Early Returns

Who's to Blame When a Candidate Loses?

Jonathan Bernstein's morning links.

1. Seth Masket at Pacific Standard is absolutely correct about blaming campaigns for electoral losses (and crediting campaigns when the candidate wins). Did Hillary Clinton's campaign make mistakes? Absolutely. Would a perfect campaign have won? Given how close the result was -- again, absolutely. Was Clinton's campaign below average? No idea. Of course, it's always worth going back and learning from any campaign, but that doesn't mean it was a poorly run effort. Perhaps it was good, and Donald Trump's was just better -- or perhaps it was just a better year for Republicans, and coming close was the best Democrats could expect. Either way, perfect is the wrong standard to use when assessing a campaign.

2. Julia Lynch at the Monkey Cage looks into Italian history to understand Trump.

3. William Adler at Vox argues that Trump may wind up similar to Benjamin Harrison

4. Back to the Monkey Cage, for Anna Grzymala-Busse and Monika Nalepa on the protests in Poland.

5. My Bloomberg View colleague Francis Wilkinson talks with election law expert Rick Hasen about voter fraud

6. Nate Silver has good advice for Democrats.

7. And the New Republic's Jeet Heer defends Twitter essays. As someone who uses the form (sometimes eventually turning it into a column, often not): I agree! And if you don't like 'em, that's fine, too; don't follow him (or me).

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    To contact the author of this story:
    Jonathan Bernstein at jbernstein62@bloomberg.net

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    Brooke Sample at bsample1@bloomberg.net

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