Welcome to The Sweep—a new Dispatch newsletter that will cover the last stretch of Election 2020. For those who are curious, the title comes from this piece in which I argued:
Curling is the perfect analogy for political campaigns. The underlying dynamics of an election cycle (the economy, the popularity of the president, national events driving the news cycle) are like the 44-pound “stone” hurtling toward the (please hold while I google what the, you know, bullseye thing is called) … “house.” Once the stone is moving, this thing is heavy and it’s got momentum that is out of the “skip’s” control. The campaign staff are like the guys with the brooms that are frantically sweeping the ice as this 44-pound rock slides along the ice.
Well, since I wrote that I’ve been credibly informed (by no less than the coach of the gold medal-winning U.S. men’s curling team) that sweepers can actually make quite a sizable difference but that this was nevertheless a “pretty good analogy.”
With that ringing endorsement, I pitched our Dispatch overlords (re: Steve) on a campaign newsletter that will focus on the strategy and mechanics of political campaigns, with some behind the scenes flavor along the way. How do VPs get vetted, what are voter scores (and what’s yours), what does it feel like backstage at a presidential debate?