This is part two of my comments on the spirited discussion between michael in chicago and Rick Klau. (1, 2, 3)
The misrepresentation disclaimer from part one still applies.
And I will leave it to others to determine if parts one and two are each worth two cents, or if the combined value of the both posts is two cents.
I’m puzzled by the talk of “infrastructure” when Michael points to it as Christine’s competitive advantage. Is that where all the money’s been spent? *** All the volunteer legwork in the world will not reach the casual voters who will likely make the difference. A motivated base is great, and I’d love nothing more than to see it in full force on primary day. But a motivated base alone will not win this election.But it isn't a question of two months of Cegelis' volunteer legwork versus two months of the DCCC candidate's volunteer legwork plus an expensive media buy. If it were, I would start rolling up the tent.
Instead, this is the question that the primary will answer -- Which will win out: Last minute, high-priced media or more than two years of getting out and meeting the Democratic voters in the district?
I'm betting on Christine's months and months and months of meeting 6th District Dems, getting to know them and know about the issues that concern them -- and by that I don't just mean being able to identify the issues concerning the district, I mean knowing what problems are facing the district and having an intelligent, well thought out, locally tailored plan for addressing those problems. And why am I confident in the ultimate triumph of shoe leather over D.C. funded media?
Ironically enough, it is people like... Rick Klau.
As he said in his post, Rick knows and likes Christine Cegelis and did work on her campaign website. And why is that? It wasn't because of a piece of campaign lit that was mailed to him. And it sure wasn't because he saw one of her ads on television. It was because he has met Christine and has gotten to know her over the course of her long campaign for congress.
And Christine has gotten out to meet and know literally thousands and thousands of Democrats in the district. She has shaken their hands and listened to their stories of struggling in Bush's America and why they believe the nation is headed in the wrong direction. And she looked them in the eye and personally promised to work hard for them in Washington.
While the number of people that Christine could meet in the last couple of years is fewer than the number of people who can be reached by an expensive media blitz, but we shouldn't forget the universe of voters that we are talking about.
We are not talking about everyone in the 6th District or even every voter, that race will be run in November. We are not talking about every 6th District Democrat or everyone in the district who might consider voting for a Democrat.
Nope, the only people we are talking about are the 6th District Democrats who will take the time, on a Tuesday in March, to figure out where there polling place is and then vote in the Democratic primary -- a primary where the Democratic governor is effectively running unopposed. In other words: the Hardcore 6th District Democrats.
And many, if not most, of the Hardcore 6th District Democrats have met Christine. And many, many more know someone -- someone like Rick Klau -- who has met her.
Maybe a shotgun blast of paid media is enough to undermine all that sweat and shoe leather, but I don't think so.
This post first appeared in an even less coherent form at the So-Called "Austin Mayor" blog.