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The final staff letter of the Hillary Clinton Presidential Campaign

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Oct 8, 2014

Interesting stuff. It isn't the finger pointing that the other thread implies. What went right, what wrong, what they didn't understand or didn't foresee. It is the first-draft of history. We won't know for sure until the voter files are compiled and available.

Hi All

We know that in the midst of the heartbreak and sadness everyone feels, we’re starting to look
for some answers as to what happened. It will certainly take more time to unpack everything but
we do have some early signals as to what happened and wanted to share this initial thinking with
everyone. Please feel free to share it with your teams.

We believe that we lost this election in the last week. Comey’s letter in the last 11 days of the
election both helped depress our turnout and also drove away some of our critical support among
college-educated white voters—particularly in the suburbs. We also think Comey’s 2nd letter,
which was intended to absolve Sec. Clinton, actually helped to bolster Trump’s turnout.

We knew from the start of this election cycle that our campaign faced a series of structural
challenges with which we needed to contend:

 Global forces that we’re driving deep-seated anger at institutions the world over, and an angry and alienated electorate
at home that was frustrated with our political economic system.
 The inherent desire for change after one party occupies the White House for two-terms.
 The unprecedented task of electing the first woman to the highest office in the land.
 And the challenges of reassembling the coalition that elected President Obama twice

The campaign worked to devise strategies to account for all of these challenges.
 We anticipated a slight drop in African American turnout but were poised to compensate for that with an increase in
turnout and support among Latinos, the AAPI community, and college-educated white voters and even Republicans in the
 We disqualified Donald Trump, making him unfit to be president
o Exit polls show that 63% of voters do not believe Trump has the temperament to be president.
o Exit polls also showed that he was the most unpopular nominee on Election Day of any candidate in
modern history with a net favorability of -22 (38-60).
 We also won the economic debate, addressing the anger and frustration many Americans felt
about wages and good-paying jobs.
o According to exit polls, 52% of voters cited the economy as their biggest concern and they supported
Sec. Clinton by a 10 point margin (52-42)

The early vote data showed Democrats executing on these strategies and poised to
overcome the larger structural challenges.
 Early vote turnout was dramatically up in most battleground states
o FL was up 41%
o CO was up 18%
o MI was up nearly 5%
o OH was even up nearly 4%
 Our data also showed that we had strong support in the early vote and we’re poised to assemble a winning coalition of
women, African-Americans, Latinos, AAPI, and college-educated white voters.
o Exit polls indicate that voters who decided who they were voting more than a week before the
election supported Sec. Clinton by a 49-47 margin.
 But then everything changed in the last week.
o Voters who decided in the last week broke for Trump by a larger margin (42-47). These numbers
were even more exaggerated in the key battleground states.
 There are two major events that happened in the last week:
o Director Comey released his first letter 11 days out from the
election, which likely helped to depress turnout among Hillary’s
supporters. It made Sec. Clinton’s e-mail the focus of the campaign
for half of the remaining 10 days.
o After seeing record early vote numbers, there was a significant drop
in Election Day turnout, particularly among Hillary supporters, and
this was noticeable in both larger cities such as Philadelphia, RaleighDurham,
Milwaukee, and Detroit and the suburbs surrounding these
and other cities.
 Then two days before Election Day, Director Comey released a 2ndletter, which energized Trump supporters.
 There is no question that a week from Election Day, Sec. Clinton was poised for a historic win. In the end, less than
110K votes out of tens of millions cast on Election Day made the difference in this race. It is worth noting that Jill Stein
alone got 130K votes in those three states---and though her votes don't distribute perfectly to cover the margin across the
three states, it is an important reminder of the influence of 3rd party votes.
 In the end, late breaking developments in the race proved one hurdle too many for us to overcome.


Jan 16, 2010

I'm really getting the impression that the DNC will not learn a fucking thing from this.


Jun 2, 2013
Sure, Comey didn't help.

But Christ, if that's all it took to make Donald Trump the President-elect, you had far bigger problems.


Nov 8, 2013
I stopped when I finished the second paragraph. I just can't see throwing the blame entirely to Comey being the proper direction to go after this campaign.


Jul 5, 2016

Come on Hillary. Own up to your mistakes. You neglected the rust belt and it came back to bite you, you didn't inspire the voters and it bite you, and you didn't improve your image whatsoever and that bite you. It'd be one thing if you had just done one of those things but you did all of them.

Ridiculous not to own up to that.


Oct 13, 2006
Let them dig in their heels. It will make it that much easier for the new folks to justify getting rid of them so they're not anywhere near future campaigns.

And stop placing blame solely on Clinton, folks. She had hundreds of people guiding (misleading) her to believe it was a lock.
Sep 15, 2015
ain't a damn thing changing folks, democrat voters are going to learn the hard way. I feel it's going to be like when the extreme right got fed up with republicans


Apr 29, 2012
It's amazing how they "categorize" huge blocks of voters. They almost expect those people to vote a certain way just because of their skin color or cultural/ethnic background. I guess that's just how it works for all elections for all parties - but it comes off as cold.


Jul 6, 2013
We disqualified Donald Trump, making him unfit to be president
Hold on.

What was not often acknowledged in Trump’s heated race against Democrat Hillary Clinton, however, was how her campaign fueled his rise to power.

An email recently released by the whistleblowing organization WikiLeaks shows how the Clinton campaign and Democratic Party bear direct responsibility for propelling the bigoted billionaire to the White House.

In its self-described “pied piper” strategy, the Clinton campaign proposed intentionally cultivating extreme right-wing presidential candidates, hoping to turn them into the new “mainstream of the Republican Party” in order to try to increase Clinton’s chances of winning.

The Clinton campaign and Democratic National Committee called for using far-right candidates “as a cudgel to move the more established candidates further to the right.” Clinton’s camp insisted that Trump and other extremists should be “elevated” to “leaders of the pack” and media outlets should be told to “take them seriously.”



Oct 8, 2014
This sounds correct though, in the sense that there were a number of hurdles, some of the campaign's own making.

Yeah. I thought the letter was pretty even handed and fair assessment. They achieved a lot of their goals, but got blind-sided twice in the last two weeks, and were not up to the task. I'm really shocked how pissy people are about this, as the letter is drastically less whiny and finger-pointing than the article Politico put up earlier.

It's amazing how they "categorize" huge blocks of voters. They almost expect those people to vote a certain way just because of their skin color or cultural/ethnic background. I guess that's just how it works for all elections for all parties - but it comes off as cold.

That's polling and data. There are literally no large campaigns without it. It is literally the only way to do statistical polling.


Mar 31, 2015
This forum's turn on Clinton is absolutely unreal.

Most people here still were rooting for her over Trump, and many bought into the hype, don't get me wrong...

... But as the dust clears and we self-analyze, we see some serious issues that many were calling on her and her staff to address that got blatantly ignored, and instead the immediate deflection to "it was Comey's fault!" first off and "we lost this election in the last week" is dangerously ignorant and tragically unaccountable for their own mistakes.

I still believed she was going to win too, but I raised my eyebrow at her not campaigning in some important states, of putting the cart way before the horse, and so many on her staff just expect voters to roll out the red carpet for her simply because her opponent was Trump. The pride and hubris on display was clearly apparent, to the detriment of taking "the joke" of a Trump presidency seriously.

It was their election to lose, and they lost it.


Jul 6, 2013
This forum's turn on Clinton is absolutely unreal.
The forum has turned, because different people got to speak. You see PoliGAF mostly holed up in their thread and people who were driven out by them returning. What you see is a shift in the people who discuss in OT. The users of NeoGAF weren't as Pro-Hillary as it looked.


Dec 7, 2015
They deserve to lose. I can't imagine what might have happened if they got into power with this attitude. It sounds like a kid bitching about losing a basketball game.

"Bruh if I hate some Gatorade I wouldn't have been tired out there man I'm telling ya!"

They ran a shitty campaign and they lost. Just shows their true colors and I voted for her.


Feb 18, 2015
I get how you can blame the first FBI letter, but don't see how you can blame the 2nd. The 2nd letter was saying that nothing was found.


Jul 25, 2011
This sounds correct though, in the sense that there were a number of hurdles, some of the campaign's own making.

Late-breaking developments don't depress the vote by 6 million.

They continue to blame everything except for their own campaign's failings.


Should probably not trust the 7-11 security cameras quite so much
Nov 1, 2009
This forum's turn on Clinton is absolutely unreal.

She was easily beaten by a gameshow host after letting her "blue wall" collapse into a pile of red sludge. She and her campaign deserve to be excoriated, every rational person on the planet was counting on her to beat Trump.


Jun 10, 2012
This forum's turn on Clinton is absolutely unreal.

People who said mean things about her in the primary were dogpiled as uncaring about BLM.

People who said mean things about her in the general election were dogpiled as false equivalenters or secret Trumpists.

The mods with Hillary avatars were intimidating as well, though that's not really their fault.


He who pursues two rabbits gets two rabbits.
Dec 19, 2006
This forum's turn on Clinton is absolutely unreal.

You're mistaking wide support for deep support.

This level of incompetence, hubris, and ignorance isn't going to go over lightly with how much was at stake.
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