The Winston Group is a strategy and research firm dedicated to making ideas matter.

Health Care Reform: Fasten Your Seatbelts — Congress is at the Wheel

by Lisa Mathias

In Walter Shapiro’s latest post on “Politics Daily,” writing about the politics behind health care reform, David Winston offers insight into what voters are really looking at once congressional elections are underway:

There are actually Democratic insiders who believe that passing health care reform is more politically important going into the congressional elections than even the economy. In contrast, Republican pollster David Winston, who advises the congressional GOP leadership, persuasively argues, “This is ultimately going to be an election about jobs. And there’s going to be one number that people will follow – and that’s the unemployment rate.”

Access the full blogpost

The Vanishing Young Republicans: Thesis by WG’s Kristen Soltis

by Kristen Soltis Anderson

After many months of writing and researching, WG Director of Policy Research Kristen Soltis’ master’s thesis on young voters is now available.   The thesis received “Best Thesis in the Area of Democratic Processes” from Johns Hopkins University this spring and has served as the basis for pieces at The Huffington Post, Pollster.com, and The Next Right as well as radio appearances on BBC Radio and To The Point with Warren Olney.   The thesis takes a look at both the academic literature around voting behavior and partisanship and the practical reasons for the Republican Party’s loss of young voters since 2004.  In the end, Soltis emphasizes the importance of message, tone, and technology when connecting with young voters and affirms the necessity of a modern, vibrant policy agenda to the GOP’s future with young voters.

Download “The Vanishing Young Republicans” (124 pages, pdf)

First Read: What happens if Obama’s numbers improve over the summer?

by canderson

David, quoted in a First Read post on msnbc.com:

But the hypothetical is instructive in this respect: What truly matters here is how things look in 2010-2012, not right now. Still, Republicans see this as an important time, because a more doubtful public could turn to them and their ideas. “Here is the opportunity for Republicans: The public is listening for a debate,” says Republican pollster David Winston.

“First thoughts: Obama and the Pope” – First Read [msnbc.com]

The New York Times’ “Room for Debate” blog: What’s Sarah Palin’s Political Future?

by Lisa Mathias

David provides some insight into what direction Sarah Palin needs to take in terms of her political future, now that she’s resigning from office as Alaska’s governor.

Her task now is to establish her own credibility on a range of voter issues. Her expertise on the crucial issue of energy gives her a good opportunity to join the current political debate. Had she focused on her energy bona fides during last year’s presidential election, she might have had a better shot at quieting critics.

Read the full post here: “Room for Debate”: What’s Sarah Palin’s Political Future?

Where Are The Jobs?

by Kristen Soltis Anderson

Take a look at this POLITICO article about the pressure falling on Democrats as a result of continuing high unemployment rates. David Winston provides some insight into how the unemployment rates are impacting the political environment.

http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0709/24471.html