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Thursday, May 13, 2004

Kerry Camp Setting Up Shop in Ohio

Posted by DavidNYC

See, they're obviously listening to me: A headline in today's Cleveland Plain Dealer reads: "Kerry's election team sets up camp in Ohio." Apparently, the Kerry campaign is opening field offices in Cleveland, Youngstown, Cincinnati, Toledo, Akron and several other cities. A Columbus office is slated to become the Ohio HQ. Of course, I'm incredibly happy to finally see this, and I'll talk a little bit more about why.

On the Dean campaign, I saw both sides: I started off in the grassroots, but when Dean opened an office in New York City, I went to work there. As important as the grassroots work we did was, there's only so much you can do without the guidance and resources of the campaign itself. In the grassroots phase, we went largely by instinct and never had much direction from above. We were able to hand out flyers at rallies and spread the word at meetups and online - all good things - but our abilities were pretty limited. And our budget (apart from people covering things out-of-pocket) was exactly $0.00.

In the campaign phase, we were able to do so much more: Charter buses full of volunteers to go up to New Hampshire, hold huge fundraisers, ensure that we got media coverage, and so forth. We were also able to give direction and advice (when needed) to independent grassroots groups. The bottom line is that it's important to have both a grassroots and an official presence. And now that we do in Ohio, I think we can really start to kick some ass.

Furthermore, the Kerry people are pledging that they'll stay in Ohio until the bitter end. A lot of people (I think rightly) blame Gore's loss in Ohio on the fact that he abandonded the state in the waning weeks of the 2000 campaign, so it's good to see Kerry making this kind of promise.

Now, about that voice-mail system.... :)

(Thanks to Cindy.)

Posted at 10:06 PM in Ohio | Technorati


This is apropos of an different swing state, but the Kerry campaign is working very hard in New Hampshire. I live in Massachusetts, and I have already received numerous e-mail requests for regular bus trips up to the Granite State to register voters, knock on doors etc. Of course, it is easier here, in his home state, but New Hampshire is one swing state that we should be able to win through shear dint of effort.

Posted by: Paul C at May 13, 2004 11:34 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

Paul, that's great to here. If you do take a bus trip up to NH, by all means report back here - I'm sure we'd all love to hear about it.

Posted by: DavidNYC at May 14, 2004 12:08 AM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

don't underestimate the need to be lowkey at this point in the campaign!! i believe allowing the bush admin to self destruct for a few more weeks is the key to victory for the kerry campaign. knowing exactly when to pounce is extremely important when the election is a referendum on the incumbent. this is not a science, it is an art. i believe it is important not to overthink and over-react to events at this time. there is an old saying that apply's aptly to this situation, "the hard part about playing chicken is knowing when to blink." this is not a NASCAR race, it is a chess match. making a move that not only puts you in check, but knocks over the pieces could be catastrophic at this point in the campaign. if you are wondering why a canadian would have such interest in this campaign, look no further than the policies of the ding-dong in the white house. he has made the world an extremely unstable place, and some moderation must be brought back to the debate. btw, i have worked on the campaigns of very senior elected officials in canada...don't mean to interfere, but we truly hope you people get rid of this idiot.

Posted by: canadian4kerry at May 14, 2004 04:31 AM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

They might very well be listening to you. When you posted your complaint about Ohio, I copied it and emailed it to them.

Posted by: jasonK at May 14, 2004 10:24 AM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

Jason, I'm flattered - but clearly this move has been in the works for some time. Then again, I did complain about this exact same topic back in early April - but of course, Ohio Democrats have been complaining for a long time, too.

Posted by: DavidNYC at May 14, 2004 12:21 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

Well, if we're talking about "interesting states for Democratic candidates", then Ohio historically surely is No. 1.

If my statistical research in the NARA-data (see: http://www.archives.gov/federal_register/electoral_college/votes/) is correct, the last Democrat to win Ohio but to lose the presidential election was Lewis Cass... and to those who really don't know who this guy was, well, don't be surprised: he ran back in *1848*!!!

Posted by: Bornheimer at May 15, 2004 03:00 AM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment