If they did one simple thing: Show up. Right now, they don’t. But that maybe changing. Sarah Griggs Amico have made several trips to South Georgia since the end of the primary, so have candidate for Attorney General Charlie Bailey, Agriculture Commissioner candidate Fred Swann among others. Stacey Abrams have made a few ventures outside Georgia, but one have to wonder can she...or will she commit to courting rural Georgia voters.
Rural voters notice the exclusion. Republicans by contrast structure their messaging around popular rural themes like Guns, The Flag, Religion, etc. They show up at county fairs and festivals, and voters respond . . . The reason they dominate elections is that they’re highly visible and constantly communicate that ‘we’re on your side and the Democrats are not.’ They win the argument by default because Democrats aren’t around to offer a rebuttal.
Word to Democratic candidates....You don’t have to become a Republican in order to have rural appeal. It’s only important that you show, that you care about local concerns, and that you are working for solutions. There’s nothing very complicated about connecting with rural voters. Success starts with simply showing up and demonstrating a genuine desire to learn. But the twice-in-an-election-cycle, 90-minute parachute drop to tour a factory, visit a farm, or hold a press conference will be seen as the political ploy that it is.
When the Democratic ticket bails out on, say the Plains Peanut Festival in Plains, Ga the candidates will have a little time in the air on their way to Tifton.
Yes, rural areas are culturally conservative. The voters who are most concerned with those cultural issues ought to be voting for Republicans. Those aren’t votes Democrats will ever win. However, Democrats do a lot of things to hurt themselves in rural Georgia and don’t even realize it.
For instance: How about actually paying attention to rural Georgia? The impression that many rural voters have is that Democrats have morphed into an urban-suburban party that simply doesn’t care about them anymore. You don’t seem to talk about the things that matter most here.
But....candidates like Lt. Governor candidate Sarah Griggs Amico, Attorney General candidate Charlie Bailey, Candidate for Secretary of State John Barrow, as well as Janice Laws who is running for State Insurance Commissioner have made numerous visits to rural Georgia since the end of the primary.
There is little risk in Democrats reaching for rural votes, especially in a gubernatorial year. Even if you get three out of 10 voters, ... that can make for a huge shift if the margins are so small on a state level
But at the end of the day it’s still God, guns and gays. Those issues are the old standby for Republicans to divide voters, to cut them out from where their interests might be better served.