Monday, April 24, 2006

Just how organized are the CT Dems?

This Saturday, April 29th, is the first of a series of grassroots organizing efforts that the Democratic National Committee has put together. The tactic is a neighbourhood canvass help hand out 750,000 door hangers with a Democratic message, promoting real security, honest and open government, economic prosperity and the usual stuff that makes Americans proud do be Americans. Naturally, I looked to see what CT efforts were posted on the site. Only 6! So kudos to Stratford, Southbury, Westport, Waterbury (although they want to do the 5th CD) New Brittain (Plainville & Bristol), and Groton. Over on the Republican side, nothing going on except attacks on Democrats. I suppose when you've taken the federal government to the to biggest deficit, created the largest entitlement programs and forgot to staff FEMA after creating terror warning color codes, you don't need to spin a positive message about the new republicanism.

Though GOP officials say the party is still guided by the same
conservative principles they championed when they took over Congress,
they have recognized over the subsequent half-dozen campaigns that
enforcing such orthodoxy would prove fatal to its centrist candidates
fighting to hang on in politically competitive states and districts —
a relatively small group, but one that has been essential to the GOP
maintaining its majority by only a dozen or fewer seats.

So why aren't the local town democratic party committees working overtime to push these critical so-called moderate republicans out? Could it be that the anti-war drumbeat is monopolizing too many resources?

Playing Defense: GOP Strives for Continuing Majority in ’06, Bob Benenson | Congressional Quarterly, Apr. 24, 200


Mr. Reality said...

You say...

"Over on the Republican nothing going on except attacks on Democrats. I suppose when you've taken the federal government to the to biggest deficit, created the largest entitlement programs and forgot to staff FEMA after creating terror warning color codes, you don't need to spin a positive message about the new Repblicanism"

Hey it's good to know that you don't involve yourself in attacks on Republicans!!!

Maybe if you would promote the message that is apparently in those 750,000 door hangers, maybe there can be an honest discussion.

disgruntled_republican said...

Mr. Reality-

Beat me to the punch.

And as to why D's aren't working to push the "Moderate Republicans" out...perhaps the people don't see a compelling reason to...or maybe there just aren't any quality candidates on the Dem side.

Queer_As_A_2_dollarbill said...

GC---Turfgrrl is supposed to represent "the middle"?

This post reeks of ctkeith/deanfan venom--which I appreciate from them because they make no bones about where they stand.

But in response to Turfgrrl: The GOP doesn't trumpet their grassroots organizing efforts by making them available on the internet. This is part of what's called strategy. A key part of one's strategy is not telling your opponents what your strategy is. The Dems have to highlight their efforts because they've been beaten over the head for two years now for having NO STRATEGY.

disgruntled_republican said...

I also noted, after reading the article cited, that the arguement presented here seems to be a partial representation of what was stated by the author. From the article:

"And the fact remains that the same polls showing discontent with a Republican-controlled Congress also show that the electorate is not exactly rallying to the Democrats. A Fox News/Opinion Dynamics survey April 4-5 showed that, while 29 percent approved of the job Republicans were doing in Congress and 53 percent disapproved, the ratings for Democrats were almost identical, at 29 percent approval and 51 percent disapproval."

Not exactly a mandate to push out moderate republicans now is it?

BRubenstein said...

GC...the war is commanding most of the attention because most of us believe the war is THE MAJOR ISSUE FACING THE BODY POLITIC TODAY.Those of us that are against this war are involved in many aspects of rebellion against it...anywhere from running candidates....protesting ( there is a huge protest on 4/29/06 in NYC)
and that takes alot of our end this war is gonna take simply more then working in electoral politics....teachins...letters to elected officials...etc..are also being done and are unseen by the bloggers here.. these unseen things are happening out in the streets and is a reason for Bush's low polling numbers.

BRubenstein said...

I meant the above as a response to Turfgrrl not GC...

TrueBlueCT said...


Just you wait and see. Bush and his idiotic war will get rid of more moderate Republicans than anything Democrats could do on their own.

Independent voters will be bending over backwards to give Democratic challengers the benefit of the doubt. I wouldn't want to be Lincoln Chafee or Chris Shays this cycle.

BRubenstein said...

To the extent that both political parties are owned by the corporations...wealthy..and influential....replacing Chaffee with a Democrat doesnt mean alot.

TrueBlueCT said...


Matt Brown would be a great change for the better. But now it's looking more and more like Sheldon Whitehouse, who I am less enthusiastic about, but hey, a pick-up is still a pick-up.

middlesexist said...


--I'm not sure why we're discussing Rhode Island politics on a CT blog, but for the record, Matt Brown is a perfect combination of ego, laziness and incompetence, having done an absolutely abysmal job as Secretary of State (his SoS website was down for eight months!) and has done little other than campaign for the Senate, doing so stupidly and badly (just look at the Hawai'i fundraising fiasco.)

The pimary is no longer serious for either party. Whitehouse has beaten off Brown, and Chafee's chased away that Cranston-mayor guy.

As far as I know, there are only two seriously contested state-level primaries remaining in New England, and those are the CT and MA governor's races.

middlesexist said...

Oh, I guess Lamont/Lieberman should be up there too, because I'm not sure anybody knows quite where that one's heading, if anywhere.

Stratford Dems Rock! said...

Hey, Turfgrrl:

Consider this your formal invitation to Stratford's Event.

We're looking to help our national party make a real splash locally.

Plenty of people have already signed up (yes, more than the 2 the DNC site indictates.)

We'd love to have you and everyone else who's interested in making a difference come by and be part of the team!

Word on the street is pizza, etc. will be served after.

Stratford Dems Rock! said...

Stratford's Event

Stratford Dems Rock! said...

I feel like a bad magician who has to say "Abracadabra" 3 or 4 times to get a trick to work.

middlesexist said...

Speaking of Stratford, which for me at least is the end of the earth, does anybody know anything about Rosa's convention there on May 15? What's the deal with that? Where is it? When is it? Why on earth is it in stratford? said...

Good post-

I read about the DNC door hanger drop but too late to coordinate anything in my town committee. Part of the problem is the lack of communication from the State party to the town committee folks. In my Senate District, our State Central Reps are present in donations only (don't get me wrong, we are greatfull, but we could use more of a dialogue).

This was very evident in the last municpal races, my town had a huge opportunity to win back the First Selectman's seat for the first time in 15 years. We were literally begging State Central for help and the only response we got was "voter file". Again, we appreciated the voter file, but we could have used a thousand dollars for another mailing, or someone coming in and helping organize a lit drop.

The problem on a national level is that the Democrats function from the top down instead of from the bottom up. Years ago I worked at the DCCC and that was exactly what happened, it was always "we know best how to win back the house"....a strategy that seems not to be working.

Howard Dean, I think is working to change that taking ques from the Democratic Blogosphere (evidence the Lamont campaign, hey I may not be a Lamont guy, but his 0 to 60 in half a quarter start is nothing short of amazing).

The Top down approach at the National and (at least our)State level will never be successfull it has to be bottom up. At the same time,the Grassroots and eGrassroots work is only successfull to an extent, eventually it needs the establishment of the party system to win a race in the end. The question Democrats need to ask is how and how soon we are going to mesh those things into an effective system.

Bottomline, we missed a huge opportunity as Dems in Connecticut this weekend...I think we are a big tent party, and by reaching out to Independents and letting people know CLEARLY what we stand for as a party we can make 2006 the year we actually do take back the House

MikeCT said...

Neither state nor local Democratic Web sites can be relied upon to gauge the level of activity or events. State Central and most DTCs are terrible about updating their sites.

In addition, there are many good reasons a DTC would not participate in this national campaign - it doesn't mention local candidates, many candidates have not even announced yet, and most DTCs coordinate with local campaigns. Chris Murphy is door knocking next month - I think it makes more sense for 5th CD people to help with that rather than spending limited funds to print generic DNC fliers.

I have no idea if DTCs will do a good job of outreach this year, but their participation in the DNC's pet projects is not an indicator. (Here's the PDF flier, by the way. A little fluffy, especially on the war.)

Brass Tacks said...

"Fluffy," indeed.

And can you IMAGINE the DNC even stole the DeStefano slogan. "America Can Do Better." Unless, of course, Howard Dean had it first and the JDS folks couldn't... ah... "do any better" with one of their own.

Score point for Malloy.

middlesexist said...

Jackie Kozin, is that you?

turfgrrl said...

mr. reality and disgruntled_republican,

Feel free to refute what I said about the RNC and republicans.

thanks for the invite but I have to work that day.

the referendum on the war was the 2004 election cycle and we all saw where that went.,
It's a bit of the chicken and the egg though. Smart DTC leaders leverage what they can from state and national. said...

Turfgrrl- As the Big O would say on the popular Big Show on WEEI out of Boston..."You're making my point"

Town Chairs shouldn't have to leverage anything to get help for their local DTC. State Central's business should be helping local DTC's get the message out, help run effective websites and blogs, and provide them with as much information as humanly possible.

Also, I don't know of a single DTC town chair that interacts directly with anyone at the DNC in the context of their job as DTC chairman.


In other news, Courant is saying and 61 is reporting that Zarella is out for CTSC.

BRubenstein said...


For many of us on the progressive side of politics the war isnt a "2004 election cycle event" is an event where real people die( over 2300 american) and maybe 30,000 iraqui. Additionally almost 1 trillion dollars have gone to this war in which we were mislead and lied to to get involved that could have been used for social programs.Also our traditional allies accross the world have not been with us in this war and we have lost worldwide credibility.

I cant speak for the other progressives in here such as keith,mike and the others, but i dont think their view on this Iraq war would be substantially different then mine.

disgruntled_republican said...


It may be an issue for you and your "progressive" friends but as turfgrrl said, it really is not the overwhelming issue of this campaign season. The mainstream of America voting in a GENERAL ELECTION did in fact vote on this in 2004. You can, and should, vote the way you feel and if thats it, more power to you.

TrueBlueCT said...

um, Kerry ran away from the war issue, and that was what cost him the 2004 elections. I had a collection of fence-sitters that I was in close contact with. To a person, they abandoned Kerry after his "I wouldn't have done anything different" statement.

What I heard back was that if Kerry wasn't any different than Bush, why should they support him? What people wanted from Kerry were strong and honest statements. John "Fake" Kerry came of as anything but genuine, and that lost him the election. Nothing else.