tv Inside Story Al Jazeera November 7, 2013 11:30am-12:01pm EST
opened. >> a squeak center purple virginia, and in the deep state of new jersey, a republican route. a look at what election 2013 tells us about the future. tonight on inside story. >> hello, i'm frank se sno. the ing goes all is politics, but the national implications are to be found in the political tea leaves. in virginia, a brass knuckle campaign brought terry mcauliffe
to the governor's mansion, and in new jersey, republican governor chris christie raised his national profile with a landslide victory. did he surprisingly well with women, independents, moderates and minority voters. and in colorado voters rejected a major tax increase for schools but voted for a tax to regulate it's new marijuana market. tonight on inside story we're going to search the results for clues to where the country is headed politically. first this background. >> in virginia it was a photo finish in the race for governor. businessman and former democratic national committee chairman terry mcauliffe eked out a victory against attorney general ken cuccinelli winning by a mere two and a half percentage points. the federal shut down may have had an impact. after the 16-day stretch polls showed
cuccinelli along with tea party support across the country. in his victory speech mcauliffe pointed to washington as a dysfunctional government poster child that virginia should avoid. >> the truth is this election was never a choice between democrats and republicans. it was a choice about whether virginia would continue the mainstream bipartisan tradition that has served us so well over the last decade, and a time when washington was often broken just think about what virginia has been able to accomplish when we work together. >> but virginia is polarized, too, and cuccinelli's concession speech was not much of a concession and it said that tea party politics was alive and well. >> we said this race was a referendum on obamacare and although i lost tonight you sent a message to the president of
the united states that you believe that virginia understands that obamacare is a failure, and that you want to be in charge of your healthcare and not the government. at last count i was aware of despite being outspend by an unprecedented $15 million this race came down to the wire because of obamacare. >> reporter: in near high profile governor's race new jersey's chris christie cruised to a huge re-election victory. the popular governor took a very different approach from cuccinelli marketing himself as bipartisan and maybe as a guy who has higher aspirations. >> now listen, i know if we can do in this trenton, new jersey, maybe the folks in washington, d.c. should tune in their t.v.'s right now to see how it's done.
>> reporter: christie won by a lopsided 60- 3% margin in a traditionally democratic state. breathtaking dimensions of christie's win. 57% women. 51% hispanic, 21% african-americans. christie put together an impressive politico application, 66% independents, 31% liberals, and 61% of those who identified themselves as moderate. on the other side of the country colorado hosted a different kind of election, ballot referendum losing by a huge margin was amendment 66 a proposed tax increase of close to $1 billion to change school funding. after the amendment's rejection, governor john higgin looper released a statement expressing disappoint.
al jazeera has more from denver the democratic governor of colorado spent a lot of personal capital on this and it was resoundingly defeated, and raises questions about his re-election effort next year. >> reporter: but the other tax question, proposition aa, a 25% tax on recreational marijuana won by a huge margin, 65-35%. the taxes are expected to bring in $70 million a year. although the dust has barely settled these results will be scrutinized for trends, personalities and for politics to watch. the question now how will they change politics in the near term and the 2014 congressional elections already taking place. joining us to discuss the election results in virginia, new jersey, colorado, and beyond in las vegas, laid moore, senior analysts and professor of political science at the
university of nevada las vegas, and mark fisher with me in studio, senior editor of the "washington post." i want to start here with the "washington post" and in studio because virginia is across the river. that's where we'll start the conversation. virginia as bell weather, what do you see what happened there and what terry mcauliffe accomplished. >> as bell weather for how virginia is going, and is there a lesson there for 2016 and the united states at large--hmm--maybe. this shows that democrats can win in the off-year election when there are fewer people. >> i want to spend just a minute on virginia and mcauliffe. let's talk about policy for just a second. many saw him as a carpet bagger. he has never helds office before. he's a creature of northern
virginia and he hasn't done anything, say the critics. he is in a very polarized state himself. >> it's going to be a tough road for him because he still goes up against the republican dominated legislature. he won by presenting himself as the bipartisan moderate guy which is not really what he is. no one in the history of terry mcauliffe has ever accused him of bipartisanship. >> what are the issues he wants to attack? >> he wants to find money to expand education, and take care some of the major traffic issues in the washington area and roads, and he wants to do something about job creation. but he's up against that. >> the take away from this is that the democratic party can put up, maybe not almost anybody but certainly somebody like
terry mcauliffe who even to a lot of democrats is anodous guy, comes out of the money politics of washington that they can win with candidates like that and republicans put up extreme tea party people who are unelectable even in southern states like virginia. i mean, that's the most amazing thing to me. even in virginia, which is still kind of a republican-leaning state, terry mcauliffe who is not really even from virginia can win because of the republicans couldn't help themselves but put up through that primary process such an extreme candidate. >> david, i have to jump in here for a second because ken cuccinelli, a very conservative republican, did very well. this was not a break out for terry mcauliffe by any means. >> i do not deny that he came close, but what i'm say something this, this should have
been a fairly straightforward easy victory for the republican party, and arguebly for republican party from five, six, seven years ago. the message out of this is the republicans in an election that really leans towards them or used to lean towards them. they can't even beat a candidate as potentially weak as terry mcauliffe. >> let me pull you in here. if we want to dive into why ken cuccinelli lost we have to look at your results in your polling. the latino vote we know 66-29 toe mcauliffe. the asian vote went to mcauliffe. >> absolutely. what we found, particularly for the latino voters, the immigration issue was the deciding issue for them and you have two candidates with very different opinions on immigration. you have the republican candidate along the anti-immigrant wing of the party
using hostile rhetoric that turned off the latino voters. that's becoming a litmus test for candidate. if they cannot get past the immigration issue they can't get past the issues that might resonate with latino voters. asian voters are being turned off by this as well and there is other data, college-educated whites are turn odd by this. this may be winning issues in the state of virginia six or seven cycles ago, but many peel they're there to solve problems . >> obamacare, ken cuccinelli pounded away at this thing, has to be something real sobering. he seemed to get traction.
this is not a popular piece of legislation. >> not clear. the polling shows that people are split, and many who can't stomach him voted in support of obamacare. obamacare is a wash in virginia, and republicans would love it if the message we just heard was true, that the tea party was damaged by this, not what happened. >> we'll talk about the tea leaves for the tea party right after this break.
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>> welcome book "inside story." our 2013 election results and what it means for the road ahead. we want to return to new jersey and governor chris christie' huge victory. with us david, and david, and mark with us in studio from the "washington post." before we go to new jersey, the tea party, tea leaves for the tea party coming out of virginia, start with that. >> well, the mainstream business oriented republicans would love for the narrative was that the tea party was damaged. they didn't get their man in
, and without support, ken cuccinelli received nothing. he was cut off a month ago, and still he came extremely close to winning this with support from tea party activists, christian conservatives, that's the coalition that the mainstream republicans who want to go back to the old days will have to fight against. >> david sirota. >> i think that's right. the republican party is facing a real electability problem. to win a republican primary, you have to make peace with the tea party. and to make peace with the tea party you have to take positions that will make it harder for you to be elected. that's not a problem for gerrymandered districts for people running in the united states congress. but that is a problem in states like virginia where there is a very competitive election.
>> let' let's go from the squeaker in virginia to new jersey where there was a landslide. there was a statement, break that out for us and what you think that means for chris christie and the election in general. >> the first you didn't have a real quality democratic candidate in there. christie didn't get necessarily a free ride. >> you don't see this as an overwhelming endorsement for chris christie? >> hmm, he brought together a nice coalition but his message was very different from some of the other republicans there. he's focused on governing. he's invested in education. we saw late in the campaign he switched his campaign on instate tuition for answer authorized immigrants and he did quite well among latino voters there. he is a governor who basically
based his reputation on i want to governor. i don't want to be an ideologue. this is a good mention in the state , and it gives him an opportunity to get beyond the polarization and claim action for governoring. >> david sirota, how does a guy like chris christie, with the acceptance speech, we get things done. they should be watching this in washington. how does that play in denver? how does this play across the country? >> chris christie figured out what ronald reagan figured out. he's making sure he's positioning himself for president. the way he has done that is by instate stressing the parts of his record that he finds common ground with democrats on so he can deal with the legislature and democratic voters. but he has quietly, he hasn't stressed them but he has quietly checked the box on those litmus test issues for a republican primary. the public image of chris
christie is someone who has brought together a different kind of coalition, a broader coalition than a typical republican, but he has very, very politically in a wise sense, he has checked those boxes to make sure that he's also saying to republican primary voters nationally, hey, i'm with you on these issues. i'm just not at home stressing them. >> i want to ask you this question. what we see with the christie victory is tremendously successful traction among latinos. david, you can jump in in this in a minute. i'm interested in your thoughts. meanwhile there, is an immigration debate bill waiting to happen. do you think that this result can affect policy at the national level as politicians across the spectrum are reading into the results and maybe into their own future. >> you can see the reaction from this election to last year's. they're saying repeatedly we need to be more inclusive as a party.
we need to be reaching out--they say that all the time. >> here they have a candidate in chris christie who does that. >> does it affect the business of immigration debate here in washington. >> i think it does. you saw just this week in the nondiscrimination act on sexual orientation. the movement by some republicans who a year or two ago would not have been there. they're reacting to election results. >> can i jump in and make a very quick point. look, the immigration issue, you have to remember the politics of the immigration issue is that business is not opposed to immigration reform. business, which is a huge part of republican coalition, actually wants an immigration reform bill. chris christie kills two birds with one stone. he can be decent on immigration and raise money for his gubernatorial and presidential race.
i think the politics will change on immigration not because of an election in new jersey but because the business community is having success with candidates in christie backing them as they take a more moderate position. >> he's absolutely correct on this. what we found is among asian and latino voters, a lot of them have a history of voting republican. it's the immigration issue that turns them off. as you saw in new jersey and virginia, two different takes on immigration issue, and christie did well with the latino voters. ken cuccinelli does not. christie wins. ken cuccinelli does not. what you find in the opinion polling, is that the consensus emerging around the senate plan here. it's going to be very difficult for the republicans to come up with something short of that and try to claim victory. >> we're going to come off the east coast and go out to colorado next after this short
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still us with in las vegas david de moore of latino decisions. and david sirota and mark from the "washington post" here in studio. you're following this closely. big referendum issue to help fund and redefine the way public education is funded. it did not succeed. a, were you surprised, and b, what were the the implications? >> i was not surprised. this was a ballot measure that had a lot of outside money coming in from a very anti-public school foundation, the walton family, michael bloomberg, anti-union, against the teachers union. it pore ported to raise revenue but a lot of that money would be earmarked to go into privately administered charter schools. there were sixes about what the ballot measure was, and it didn't succeed. at the same time before we say
that colorado was tax adverse there was a tax increase on the ballot to raise taxes on newly legalized marijuana. some might say to fund school grow a massive field of weeds and tax it more. >> what does this mean for education in colorado? >> folks who want to better fund education and services, need to do more. returning tax rates back to the clinton era tax rates performed better than this ballot measure which went down in defeat . people are suspicious of schemes taking money out of traditional schools and put them in private schools and charter schools. people who want to fund education better figure that out really quick.
>> this is a debate that goes on in every state of the union. what do you take out of this? >> i think that explanation is a little overly complex. it's are the quite simple. just as americans love to criticize their politicians in washington for wanting to cut taxes and spend more well, that's what americans want. they want those education services. they want all those things that tax dollars will pay for, but they don't want to pay for it. the tax on marijuana is popular because it's someone else who is paying for it. but when it comes out of their own pocket to pay for better schools they're much mor more reluctant to do it. it's two faced where they want the services but they don't want it pay for it. >> does it make it less likely you'll move to colorado. >> with when you look at
at las vegas, there was a school bond that was floated that failed, and on the 2014 ballot we'll have a statewide initiative to tax businesses for education here. it will be another test case of some of those dynamics in nevada. >> let's move from mars and look down at planet earth and look at these elections from a distance. when you look at all of these things, including bill de blasio, a blazing liberal who wins new york, and the first white mayor who wins in detroit. what are the national lessons that you take away as we experienced over the last several hours. >> there are a couple of lessons. first, you're starting to see the demographic trends that people like myself have been looking at a couple of election cycles beginning to kick in.
it gives you a good sign that the demographics are really taking hold here. and of course the second lesson here is that you know, these are isolated events here. so it's hard to project here. but what you see are the candidates make the claim that them interested in governing, and that resonated with voters. >> david sirota? >> that's exactly right. i think that voters are voting for the old harding the administration, what they call a return to normalcy. ken cuccinelli, go back to that, the word sodomy was in the debate. the word transvaginal ultrasound was in the political debate. people were saying, look, i don't want somebody like that who has to deal with that or who is dealing with those kinds of things in office. i just want people who can get stuff done.
>> mark fisher? >> personality still matters in a big way. chris christie wins regardless of party and ide ideology. ken cuccinelli and terry mcauliffe with problems with their personalities. and there is anger out there, people are frustrated, and demographics this is a changing country. some states that we're talking about are changing dramatically, and republicans have not kept up on that. >> raising the curtain on what is going to be an amazing return to business, and that's it for today, you can keep up the debate by logging on to our facebook page. thanks for watching. take care, good night. rhoda.
>> we welcome to al jazeera america, i'm del walters. these are the stories we're following for you. the senate set to take up a law that would outlay discrimination of gays in the workplace. and the first day of trading for twitter, and the stock price already passed $45 a share. ♪ >> we are now less than two hours away from an