While everyone else is talking about what lessons the 2012 campaign taught us, here are some things we decidedly did not learn:
— People love it when you talk about rape, especially when you are a man, preferably middle-aged. Talk about it as much as possible. Remember, the female body is a kind of magic, and all the science surrounding it is, at best, a guideline. You know better. Wax lyrical about it. If no one approaches you with a camera or voice recorder, demand to know why not. These are important views you have, and the electorate needs to hear about them, sooner rather than later.
— The face of America is about the same as it has ever been. Young people and minorities voted in large numbers in 2008, but that was a fluke, and now they want to lie down somewhere and take naps and fail to legalize marijuana. They will vanish entirely in 2016.
— Elections are decided by vague, squishy, non-numerical factors, and the louder you are, the more people will trust and respect you afterwards, even if it turns out that your predictions were wildly off the mark. Remember, what matters most is how you feel! Also, “momentum.” And “narrative.”
— Money has no impact on elections.
— At fundraisers, speak candidly, as though no one is listening.
— Voters do not approve of gay marriage. The only conceivable way you will get anywhere with this deathly and dangerous issue is if you have unelected judges (gasp!) do it. But then the populace will rise, hissing, and undo their devious work. This has always happened and will always happen.
— If you yell at numbers enough, they will change.
— If you pray at numbers enough, they will change.
— The winning strategy, when running against a veteran who gave both legs in her country’s service, is to criticize her for bringing up her military record too much.
But we’ll see if any of it sticks.