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October 20, 2006

Use It Or Lose It

Chris Bowers of MyDD, with support from Markos, has developed an innovative plan to raise money from Democratic Congresscritters who either have no Republican opposition or have only token opposition.  Chris has created a page to let everyone know who those folks are, how to reach them and what we are asking of them - to give 30% of their campaign funds to Democratic challengers and/or party committees.

Here's what Chris says:

House Democrats as a whole do in fact have that money. According to the latest FEC reports, 69 Democratic House incumbents, each with more than $200,000 in their campaign accounts, are either facing no opposition for re-election, or are facing token Republican opposition that has failed to raise more than $10,000. Combined, these 69 incumbents have roughly $50,000,000 in their campaign bank accounts. If each of these 69 incumbents were to give 30% of their campaign funds either directly to competitive Democratic challengers and / or to the DCCC, that would make $15,000,000. Then, we would indeed have the money to fully target 60 Republican-held seats. This money is out there, and we are not using it. With so many campaigns in need of more money, it will be a tragedy if we do not use it now. This isn't about paying dues--this is about taking advantage of an exceptional opportunity that we may not have again for two decades.

In this state there is only one Congressman on this list, Norm Dicks in WA-06.  So please call his office and politely explain why you are calling, explain the program and the reason for the program. 

I just called Norm's Tacoma office (253-272-5884, DC number is 202.225.5916) ) and discussed the situation with the person who answered the phone.  He said that Dicks was hosting fundraisers for Democratic challengers.  I thanked him and said we're asking for more this year.  We're asking for 30% of what they have in their coffers.  In Dicks' case, 30% is $112,040 of the total of $373,466.  I also asked him to get back to me with the answer.  He said it was unlikely since they were quite busy. 

I'm guessing that they may change their mind if 200 or 400 or 1000 of us call.

Tips for good calls

1. Be polite                
2. Be prepared for pushback                
3. Tell them this is an extraordinary situation because so many seats are in play
4. Tell them others have given more than 30%            
5. Give them a way to contact you when they decide how much to pledge
6. Only call Representatives in your home state            

I like Norm Dicks just fine.  That's not the issue.  The issue is that we are in a historical election and we are very close to victory and we need that $15 million, $112,000 of which is in his hands.

Posted by Lynn Allen on October 20, 2006 at 01:09 PM in Best Practices, Candidate Races | Permalink

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