Memo from Bush-Cheney '04, Inc.

November 3, 2004


President Bush won a historic victory yesterday by defeating John Kerry by more than 3.5 million votes, 58.6 million to 55.1 million (51% to 48%) and winning the Electoral College 286 to 252.  In doing so, President Bush:
• Becomes the first presidential candidate to win more than 50% of the popular vote since 1988.
• Received the most votes by any presidential candidate in history – over 58 million, even breaking President Reagan’s 1984 mark of 54.5 million votes.
• Becomes the first President re-elected while gaining seats in the House and the Senate since 1936, and the first Republican President to be re-elected with House and Senate majorities since 1924.
• Received a higher percentage of the popular vote than any Democratic presidential candidate since 1964.
• Garnered 7 million more popular votes than in 2000 – more than twice the amount that President Clinton increased his vote between 1992 and 1996.
• Increased his percent of the vote from 2000 in 45 out of 50 states, including a 4 percent increase in John Kerry’s home state of Massachusetts.
President Bush ran just as strongly in the key battleground states as he did nationally.  In the 14 most competitive states (AR, CO, FL, IA, MI, MN, MO, NH, NM, NV, OH, PA, WI, and WV), President Bush won 51% of the vote to John Kerry’s 49% -- an improvement of 2 points from his 2000 performance in those states.

Yesterday also revealed that the Republican Party has made historic gains with minority voters and women.  Exit polling revealed that President Bush won 42% of Hispanics (up from 35% in 2000), 11% of African-Americans (up from 9% in 2000), 24% of Jewish voters (up from 19% in 2000), and 47% of women (up from 43% in 2000). In Florida, 55% of Hispanic voters supported President Bush, an increase of 6 points from 2000.

Just as we predicted, undecided and late-deciding voters went to the President Bush by a small margin.  Despite media predictions that Kerry would win up to 90% of late-deciding voters, exit polling reveals that President Bush won voters who decided in the week before the election, 51% to 48%.

Furthermore, as we predicted, yesterday was the first time in modern political history that an equal number of Republicans and Democrats turned out for a presidential election.  The Democrats’ 4-point advantage in 2000 evaporated, with Republicans and Democrats both at 37% of the electorate in 2004.

On a strategic and tactical level, Bush-Cheney '04 and the Republican National Committee helped the President turnout a record number of Republicans and make historic gains among swing groups through an unprecedented volunteer grassroots organization and the most sophisticated advertising and voter contact strategy in campaign history: Some highlights include:
• Combining traditional shoe-leather grassroots outreach with an unprecedented online effort to build a network of millions of volunteers who spread the President’s message and helped turnout the vote on Election Day
• Employing cutting-edge research to efficiently target Republicans and Swing Voters through media buys and voter contact, the first time a presidential campaign utilized such research.
• Advertising heavily on national cable and radio to deliver the President’s message to both influentials and voters who had moved away from traditional broadcast TV, another first for a presidential campaign.
• Building new support among Hispanic and African American voters through local outreach, earned media, and specialty media buys.
• Delivering maps and directions to polling places to our committed supporters and using sophisticated, targeted Internet advertising in the closing days of the campaign to get out the vote.
On a personal note, this should be the last “Dowd” memo because I am GTT (for those unfamiliar, that means “Gone To Texas.”)