In response to:

The Dirty Little Secret of 2012

ScienceSquid Wrote: Nov 14, 2012 9:32 AM
While this analysis is plausible, I'd like to see the results of a survey that asks whether people didn't vote because of the negativity of the campaign, or because they didn't much care for Romney.

A version of this column appeared originally in THE DAILY BEAST.

To paraphrase the traditional Passover formulation honored in Jewish homes: why was this election different from all other elections? What makes 2012 stand out in recent political history, either as a temporary anomaly or a significant, long-term shift in the electorate?

The most striking change in the results this year involved a precipitous and alarming decline in voter participation, a drop-off that stemmed from a deliberate strategy by the Obama campaign and almost certainly provided the president with his margin of victory. Meanwhile, much of the conventional wisdom about...