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Staying on Message and avoiding Gaffs – What 2014 Mid-Term Results mean for Manufactured Housing

November 5th, 2014 Leave a comment Go to comments

Republicans are +7 in the Senate, with plus 8 or 9 possible when LA’s run-off and AL voting are completed. That will be a headline in many parts of the media Wednesday as the 2014 mid-term elections saw the vaunted Democratic ground game that won in 2012 falter in Tuesday’s balloting.  


The above and following graphic credits: CNN

You can tune into ABC, NBC, CBS, Fox, CNN, MSNBC or a plethora of other mainstream media for their takes on the 2014 mid-terms. Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) said, “The projection of who we are had to improve...”


While Senator Paul was speaking about the Republican brand, couldn’t that be a question poised to our MH Industry?   What we will present here is what you won’t find in the mainstream media. We will share some election facts, but then focus on take-aways that ought to be carefully pondered by manufactured housing professionals, associations and supporters.


Congressional House races – CNN.

Facts and More Facts

  • 65% in exit polls said the country was on the wrong track.
  • In America, “We used to control events, now it’s events that control us.” said NJ Governor Chris Christie quoting voters. 


  • 2008 Democratic strategist David Axelrod said it was a mistake when President Obama said that his policies were on the ballot. Even after campaigning Democrats distanced themselves from president and that comment, Mr. Obama doubled down on that statement.
  • In 2010, it was Christine O’Donnell and in 2012, Todd Aiken and Richard Murdoch who turned off voters with over the edge statements. Team Obama managed to paint Mitt Romney as a heartless businessman who killed cancer patients. But in 2014, more cautious Republicans focused on fielding more ‘electable’ candidates and avoided the kinds of political gaffs that plagued Democrats in this election cycle. 
  • Rand Paul said the Clintons didn’t help in KY, IA or even their home state of AR.  Paul said he’d like to send a bill sent to the President that would bring  2 trillion dollars home to the U.S. through tax reform.
  • Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) said Republicans have won a tremendous victory, but now they have a take the second chance by voters to earn their trust. 


  • Voters frankly embraced President Barack Obama’s rhetoric and personality. They wanted a promised “Hope and Change.” But the majority have rejected Obama’s policies, in an election that he himself was a referendum on those policies.
  • The election results won’t make Hillary look so invincible. VP Joe Biden reminded voters that his tactical gaff of saying that Independent Greg Orman would be with Democrats may well have tilted Senator Pat Roberts (R-KS) back in office, when the Roberts campaign turned the vice presidents phrase into a million robo-calls to potential voters going into the election. 


  • ObamaCare/ACA and Dodd-Frank/CFPB were passed without bi-partisan support. Many of the effects of those two mega-bills were tactically delayed until after the 2012. Once health premiums rose, and you couldn’t keep your doctor and health care – as promised dozens of times by the president and his supporters – 25 senators who voted for ObamaCare have been defeated since 2010.
  • David Perdue won outright in GA, in spite of being “Romneyed” by supporters of Michelle Nunn. 


  • The New York Times and Washington Post were correct in their thinking that the Democrats could lose on November 4th. In an upset, Republican Senator-elect from North Carolina, Thom Tillis,said to supporters:The only thing that government can provide you is what it has taken from someone else.”
  • Re-elected governor Rick Scott, said to his supporters in his victory speech, You are here to get the dream of America in the great state of Florida.”NN-governors-races-posted-masthead-mhpronews-com-
  • President Obama had called for a bi-partisan, bi-cameral leadership meeting with him at the White House on Friday.
  • Big wins in governors races, the U.S. House and a clear shift of the Senate into Republican hands. 


  • We measure success by how many people are no longer dependent on the government.” So said Wisconsin governor Scott Walker, who turned in a third statewide victory in 4 years.  
  • In every gubernatorial race that President Obama campaigned, only in PA did the candidate he supported and appeared on behalf of win.  


  • At 7;58 AM ET, CNN reported Republican Dan Sullivan ahead 49% to 45% over Democrat Mark Begich in the Alaska Senate race, with 73% of the vote in.
  • The question many pundits are asking, is will POTUS Obama pivot as Bill Clinton did and work with Republicans on issues ranging from taxes, regulations, ObamaCare, Dodd-Frank and iborder reform/immigration?
  • Democratic strategist and commentator Joe Trippi said he doesn’t think the president will pivot, “that is not his style.” Time will tell.


Bump going into Louisville

Billions of dollars are already chasing manufactured housing. Researchers and investors – foreign and domestic- are ‘all over’ the pages of MHProNews and MHLivingNews.com every month. We’ve been contacted by those seeking to invest in the industry. We are getting more media, academic and other not-for-profit inquiries, and can’t help but notice that federal officials are on our site by the thousands monthly.

Combine those facts, with a trend of enthusiasm, ever growing turnout and increasing business being done at the Louisville Show, it would be no surprise if the election results fuel the reassurance in the strong come back for the 2015, Louisville Manufactured Housing Show, 21-23rd of January.

The Gillespie Lesson for Politicos and Manufactured Housing, Getting and Staying on Positive Message

Regardless of your party, as a political independent, let me say that the Republican victory has to be seen in the light of the fact that their polling nationally is actually lower than the presidents. Ted Cruz is right, Republicans are being given a second chance by voters who turned away the Obama lead Democratic agenda.

By crafting a positive message, with 99.8% of the vote in, Ed Gillespie closed a 22 point gap with far less spending than on his behalf than Mark Warner enjoyed. At 8:14 AM ET, FoxNews reported:

  • Mark Warner – 49.05%, Democrat 1,072,487
  • Ed Gillespie – 48.50%, Republican 1,060,337
  • Robert Sarvis – 2.45%, Libertarian 53,594

Elections are in large part about marketing and messaging. Manufactured housing has to learn from electoral experiences that we can creatively and pro-actively cut through the noise and advance our cause. Manufactured housing is a bi-partisan issue, because quality affordable housing is trans-partisan. HR 1779 and S 1828 – or their successor bills in 2015 – are now better positioned to advance. In a trillion dollar a year U.S. Housing market, MH can, should and must pursue the messaging and paths that would advance us to success, on behalf of home owners who are overall happy with the product MH professionals provide.

We will present a more detailed thoughts on that in the days ahead. Stay tuned and be a part of the action. ##

la-tony-kovach-latonykovach-com-By L. A. “Tony” Kovach.


L.A. 'Tony' Kovach, MHM - Publisher, Marketing Director and Industry Consultant
Manufactured Home Marketing Sales Management trade journal
www.MHMarketingSalesManagement.com aka MHMSM.com aka MHProNews.com