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May 03, 2004

Kerry Doing Fine

Folks are suddenly gnashing their teeth that Kerry's campaign is somehow in trouble, this NY TIMES analysis being typical.

Kerry has raised $80 million from 400,000 different people- $34 million of it over the Internet. He's survived the largest barrage of negative political advertising in history from the Bush campaign (something like $50 million in ads in the last month), yet Bush hasn't been able to open up a lead.

Kerry is not the most dynamic speaker, no question, but he'll wear well with people over time. Unlike Gore, who I knew would annoy people so much he'd blow the election, Kerry will plod along, absorb Bush's attacks, then close hard at the end. That's been his pattern in tough races in Massachusetts-- notably when he dispatched Bill Weld-- and was his pattern in the Democratic nomination fight.

And if you want to see where the campaign is making inroads at the grassroots, don't watch the official Kerry campaign, watch the 527s run by the unions. Folks are so busy trashing Kerry that are missing the growth of the most massive grassroots Presidential campaign in history: See these articles:

http://www.sptimes.com/2004/03/22/State/Liberals_gleaning_Fla.shtml

"By mid May, six months before Election Day, hundreds of full-time and part-time paid staffers will be spread across Florida mobilizing Democratic voters to beat President Bush. By several accounts, the ranks will grow to more than 1,000 by late June and continue swelling from there.
Bypassing campaign finance restrictions on unlimited campaign donations to the national parties, the groups are aiming to raise more than $200-million to unseat the president. They're focusing mainly on Florida and a handful of other battleground states, such as Ohio and Missouri."

http://www.1199seiu.org/ourlocal/1199news/april2004/heroes.cfm

"The Heroes program is one of the most ambitious political undertakings in the labor movement's history. 1199SEIU and its parent union, the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), have recruited some 700 members and activists willing to put their lives on hold right now to work for a better tomorrow. Heroes will spend three to six months educating and registering voters, doing political action work and getting the message of change out in Ohio, Pennsylvania and Florida, three of 15 crucial "battleground" states."

http://www.thenation.com/doc.mhtml?i=20040426&s=nichols

"Through projects like the "Steel Canvas"--in which activists, many of them laid-off steelworkers, knock on doors with leaflets reading, "The Bush Administration sent my job overseas. What should I do now?"--ACT has already contacted 190,000 Ohioans and registered 36,000 new voters. And that's just the start. With a budget that is expected to reach $95 million, ACT has fifty organizers and 450 canvassers working in Ohio, which Bush carried only narrowly in 2000, and is replicating that level of activity in the sixteen other swing states that hold the balance in this year's contest between Bush and Democrat John Kerry. "
I think we're doing fine out there.

Posted by Nathan at May 3, 2004 07:52 PM