Harry and Louise vs. President Bush?

Let’s get some real voters who voted for Bush four years ago on TV explaining why they’re not going to do so this time.

Quick! Someone sign up David and Elizabeth Scattergood to make some 30-second TV spots!

They’re lifelong Republicans, about to vote for a Democratic Presidential candidate for the first time this fall.

“We’re conservative people,” said Mr. Scattergood, 82. “We just don’t like what’s going on in this country.”

“We don’t believe the war in Iraq was justified,” he continued. “And Bush is so anti-environment. He favored vehicles in the national parks that are known to create pollution. He’s done everything for the oil industry. It’s really sad for someone our age to see what’s happening and to think about our grandchildren and what they’re going to be faced with.”

Or how about Pixie Lown, who used to be a Republican State Representative in New Hampshire? “It’s just hard for a moderate person nowadays to be a Republican,” Ms. Lown said.

Update I’m behind the times. MoveOn is trying to air some “convert” ads. But they’re mostly preaching to the choir about Iraq, rather than complaining about the betrayal of conservative values. (This one’s an exception.) And they’re way too mod and multi-culti for the voters who can actually be reached by this sort of pitch, who are mostly older, white, and culturally conservative. I say this as someone who’s had a full beard since 1970: Lose the facial hair, guys. Let’s get the Scattergoods on camera.

MoveOn has a problem common to such groups: what appeals to its donor base isn’t what appeals to swing voters. Does anyone know of a 527 that’s making a hard pitch to the moderate-to-conservative bloc?

Author: Mark Kleiman

Professor of Public Policy at the NYU Marron Institute for Urban Management and editor of the Journal of Drug Policy Analysis. Teaches about the methods of policy analysis about drug abuse control and crime control policy, working out the implications of two principles: that swift and certain sanctions don't have to be severe to be effective, and that well-designed threats usually don't have to be carried out. Books: Drugs and Drug Policy: What Everyone Needs to Know (with Jonathan Caulkins and Angela Hawken) When Brute Force Fails: How to Have Less Crime and Less Punishment (Princeton, 2009; named one of the "books of the year" by The Economist Against Excess: Drug Policy for Results (Basic, 1993) Marijuana: Costs of Abuse, Costs of Control (Greenwood, 1989) UCLA Homepage Curriculum Vitae Contact: Markarkleiman-at-gmail.com