Matthew Dowd

Matthew Dowd, chief strategist for the Bush campaign, was the guest at a Monitor lunch on Thursday. Here are excerpts from his remarks:

On the Bush campaign's plans for the final days of the campaign:

"Two thirds of our stops will be in Gore states...."

On whose get out the vote operation is better:

"The question we have is whether our [get out the vote] operation is equal to their operation. And I don't think we will know the answer to that until Election Day. It is much, much, much more extensive than it was in 2000 ...So we are hoping we are at parity with the Democrats on this."

On why he does not believe the rule of thumb that says undecided voters tend to end up casting their ballots for the challenger:

"We are also in an entirely different information flow situation this year... This is the first incumbent re-election where [the Internet] really has been in place....24-hour cable shows affecting peoples' access to information wasn't around [before]...The worst case is that we split the undecideds."

On impact of an election loss on democrats:

"The real question after election where do the Democrats go. Their entire organizing principle for four years hasn't been pro-anything ...It has been all anti-the president...There is going to be a huge vacuum when they no longer have the president to organize around in relation to elections."

On the growing importance of cable networks:

"One of the most interesting things that has come out of this election is, how much viewership has moved to cable and away from the nets...We bought cable this year. We didn't buy any cable in 2000. And we didn't just buy Fox or ESPN, we bought CNN, we bought NBC, we bought the Learning Channel, we bought the History Channel."

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