50 State Strategy

An addendum, of sorts, to the previous post on how Obama won. Apparently, the 50 State Strategy is over:

Right now, the strategy means handing over large grants to state parties from the DNC, and also paying for local organizers in the state. It was effective both as an organizing strategy (see the DNC memo on the subject) and as a political strategy for Howard Dean, as state parties hold large numbers of votes in the DNC and like receiving lots of money and free organizers from the DNC.

This was a program for which the netroots fought hard the past several years. Now that it seems to be over, I hope that our opinion of the fifty-state strategy doesn’t take the same route as our opinion of the utility of appearing on Fox News, including telecom immunity in FISA, or elevating Rahm Emanuel to positions of extreme power. It isn’t right just because Obama did it, although I fear many people will say so.

I think this strategy made both good sense and political sense, and it’s strange to think the Dems would leave all that work behind. But this is something Emanuel fought Dean on, and now the former is Obama’s chief of staff, so, from that perspective, it very well could be true.


4 responses

  1. LOL

    I’m sorry, but seeing the people who supported an idea that helped get Obama elected get shafted by him and his new coterie makes me laugh. I’m nasty that way and am honest enough to admit it.

    Obama – and most of his transition team – are graduates of The Chicago Machine. They’re experts at “use them and loose them” politics.

    You should expect four years of the same. Under their school of politics the constituency only matters in election years.

  2. My post was more about the strategy of politics, and not whether or not Obama will “shaft” his supporters. On that point, though, I don’t necessarily disagree with you completely, although I probably won’t enjoy it as much as it seems you will.

  3. Well, my comment and strategy sort of intersect. It’s the DNC’s and Obama’s strategy to focus on the FEDERAL elections, not the State and Local levels, or on various referendums. They’re a top-down federalist system.

    The local groups were useful to them during the national elections, but are now seen as extraneous and a waste of money that can be “better spent” furthering federal edicts.

    Yeah, I’m gloating a bit more than a little – but then I’ve been warning people of this for a while. And hey! I’m GOP, so think how I’ll be fairing in the coming years…

  4. Actually, the 50 State Strategy that Howard Dean (and the liberal “netroots” bloggers) promoted was all about getting Democrats involved at the State and local levels.

    That was the whole point — the recognition that Dems would never be competitive in states like NC or NE or really any of the “red states” unless they starting building and organizing from the ground up.

    What’s in question now, I think, is whether that system/strategy is being abandoned. (And whether or not Rahm Emanuel is behind it…)

    But I don’t think there’s any question that the DNC with Dean was interested in a local, bottom-up movement — that was why he was voted in as Chair. (It’s the state and local delegates that vote for Chair, and they had their own interests in mind…)

    And that’s why I think we saw many state legislatures and governors go to the Dem side, especially in 2006.

    Whether or not Obama and the DNC now see the states as “extraneous” is yet to be seen…you might be right on that. We’ll know soon enough.

    As far as your party, you’re right — you’re in trouble!!!


    Really, it’s so interesting to see what’s happening within the Republican party. There seem to be a number of factions vying for power…

    Are you aware of The Next Right and folks like Patrick Ruffini? They’re doing a lot to try and move the party into the 21st century, in terms of using social networks and the net. Interesting stuff, although they seem to be heavily behind Sarah Palin, which, at least in my opinion, is not the place the GOP should be looking for a future.

    Anyway, politics isn’t fun with at least a little gloating… :-)

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