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Saving Democrats from themselves? by @BloggersRUs

Saving Democrats from themselves?

by Tom Sullivan

Tom Steyer has set himself up as the biggest bogeyman for the right-wing since George Soros. But while Soros hes kept a low-profile (I'm still waiting for my street protesting check.), Steyer is out collecting headlines. Politico asks if he isn't setting up a parallel party:

Steyer is building out an operation that’s bigger than anyone's other than the Koch brothers' — and the billionaire and his aides believe the reservoir of nontraditional voters he’s already activated could become the overriding factor in House and other races across the country.

Yet Steyer’s oversize role also stands to position him squarely against Democratic Party leadership, which has shown little appetite this fall for pursuing one of his signature causes: impeachment.

Unlike the $80 million being spent by Michael Bloomberg, Steyer will put his cash toward building out NextGen America and Need to Impeach, his two growing political organizations, as well as funding clean-energy ballot initiatives in Arizona and Nevada. Steyer has already doubled his initial $20 million investment in Need to Impeach to $40 million and has not ruled out adding more.

The biggest upside is between NextGen America and Need to Impeach he'll be employing upwards of 1,000 activists, giving them paid organizing experience that in many lefty circles tends to run on "psychic income" and cold pizza.
Need to Impeach is rolling out an extensive electoral plan, from having its most committed volunteers write postcards to other voters (which they are tracking through Smart Codes) to going in hard on field organizing, emails and phone calls. Steyer will also continue to air ads through November pressing the issue in an organization where the expectation is that each buy is at least $1 million.

Meanwhile, NextGen America is expected to hit 750 people on staff, with a heavy concentration on 400 college campuses, completely focused on turning out young voters, many of whom haven’t voted before and don’t tend to get as much attention as more regular and reliable voters. After a separate set of polling identified “strength in numbers” as the most effective message for voters under 40 (both those who identified themselves as pessimistic and optimistic about the future of the country), the organization has invested in digital ads and peer-to-peer messaging to press that point.

Affiliated groups getting people to promise to vote is terrific. Once they arrive at the polls, however, getting them to vote for all the less-than-marquee candidates they've never heard of, offices that build a party's farm team (school board, for example), involves more than messaging, canvassing, and phone banking for headliners ahead of time. That takes volunteers, planning and support at the county party level that's typically and chronically under-resourced.

Hey @TomSteyer, spare some change?

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For The Win 2018 is ready for download. Request a copy of my county-level election mechanics primer at tom.bluecentury at gmail.