Thursday, August 18, 2005

Democratic Congressional Candidate Calls for Competitors in Primary

GoodWorks-PAC.org has joined its first Congressional candidate, Joe Otterbein, in announcing his novel campaign (see story http://ydr.com/story/politics/81455/). Joe is following the GoodWorks-PAC game plan by calling for more Democrats to compete against him in the Democratic primary.

It’s counter-intuitive, but having more Democratic opponents in the primary campaign can actually help Joe win in November, 2006.

Why is that? Well, first of all, you need to know that Joe is running in one of the most Republican areas in the country. No Democrat has run for Congress in the PA-19th since 2000. The Republican Congressman, Todd Platts, is also reputed to be one of the nastiest campaigners in the Republican Party! Can you imagine?

So, the situation is difficult. But look on the bright side: having Democratic opponents cannot make Joe’s chances any worse. Even better, having more opponents will help shield Joe and his opponents from Republican attacks during the course of their primary campaign.

During their primary, Joe and his opponents will work together on a series of public service events. They will show up together in the media, calling on Democrats to do Good Works throughout the 19th district. We will see them working side by side on projects that highlight the profound problems facing the communities in their impoverished district. They will demonstrate the Democratic Party’s commitment to community, responsibility, and fair play. There will be plenty of chances for them to attack Todd Platts’ record, but never once will they attack each other. There will only be the continuous imagery of their ceaselessly working together to make life better for their constituents.

Meanwhile, behind the scenes, GoodWorks-PAC will be maintaining the databases that Joe and his competitors need in order to bring lots of Democrats out to their events. The turn-out effort on Election Day is called the Get Out The Vote (GOTV) drive. A GOTV drive requires lists of people who need rides, and drivers who can give rides, and people who will provide food, and locations where food will be dispensed, and people who will set up booths, and people who will staff the booths, and people who will hand out literature, and people who will hold signs, and people who will make reminder phone calls, and so forth and so on, and every one of Joe’s public service events will be a GOTV fire drill.

Whoever wins the Democratic primary is going to have to face a Republican monster. But at least he or she will have all of that data and organizational effort. GoodWorks-PAC will hand over all of the candidates’ GOTV databases to the Democratic primary winner. At least Joe has that going for him.

But how do we know that Joe will win for sure? Joe will certainly win either the primary or else the lasting glory of selflessly recruiting the candidate who goes on to win the primary. Joe will also enter the general election with an extraordinarily good field organization. He will bring out an unusually high number of Democratic voters and thereby contribute to the defeat of Senator Rick Santorum. That’s a big win. Joe will also contribute to the understanding of how we can make use of his cooperative public service campaign style in future elections. And as for the Congressional seat, who knows? Maybe the voters will know the difference between wordy lies and working truth when they see them side-by-side.

All in all, GoodWorks-PAC will be working in Joe’s district and two others that together cover a total 17 counties in eastern PA.

Please help us make Joe’s public service campaign a big success. Come to http://www.GoodWorks-PAC.org/donate and join us right now.

If you want to see how well this style of campaigning works in practice, take a look at the city council campaign of Gur Tsabar in New York City (http://www.gurforcitycouncil.com/). In the past few months, Gur has built a 500-book library for an elementary school in the East Village, handed out tax assistance coupons for low-income families, orchestrated a rock concert to benefit tenants at risk of losing their affordable housing, distributed emergency cell phones to seniors, conducted a clothing drive for victims of domestic violence in New York City shelters, organized a massive district-wide voter registration drive, produced a small business resource guide to help local entrepreneurs, and held a food drive for hungry families in the New York City. He is an underdog candidate in a crowded field of 11 opponents, but as a result of his efforts he is leading them all in press recognition.

Please join us and help spread the word!
Looking forward to working with you soon,

Eric Loeb
Executive Director


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