A Virtual Election: How Democrats Campaigned Without The Candidates

The 2008 Florida Democratic Primary is the first "virtual primary" in U.S. history.

It is a unique event in American history, where technology and people power are being used to determine not only who Floridians favor as the Democratic nominee, but today's primary also will play a key role in determining the next president of the United States.

Last year, the Democratic presidential contenders signed a pledge not to campaign in Florida before the primary to punish Florida for violating Democratic National Committee rules and moving the vote in advance of the February 5 barrier set up in 2006.

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Obama - ahead of Clinton Machine AND the mighty Blogosphere

Mydd had an article where it explained the Obama movement
http://mydd.com/story/2008/1/5/223227/67 68
"A careful observer of the Obama and Clinton campaigns' youth turnout efforts could have seen the results coming. Hillary's team were told to invite young people over for a night of watching TV shows like Gray's Anatomy or The Office, and use that opportunity to engage them in a conversation on the issues. Obama's team went about finding its cadre of supporters by using their website, built off of the FaceBook operating system or platform, in tune with Millennial's social networking habits. Once they found potential supporters, Obama's team didn't ask them to watch television, something Millennials do infrequently, unless it's on their laptop with shows downloaded from the Net, but to hang out at the local bar. There Michelle Obama, or "the closer" as her husband calls her, asked them to come out on caucus night and change America's politics forever." end quote

To which I add - Obama got these new voters while Edwards who was the last one in internet activity in 2004, merely cultivated his old "netroots" (from Kerry campaign and a few other old venues - by pumping advertising money  Kos, Democratic Underground et al and surrogate posts and mostly - trying to craft for himself a persona to fit those blogs and forums demands (way different than the 2004 candidate).
But this is 2008 - and new people vote today, people who don't give a damn about Kos, DU, but somehow discovered Obama and were inspired by him and brought into the political process.
Sorry, "netroots" - the word itself is antiquated already...

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whither the netroots?

did the netroots lose? did they change?

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Feingold for President: The Best Campaign That Never Was

I'm not usually a person who pays much attention to anniversaries. I'm pretty good at remembering the birthdays of my siblings, and my parents, and even some of my cousins. And I usually have a good idea when major national holidays are coming up. But otherwise, I'm pretty clueless. I couldn't tell you if this week is the anniversary of the release of "Blonde on Blonde" or the passage of the Wagner Act, or anything I else I might find really exciting if I knew about it.

But earlier this month, I realized an anniversary was coming up that would probably be forgotten by most, but is incredibly important to me. It was one year ago tomorrow, November 12, that Senator Russ Feingold announced he was not going to run for President of the United States. And for me that was, with the exception of the brief satirical goodness that was Stephen Colbert's campaign, the last time I was really excited about the 2008 presidential campaign.

So, in this diary I am going to try to write about why I wish Senator Feingold had decided differently, and, since I love reading alternate history novels, try to realistically speculate on how things might be different if Senator Feingold was in the race.

A note for those passionate supporters of our Democratic candidates: I think all the candidates in this race are good, or at least good enough. I'll happily support any of them in the general election. But part of the reason I'm writing this diary is because I can't get particularly fired up about any of the candidates in the race. If you feel like rationally stating in the comments why you think maybe I should get excited about your candidate, that's fine. I'd be glad to read it. If, however you feel like posting, "FEINGOLD SUX! Hillary/Obama/Edwards/Biden/Dodd/Richard son/Kucinich/Gravel/Ron Paul RULES!" I'd request that you don't. Don't you have something better to do? Look, on that other thread over there...someone is attacking your candidate!

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Hillary is THE Grassroots / Netroots Candidate

Some of you might have caught the big announcement yesterday regarding Hillary's new website - The Fact Hub.  It's getting quite a bit of attention already - The New York Times just did an article on it.  Since that site was announced I've been thinking about all the ways Hillary's gone out of her way to engage the good people of the netroots over the past 6 or 7 months, and I couldn't help but come to the realization that Hillary is INDEED  the one and only true Grassroots / NetRoots Candidate out there right now.

Seriously - hear me out you guys.  I'm not just rambling here - make the jump cos there's a whole lot more...

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