Daily Kos
Political analysis and other daily rants on the state of the nation

Monday | June 09, 2003

Time to back our nominee

Back in January I wrote the following (edited for space):

One of the dominant complaints on this site is that so many good ideas get floated, but it's clear none of it ever gets to the party leadership in DC. The only people who have the leadership's ear are the Big Donors and the Democratic special interest groups (unions, environmental groups, etc.). While I don't mind that they get to help shape the agenda, it still presents a problem for the rank and file that gets shut out of the system. The result? Look no further than the 2002 elections.

Yesterday I wrote a post about the big money advantage enjoyed by the GOP. McAuliffe is desperately trying to raise $100 million to help tide over the eventual nominee through the summer of 2004 in the face of a massive GOP barrage.

So, what if the "grassroots", at least those of us represented by sites like dKos, MyDD, Atrios, Talk Left, DU, and others, were able to pool the resources of their respective readers? Yesterday I pledged $25/month, or $300 a year. If 334 of my readers did the same (my daily readership is in the 6,000 range [it's now in the 17,000 range -- k] Atrios is probably double that), that would be $100,000 in the DNC coffers -- real money. In the GOP, that would make this site a "Pioneer", with special access to GOP decision makers. I would expect the same from the DNC.

This would be a blog effort to make the concerns of our respective readers known to the party leadership. Each blog could handle it its own way, but I would take volunteers to represent the dKos donor group -- in special events, drafting memos, etc. Our individual $300 donations may mean little in the big picture (and garner little attention from the DNC), but things would change once we got into the tens of thousands, or even hundreds of thousands.

So how would this work in practicality? I would encourage the DNC to set up a Revenue Sharing-type program. You know the ones -- Amazon and CDNow and all those guys run them. You slap their books or ads on your site, and you get a cut of any sales they make originating from your site. In this case, the websites would not get a cut of the proceeds, their donations would simply be tallied. The more donations each site amassed, the more influence it would enjoy.

Well, the DNC listened, and delivered exactly what I had requested. It's called ePatriots, and will allow bloggers to take "credit" for raising donations on behalf of the Democratic Party's eventual nominee fund.

This is exciting stuff, guys. It has nothing to do with individual Democratic Party candidates. Someone will win, and that someone will emerge bloodied and broke from the Dem primary, only to be hit with $200 million in GOP attack ads. We can't let that happen. We must help arm our party with hard dollar donations to fight back.

As I wrote back in January, we have the potential to raise BIG BUCKS for the party, and take collective credit for the effort. I know some of you back then wanted to consider a PAC, but I'm not going to make that happen. PACs require lawyers and staff, and I can barely find time in my day to sleep. This, on the other hand, is a concrete and solid way we can help oust Bush from the White House.

So donate today! However large or small, one-time or recurring, it will all help.

Oh, one more important point: I worked with the DNC in setting up ePatriots. As such, I am essentially test driving it to ensure everything works as advertised. Once we are certain the system is solid the DNC will make this system available to all bloggers and webmasters.

Dean has had great success in raising money online (over $1 million at last count). It's time we show the Democratic Party that we can do the same, and that our voices must be taken into account as the party makes policy. The DNC is not perfect, not by a longshot, but it's the only party we've got. Let's help it get its act in gear.

Update: I wrote this post just about 40 minutes ago, and it has already raised nearly $1,000 for our anti-Bush efforts. People, we are on the verge of something big here.

Update 2: It's been nearly two hours and we're over $2,000.

Posted June 09, 2003 10:46 AM | Comments (149)


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