Did Jerry Brown underperform in 2010?
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  Did Jerry Brown underperform in 2010?
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Author Topic: Did Jerry Brown underperform in 2010?  (Read 610 times)
President Johnson
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« on: March 18, 2023, 02:34:15 PM »

From today's perspective, it almost looks like he did underperform in 2010. He won with 53.8% of the vote, a roughly 13 point margin over Meg Whitman. Newsom's race was even closer and Harris just barely made it. All while Republicans didn't flip a single House seat despite the Tea Party wave and while Arnie was suffering from low approvals.

Shouldn't Brown (and the other statewide Democrats) have won by more?
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Lechasseur
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« Reply #1 on: March 18, 2023, 06:16:43 PM »

It was a Republican wave year, and it was the last time the GOP made a serious effort to win a major statewide office.
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Interlocutor
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« Reply #2 on: March 18, 2023, 08:00:34 PM »
« Edited: March 18, 2023, 08:57:20 PM by Interlocutor »

Even with Brown's underperformance, it's not like Whitman performed much better as a result. Kashkari only lost 0.8% of Whitman's support under the top-two system and Cox only lost 2.8% in Dem wave election.

I also don't think this goes without saying, but the California midterm electorate can look very weird and can produce some weird results. Like last year with Newsom's underperformance & the GOP flipping a house seat at the same time they lost 2 (nearly 3) seats in the state legislature.
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Governor Griff (LAB-SL)
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« Reply #3 on: March 18, 2023, 08:37:36 PM »

A GOP wave year following a two-term GOP Governor stint (yes, Arnold, but still) where CAGOP still had some juice in the tank? I really don't think so. By margin, Brown did better than 3 other statewide candidates (Senate, AG, LTGOV) & did worse than 3 other statewide candidates (SOS, Controller & Treasurer). He did 0.1 point worse than the median of the 8 contests (INS-COMM).

If you want to look at a real underperformance from that cycle, then look no further than the most over-hyped political candidate since Dan Quayle/DayQuil: CA AG 2010 Results
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Ragnaroni
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« Reply #4 on: March 19, 2023, 07:47:45 AM »

It was a Republican wave year, and it was the last time the GOP made a serious effort to win a major statewide office.
BINGO! 2014 was the last real gasp of the CAGOP to keep the show up.
Downballot strength was still present and it was still a possibility to win stuff like the Gov and state house etc.

Some say Arnie tanked our chances there post 2010 with how badly he ran the place (well there's still Newsom but its too late).
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Sir Mohamed 🇺🇸 🇺🇦
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« Reply #5 on: March 19, 2023, 11:18:20 AM »

Not from a 2010 perspective, as others already said. Even by not factoring in national environment that much, the state back then was different from today and less of a blue state. Unlike today, CA GOP actually made serious efforts to contest statewide races and Whitman ran a serious campaign. Also remember that the Top-2 jungle primary was just adopted in 2012 and CA tended to have a relatively high share of 3rd party votes. Newsom's race was slightly closer, but even more 3rd party votes, "just" winning 50-39% over appointed Lt. Gov. Abel Maldonado.

Harris definitely underperformed. She just got 46% of the vote and almost lost.
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Old School Republican
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« Reply #6 on: March 19, 2023, 11:23:59 AM »

Even with Brown's underperformance, it's not like Whitman performed much better as a result. Kashkari only lost 0.8% of Whitman's support under the top-two system and Cox only lost 2.8% in a way worse environment for the GOP.

Also, I don't think it goes without saying, but the California midterm electorate can look very weird. I almost wanna say the 2018 cycle was an outlier in that regard.

The best performance for California Republicans since 1994 also seems to be in 2006 which was a dem wave year nationally so California may very well not have its results correlated to the national environment.
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Landslide Lyndon
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« Reply #7 on: March 19, 2023, 11:30:57 AM »

The people who seek an excuse to dump on Harris some more, obviously don't remember that the AG race started with Cooley as the favorite. Her win was actually a moderate upset.
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President Johnson
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« Reply #8 on: March 19, 2023, 03:09:24 PM »

It was a Republican wave year, and it was the last time the GOP made a serious effort to win a major statewide office.

The second part is an important point, though the Republican wave stopped in California. They didn't flip a single seat in the state, just as in 2014. 2006 was also a wave year and Arnie handily won reelection.
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America Needs a 13-6 Progressive SCOTUS
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« Reply #9 on: March 19, 2023, 03:39:38 PM »

The people who seek an excuse to dump on Harris some more, obviously don't remember that the AG race started with Cooley as the favorite. Her win was actually a moderate upset.
Its worth noting that Harris had horrible numbers in 2014 too.
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kwabbit
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« Reply #10 on: March 19, 2023, 03:43:30 PM »

It was a Republican wave year, and it was the last time the GOP made a serious effort to win a major statewide office.

The second part is an important point, though the Republican wave stopped in California. They didn't flip a single seat in the state, just as in 2014. 2006 was also a wave year and Arnie handily won reelection.

The GOP wave didnít stop in California. CA swung about as much as the nation, itís just that the Democrats had good candidates in Boxer and Brown and the incumbent protection map was durable. The GOP didnít win the two close House races, but both were Lean Democratic prior to the night.
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President Johnson
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« Reply #11 on: March 19, 2023, 04:06:51 PM »

The people who seek an excuse to dump on Harris some more, obviously don't remember that the AG race started with Cooley as the favorite. Her win was actually a moderate upset.
Its worth noting that Harris had horrible numbers in 2014 too.

She won by roughly the same than Newsom as lt. governor, 57.5% to 42.5%. Jerry Brown won a clean 60-40%.
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Landslide Lyndon
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« Reply #12 on: March 19, 2023, 04:16:49 PM »

The people who seek an excuse to dump on Harris some more, obviously don't remember that the AG race started with Cooley as the favorite. Her win was actually a moderate upset.
Its worth noting that Harris had horrible numbers in 2014 too.

She won by roughly the same than Newsom as lt. governor, 57.5% to 42.5%. Jerry Brown won a clean 60-40%.

The Harris hate-boner is impenetrable to reality.
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Devout Centrist
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« Reply #13 on: March 19, 2023, 09:33:44 PM »

Itís worth mentioning that Meg Whitman ran a well funded and relatively competent campaign. She is a billionaire and did not (does not) come from the same strain of radicalism that has tainted the California GOP since 2010.
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Mr. Smith
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« Reply #14 on: March 25, 2023, 02:17:53 PM »

Not at all.  He won Del Norte County, something not done before [quite possibly since Brown 2.0] or since.

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kwabbit
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« Reply #15 on: March 25, 2023, 02:33:30 PM »

Not at all.  He won Del Norte County, something not done before [quite possibly since Brown 2.0] or since.



Brown had good WWC appeal. Whitman did well in suburban SoCal areas, winning OC by 19, SD by 5, and Ventura by 4, but Brown did better than Biden in most of non Bay/Sac NorCal.
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Хahar 🤔
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« Reply #16 on: March 25, 2023, 02:56:59 PM »

If you want to look at a real underperformance from that cycle, then look no further than the most over-hyped political candidate since Dan Quayle/DayQuil: CA AG 2010 Results

I don't think you'll find any pushback to the idea that Kamala Harris is a poor candidate on this forum (although, as mentioned, she did fine in 2014), but it's important to point out that she had a really strong opponent. It's hard to imagine now, because it's been over a decade since the California Republican Party had a genuinely strong candidate for any statewide office and it's unlikely to happen again in the foreseeable future, but Cooley would have put up a very tough challenge for any Democrat. I interpreted the result when it happened as a sign of Cooley's strength.

Not at all.  He won Del Norte County, something not done before [quite possibly since Brown 2.0] or since.

Brown had good WWC appeal. Whitman did well in suburban SoCal areas, winning OC by 19, SD by 5, and Ventura by 4, but Brown did better than Biden in most of non Bay/Sac NorCal.

I think that attributing this to "WWC appeal" misses what was actually going on. Most white working-class voters in California do not live in the remote far north. I had some thoughts about this last month:

Here's something I thought would be useful: gubernatorial swing from 2010 to 2018.



It's striking how different the map from 2010 looks: Orange was one of Whitman's best counties, while Brown came within eight points (738 votes) of carrying Lassen. In the span of just eight years, Orange swung 20 points Democratic while Lassen swung 47 points Republican. That was an anomaly, as Del Norte at 26 points was the only other county in the state to swing more than 20 points toward Republicans, but of course in any case that's a trade that Democrats would gladly make.

It's really striking how strong Jerry Brown was in the historically Democratic counties of the far north (he had carried many of those counties in his 1974 gubernatorial campaign and all of them in his campaign for secretary of state four years prior) and how quickly that all went away. Part of that was that Gavin Newsom was a foreign city politician (he ran well behind Brown in that region in his lieutenant gubernatorial campaigns) and part of it was just the changes in politics in the intervening eight years.
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President Johnson
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« Reply #17 on: March 25, 2023, 03:06:04 PM »

Not at all.  He won Del Norte County, something not done before [quite possibly since Brown 2.0] or since.



I looked it up, Del Northe voted Republican in every gubernatorial election since. Although 2014, 2018 and 2022 were bigger wins for the Democrats statewide than 2010 was.
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Mr. Smith
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« Reply #18 on: March 25, 2023, 03:24:08 PM »

The people who seek an excuse to dump on Harris some more, obviously don't remember that the AG race started with Cooley as the favorite. Her win was actually a moderate upset.

This was my first midterm I paid any attention to so:

Cooley was only the favorite insofar as he could keep the race competitive and Harris was already polarizing. It was still never truly his to win just because of partisan leanings, unless all cards fell into place. They didn't.

No different from Mark Udall vs. Cory Gardner, except that Harris actually campaigned seriously.
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politicallefty
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« Reply #19 on: March 25, 2023, 04:20:10 PM »

I've never understood the Lassen County anomaly that year, and it really is quite an anomaly. I've actually asked that question here before and it really hasn't been answered satisfactorily. By that point, it was already one of the most Republican counties in the state (one of only two counties where Bush broke 70% in 2004 and one of only four where McCain broke 60%). Prior to 1980 it was reliably Democratic, like most counties in the region. If you look at the counties in that region that haven't shown any recent Democratic strength though (so, excluding Butte, Nevada, Del Norte, and Trinity), Brown didn't even crack 40% in any of them in 2010. The swing in Lassen was really something by itself.

Xahar showed the swing from 2010 to 2018, but that doesn't show that Lassen had already snapped back in 2014 (it just lurched that much further to the right in 2018, like most rural areas since Trump came on the scene). I could show the swing map, but I want to show the trend map from 2010 to 2014 instead to really show how much Lassen County stands out:

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