is a 26.2 mile course and the Men's winners complete the course in a little over two hours. To run a marathon in 2 hours and 11 minutes, you would have to run at a consistent pace of 5 minutes per mile throughout the whole marathon with no breaks.

Jon Entine would like to make it seem East Africans have a astronomically dominant genetic advantage in the marathon, which makes other races genetically incapable of competing or beating East Africans in the marathon. After all, the odds of a Kenyan winning the Men's Boston Marathon from 1991 to 2000 (Taboo was published in 2000) is some astronomical, outrageous figure of many millions times billions to one.

A more realistic analysis into the Boston Marathon shows quite a lot of absurd overexaggerations by Jon Entine. If you look at the Kenyan winners of the Boston Marathon, many of them are repeat winners who have won multiple years. Most of the Kenyan have won first place at least twice, and Robert Kipkoech Cheruiyot from Kenya won five times.

Can other races compete with or even beat East Africans in the marathon? Yes. Just one year after Taboo was published, Lee Bong-Ju from South Korea won the Boston Marathon in 2001. The Men's Kenyan Boston Marathon winners have times from an all time best 2:03:02 to 2:12:40. Here are Boston Marathon winners outside of East Africa since 1980 who have ran the time in the Kenyan winners' time range.

  • 1980 - Bill Rodgers - United States (MA) - 2:12:11
  • 1981 - Toshihiko Seko - Japan - 2:09:26
  • 1982 - Alberto Salazar - United States (MA) - 2:08:52
  • 1983 - Greg Meyer - United States (MI) - 2:09:00
  • 1984 - Geoff Smith - United Kingdom - 2:10:34
  • 1986 - Robert de Castella - Australia - 2:07:51
  • 1987 - Toshihiko Seko - Japan - 2:11:50
  • 1990 - Gelindo Bordin - Italy - 2:08:19
  • 2001 - Lee Bong-Ju - South Korea - 2:09:43

There is a much bigger picture than analyzing just one winner out of thousands of the best marathon runners in the world. Every year thousands of the best marathon runners in the world compete in the Boston Marathon. Let's analyze the top 10 winners of the 2014 Boston Marathon.
  • 1) Meb Keflezighi - United States - 2:08:37
  • 2) Wilson Chebet - Kenya - 2:08:48
  • 3) Franklin Chepkwony - Kenya - 2:08:50
  • 4) Vitaliy Shafar - Ukraine - 2:09:37
  • 5) Markos Geneti - Ethiopia - 2:09:50
  • 6) Joel Kimurer - Kenya - 2:11:03
  • 7) Nicholas Arciniaga - United States - 2:11:47
  • 8) Jeffrey Eggleston - United States - 2:11:57
  • 9) Paul Lonyangata - Kenya - 2:12:34
  • 10) Adil Annani - Morocco - 2:12:43
The first place winner, Meb Keflezighi, is born from East Africa, so I'll count him as an East African like Kenya or Ethopia. In 2014, the top ten winners consisted of 6 East Africans, 3 White European descent (places 4, 7, 8), and one from Morocco which is more Arabic (place 10). They all have respectable times just a few minutes of the first place winner, and demonstrate they can compete against the best Kenyan runners.

The Women's Boston Marathon winners also show a similar story. While East Africans won most of the first place sports since 1997, many of them were repeat winners who won multiple years. White Russian women won the Women's Boston Marathon in 2003 and 2007, and runners all around the world can compete with the East African runners.

Conclusion of Taboo? Well, it was an old book and some parts were right for its time. It got Jon some revenue and publicity. But as a whole package it never passed as credible scientific research; it only survived in isolated pseudo-scientific groups like Sailer's HBD group. Everyone has to make a living, but that book is past and it looks like Jon have moved on to other research areas to make a living.

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Telemarketers alert police 900 miles away to domestic violence incident by Walter Ruck

This is one of many race and crime stories you won't see on Steve Sailer's blog or his kind. Telemarketers for Americare Health and Nutrition in Las Vegas were making routine telemarketing calls. Chamille McElroy called a house in Oregon 900 miles away and heard violent struggling and screams on the phone. Chamille alerted her two Hispanic supervisors, Tina Garcia and Mario Gonzalez. The two Hispanic supervisors worked diligently to make sure the phone was not hung up, then contacted the local Linn County Sheriff's office in Oregon. Police soon arrived at the Oregon home where the vicious domestic violence incident was taking place.


The offender is a hateful, violent, deranged 33 year old white male (kind of reminds you of Steve Sailer's target audience) named Walter Warren John Ruck (shown above). When police entered the home, Walter Ruck let go of the woman, who was crying and grasping for air. After an investigation, deputies learned the woman was physically assaulted and smothered with blankets and pillows during the alleged attack. The victim told officials Ruck threatened her with a rifle, shoving the stock of the gun into her chest.

A group of decent, hard working Hispanics saving an innocent person's life from the evil, criminally prone white male. You won't see this story of justice and heroics on Vdare or American Renaissance.

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Terrorism in France: Charlie Hebdo against Islam

Terrorism has struck in France. On January 7, two armed gunman forcibly entered the Charlie Hebdo office in Paris armed with AK-47s and killed 12 staff members and seriously injured several more. Charlie Hebdo is a satirical newspaper that makes satirical jokes and insults against politicians, pop culture, and religion.

In this terrorist attack, the gunman were Islamic, Said Kouachi (34) and his brother Cherif (32) who were seeking revenge for Charlie Hebdo's insulting cartoons against prophet Muhammad and the Islam religion. Here is a picture of the aftermath of the attack in the Charlie Hebdo headquarters.



You can read the details of the attack and aftermath here or any of the numerous articles on the internet. The terrorists were muslim and the victims were a left-wing satirical news organization, but terrorism, whether the terrorists or the victims, is not limited by political affiliation or religion. Back in 2013, I wrote about how political terrorism continues to get worse as long as political factions play with fire (terrorism, violence) and gasoline (insults, slander, hatred, taunts).

The latest Charlie Hebdo attack only confirms this fact, and we all know this will continue. In America, there are many right-wing media personalities (Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, Sean Hannity, ...) and publications (townhall.com, breitbart.com, ...) that make a hefty living making insulting and slanderous statements and publications against millions of people and groups, including Islam. With the path of violence and terrorism inevitably set, it's not a matter of if, but when, the next murders will take place in America just as it has in Paris.

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Election Trends

What have we learned from the 2014 election, and what to future trends hold? It looks like each Congressional election, political parties are going to win in big waves. Like a pendulum, the Presidential elections will swing to the left, with Democrats making big gains. In midterm elections, the pendulum will swing to the right, with Republicans making big gains. It's a little favored toward the Democrats as long as they win the President seat, swinging 4 ticks to the left during the Presidential elections and swinging 3 ticks to the right during midterm elections.

One reason for the large pendulum swings is because Senators have 6 year terms, so in the next election they will face a turn of fortunes. All those Republican Senators who won in 2014 will face an adverse election in the 2020 Presidential election.

While the Democrats have a small advantage, it won't be enough to get anything done, at least for the next several years. It's Congress who writes and introduces new laws, and even during Presidential elections, the Republicans should hold a House majority or 41 Senate seats to filibuster new laws. Republicans may lose one, but they'll keep at least one obstacle. Then in the next midterm election, the Republicans will regain both obstacles.

What are the issues that is defining the political parties?

Taxes
This is where the Republicans have their strongest hand. A few years ago, there was a populist movement to eliminate the failed Bush tax cuts for the rich that exploded our deficit and lead us into a recession. Now that most of the tax cuts for the rich were eliminated in 2013, there really is no desire to raise taxes. Republicans will use this as their strong hand for many years to come. If Democrats try to raise taxes, the results will be disastrous for them.

Democrats, avoid tax increases at all costs. If you do increase taxes, this will greatly strengthen the Republicans. The best way to seek tax revenue is to find ways to eliminate tax loopholes and controversial tax deductions employed by the rich, as well as putting the pressure on tax cheats and evaders.

Illegal Immigrants
This is a controversial issue and a tossup. Republicans like to bring up this topic to portray them as fighting for American citizens over illegal immigrants, but all too often the GOP comes off as being racist and idiotic, and their real agenda is racism and fear that granting citizenship to illegal immigrants will result in more Democratic voters.

Obama seems to have the right approach to the illegal immigration issue, although the Republicans in Congress won't let any of his ideas pass through. Obama's plan is to allow the illegal immigrants who have worked here for a certain number of years to stay without fear of deportation, and offer a pathway to U.S. citizenship as long as they have no criminal record and pay back taxes. Illegal immigrants who have criminal or terrorist ties are deported. Human traffickers are arrested, sentenced, and deported. Those here by illegal human trafficking tactics, such as the abandoned children from Central America last summer, will be deported.

Minimum Wage
Democrats have the advantage here. In referendum votes across America in 2014, voters overwhelmingly approved of minimum wage hikes. Polls show Americans strongly approve of minimum wage hikes. However, the Republicans still dominated the 2014 elections, despite their opposition to minimum wage hikes. So what to make of this?

While Americans agree the current $7.25 an hour minimum wage is too low, most Americans believe around $10 an hour is more appropriate. Going as high as $15 an hour is too high that will only pass higher prices to the customers, and a very high increase would shock businesses. Also, taxes were a greater issue to the voters in 2014, because near minimum wage workers are in the minority of the American labor pool.

Womens' Rights and Abortion
This is the Democrats' strong hand, but this hand was a disappointment in the 2014 elections. What happened? First of all, there were no Republicans making ignorant, offensive, or dumbass statements like "legitimate rape". Second, most of the Republican candidates of 2014 didn't take a strong right-wing, anti-woman stance. When Democrats tried to air attack ads against Republicans, the Republicans successfully defended themselves against the misogynist charges. When the misogynist charges became a non-issue, voters focused on taxes, jobs, and the economy, which the Republicans had the lead.

Conclusion
For the Democrats, read the section on taxes. This is what hurt you the most in the 2014 elections, and this is what you need to fix for future elections.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

How Republican Thom Tillis won the North Carolina Senate Race

There was a U.S. Senate seat in North Carolina up for election in 2014. Democratic incumbent Kay Hagan was seeking a second term, and Republican candidate Thom Tillis was the challenger. Polls showed Hagan was ahead of Tillis mostly throughout the election, yet in a surprise Thom Tillis beat Kay Hagan in the final election, 48.9% to 47.2%. How did Thom Tillis pull off this victory?


This Republican victory is one of the more controversial ones, using high risk and controversial tactics. The campaign started off normal, with Hagan criticizing Tillis for cutting education spending. Thom Tillis was able to defend his record on education, so this criticism died off. Then in October, treats from ISIS and Ebola flooded the news, and Tillis was ready to take positions on these hot topics. Another fortune came for Tillis when Hagan admitted on October 8 that she had missed a classified hearing for Armed Services Committee about ISIS to attend a campaign fundraiser in New York City.

These October events certainly helped Tillis come closer in the polls, but he was still behind and needed more fortunate luck or some new tactics to pull ahead of Hagan. Political races are like poker games, full of big cash, high risk, and high thrills. When Tillis knew he had a good hand, but Hagan probably had a slightly higher hand (you can't see your opponent's cards, but you can make educated guesses), Tillis decided to make a very risky move by increasing the bets, hopefully to intimidate his opponent. The North Carolina U.S. Senate race of 2014 turned out to be the most costly U.S. Senate race so far in American politics, which broke a new record at $113 million.

Another controversial tactic by Thom Tillis was to suppress the minority voters any way possible, especially Black voters who consistently vote around 90% Democrat. Thom Tillis and the Republicans eliminated early voting in North Carolina, where most early voters are African American and/or Democrats.
All of these problems add up to fewer people voting, and election results skewered towards Republicans, who designed the laws. According to Weiser, in 2010, 200,000 voters cast ballots during the early voting days, which were cut by Tillis’s law. In 2012, 700,000 voted during those days; this number accounted for more than a quarter of all of the votes cast African-Americans that year. Weiser writes, “In 2012, 100,000 North Carolinians, almost one-third of whom were, African-American, voted using same day registration, which was not available this year.”

Thom Tillis won by less than 50,000 votes, and allowing those early voters to vote wold have easily reversed Tillis' fortune in the final election.

This was one of the more controversial victories the Democrats could have won if there were better prepared. For the Democrats, you got to get your voters out during every election, not just the Presidential elections. Also, focus more on the state and local elections. Alot of the election policies are set at the state and local levels. The Republicans know this too well, especially with their successful gerrymandering of House Representative districts in 2010.

Saturday, November 15, 2014

How Republican Barbara Comstock won the northern Virginia House race

Republicans won significant gains in all three areas of the 2014 elections: State Governor, House, and Senate. I'll cover a major victory for each of the three areas. Today let's analyze Barbara Comstock's (shown below) victory for a House of Representatives seat in the 10th district of northern Virginia.


The current House Representative for Virginia's 10th district is Republican Frank Wolf. This is Frank Wolf's 17th and last term as House Representative. When he retires in 2015, he will have served 34 years. This district was a very conservative district, but in the past several years, it has turned into a moderately conservative district. Frank Wolf has dominated the elections for over 30 years, often winning with over 70 percent of the vote. In recent years, northern Virginia has been diversifying and Frank Wolf's winning percentage in elections has often dropped to under 60%, and as low as 57%.

This open seat gave a fresh start for both parties. Republican candidate Barbara Comstock was facing Democrat candidate John Foust. Polls showed early in the campaign that the race was a toss-up or competitive. At best Comstock was only looking to win by a few points. Even if Comstock won the election, if the Democrats can limit her votes to under 54% in this mid-term election favoring Republicans, that would be a good opportunity for the Democrats to take back the seat in the 2016 Presidential elections favoring Democrats.

John Foust started off well by picturing Barbara Comstock as a radical right-wing extremist. He aired ads showing how Comstock wants to severely restrict abortion rights. However, women voters, especially unmarried women, did not come out in great numbers this election, and these anti-woman charges against Comstock gained no merit. Then in August, John Foust made a mistaken statement by saying Comstock never had a "real job". Barbara Comstock successfully turned that statement into critical ads against Foust. Comstock successfully tied that statement as an attack on working women of all types. Foust's ratings dropped in the polls, especially among women, and in the final election, Comstock soundly defeated Foust, 56.5% to 40.4%.

It was the women voters, or the failure for the Democrats to win the women voters, that led to this defeat. It was also a very expensive race, with Comstock raising $3 million and Foust raising $2.1 million. Barbara Comstock had to take out $550,000 in personal loans for this expensive race, and with a House salary of $174,000, it's going to take a while to recover those loans. But it's a victory, and donors and supporters will be more eager to help out, and gives her a tremendous head start in the 2016 elections.

For Democrats, this House seat is still in play for 2016. Comstock didn't win as dominantly as Frank Wolf used to, and if Foust didn't make blunders, the race would be much closer. The district continues to diversify and the voters of 2016 should be more Democratic friendly. But your candidate has to be careful what they say and how they act.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

How Republican Larry Hogan won the Maryland governor race

In one of the biggest surprises of the 2014 elections, Republican Larry Hogan won the governor's race in Maryland. Maryland is a deep blue and Democratic state for so many years. However, Larry Hogan (shown below) defeated his Democratic opponent Anthony Brown by 51.6% to 46.9%. It wasn't even a close race, Larry Hogan won big. So how did he pull this major upset victory and what can the democrats learn from this?


Larry Hogan was facing a very steep uphill from the beginning. Registered Democratic voters outnumber registered Republican voters in Maryland by over 2 to 1, and Hogan was well outspent by Brown. In the end, it came down to these two issues that helped Hogan win, fighting higher taxes and winning women voters.

Current Maryland governor Martin O'Malley is a Democrat for two terms (8 years). He did create much controversy by raising taxes quite a lot and quite a bit. He signed increases for personal income taxes paid by high earners, the corporate income tax, sales tax, gas tax, tobacco tax and alcohol tax. Maryland voters stated in polls that their number one concern was the high taxes in Maryland. Larry Hogan paid attention well and campaigned on pledging no new taxes, and repealing governor O'Malley's tax hikes.

On the other hand, Anthony Brown did not make his position known on taxes. As Lieutenant Governor of Maryland, he worked very closely with Martin O'Malley. Because his stance on taxes were unknown, voters assumed Anthony Brown would keep all of O'Malley's tax hikes and even hike more taxes higher. When polls showed Brown was losing later in the campaign, Brown finally made a "no new taxes" pledge, but it was too late.

The second reason Larry Hogan won was by copying the Democrat's successful formula of winning women voters. Hogan didn't win the majority of the women vote, but he did win enough women votes to significantly close the gender gap, which is a tremendous victory for a Republican in a liberal state.

The Democrats did initially portray Larry Hogan as a misogynist who wants to ban birth control and abortion. It worked early in the campaign, but Hogan's campaign team fought back. Hogan appeared in numerous commercials and videos denying those false misogynist charges, and had his daughter and other women vouching for Hogan as a supporter of women's rights. It worked and Hogan, while he did not win the majority, won just a few points shy of the majority of the women's vote. This is remarkable for a Republican.

Another reason Hogan did well with women voters was the tax issue. Women and men voters in Maryland listed relief from high taxes as their number one priority, and Larry Hogan campaigned on that priority.

For Democrats, watch your stance on taxes. There's only two major political parties out there, so if you raise taxes, the Republicans will be the party of lower taxes. Taxing the rich may made sense several years ago when Bush's failed tax cut policies for the rich destroyed the economy and drove up debts. But now that most of Bush's tax cuts for the rich are gone for good, debts are declining, and the economy is improving, tax hikes are going to be a very negative impact for the candidate and the party your candidate represents.