Deep under the surface of this election, it must be noted that this was an atypical election cycle.However, a major problem is that these types of cycles will continue, and become more frequent. You have a very disappointed and agitated base, along with a large portion (some 40%) of people being agitated Independent voters. The Clinton campaign surrogates, specifically her online contingent, took great pains to alienate this potential base. Correct the Record, online trolls, and run of the mill supporters took great pain to inform some segments of the population that their potential vote was not needed or wanted. Rather than attempting to build a unity coalition between her base (roughly half of the Democratic Party), Sanders base (roughly the other half) and voters who consider themselves Independent, her supporters took it upon themselves to insult, belittle, bully, or in many other ways alienate potential voters.
Complicating matters, few if any efforts to reach those voters after the alienation. In what can only be considered bad taste, rather than actual attempts to correct the record, fear and inevitability tactics were used to attempt to force potential voters into siding with the Clinton Campaign. This was after rumors of rigging the Democratic Primary and the attempt to show unity at the Convention by silencing protesters though various tactics become wide spread and well known. For many undecided voters, chants of “USA! USA! USA!” only served to illustrate the similarities between the two parties, and fostered not only resentment, but a confirmation that the parties are no different today.
Now I said this was an atypical election cycle, as the unemployment numbers are low, typically a boon for candidates running for the presidency on the ticket for party of the sitting president. The Stock Market is doing extremely well, and Obama's approval rating is very good for this stage in his presidency. Yet, nobody seemed to care to notice the brewing storm that was coming. Even the Vegas odds makers seemed unaware of what was happening. That is a sign of the times, politics are about to become very unstable for a wide variety of reasons, all of which are leaving “pundits” and politicians scratching their heads.
First, while unemployment is low, you have many people who are unemployed that are not counted as being unemployed. If you mow your neighbors yard for ten buck, you are not unemployed. If you move back in with your parents and they have you do chores to help out, you are not considered unemployed. If you have been out of work, and have given up hope of finding work, you are not unemployed. If you are working five hours a week, you are not unemployed. See a trend here, the politicians and network bobble-heads are looking at the unemployment numbers are yes they are low... But down here on the ground, where our boots are, jobs are hard to come by, they are often few in hours, low on wages. Sure, when you create 250,000 jobs, that is a good thing, but when 175,000 are low paying part time jobs, you have more people working more jobs, leaving many people without adequate work, and on a fundamental level, somewhere in the back of their mind, they see themselves getting further and further behind, while those at the top get further and further ahead. As with the polls Clinton and her advisers were banking on the wrong information.
In a cruel twist of fate, as the stock market improves many aspects of our lives fail. Insurance companies are making record profits, driving up the prices of their stocks, while costs for health insurance are skyrocketing. Yes, the price of gas is low, while oil companies make record profits, yet there are oil workers out of work, and no jobs have been created in green energy to keep their lights on. Other factors involved in wall street records often include lay offs, pay cuts, etc. Ironically enough, as the Clinton campaign faltered and collapsed in spectacular fashion, Wall Street responded with a massive aftermarket sell off, a sign that Clinton was Wall Street's horse in the race, now it has rebounded, but still.
Even with his popularity among voters, Obama could not give Clinton a good rub. His good mojo just would not rub off on her, and if anything it tarnished him. Its the equivalent of The Rock being unable to get his cousin cheers. This was due to Clinton's massive popularity deficit.
I have also heard that we learned that conventions, debates, endorsements, defections, missteps, commercials, ground games, and surrogates do not matter. Sure, endorsements help, but at some point, they loose power. Yes, I respect Morgan Freeman's opinion, his knowledge and experience. Yet, my personal distaste of the candidate he endorsed did not sway me. Yes, he is a great actor, he is a very intelligent gentleman, his words of reassurance, his reasoning and statements about Clinton came from his heart, and he believed everything he said, and that resonated with many people. For others, it was nothing more than the typical pro-Clinton ad, with Mr. Freeman narrating, and giving his endorsement. Bill Maher, endorsed and took the same path as many online supporters took, and unlike Mr. Freeman, he has tarnished himself.
Now, the exit polling is truly and oddity. The fact of the matter is the UN uses exit polling to determine just how many shenanigans are occurring in a given election. If there is a great enough discrepancy between the actual vote numbers and exit polling, it sends up all kinds of red flags, and probably a few neon signs screaming something is wrong here. We say this in the primaries in many states, and of course we have the Wikileaks emails, rumors, and the fact that several people resigned from the DNC.
The “blue wall,” of Democratic voters, people like me who always, and without fail voted blue no matter who... We became enraged by what we saw and heard during the primaries and the convention. Speaking of which, there were protests not covered by the media, there were staged walk outs, protesters chanting “no more war,” while the Democratic Party pretended nothing was wrong, and nothing was happening, while killing the lights on protesters and shouting them down. Rumors and tales of section leaders being texted counter chants. Yet the Party itself claimed that there was nothing to see, everything was okay. This denial only further inflamed the agitation of the people within their base.
Ultimately Clinton did not have the required delegates to outright win the nomination, even with the rumors of rigging. It came down to the super-delegates, who ignored petitions, letters, emails, phone calls, and many of their personal visits, with many saying they knew better than the people, and that they would do what they wanted to do. Clinton running a better campaign is moot. Yes, Clinton had more votes in the primaries, had a lead in delegates as well. Yet, the super-delegates ignored the protesters, ignored letters, emails, faxes, voice mails, the potential of scandals, and people saying they would not vote for Clinton. They played a numbers game, and they lost. Clinton was viewed by many as a flawed candidate, the fear tactics swayed some voters to hold their nose and vote for her, but it left many apathetic, a given trend in any election. Only this time, it was more severe, Clinton was unable to inspire people.
Due to her personality, her baggage, voter resentment, and the choice of a conservative democrat as her running mate, it turned many younger people off to politics this cycle. In their mind her priorities were not their priorities. At the time she chose Kaine, a super-delegate himself, she started placing nails in the coffin of her campaign. It also cemented the stances of some potential voters. If anything her campaign managed to flip the script, rather than the GOP running headlong off the right cliff, the DNC wounded itself severely.