Bloggers may make for an effective bogeyman for the administration: people misunderstood enough to be marginalized. But bloggers aren't the biggest problem for Rahm Emanuel's strategy of passing something...anything, in fact they aren't even the biggest problem online.
If anything, progressive blogs have been overly accommodating by creating a discussion-heavy atmosphere over the disagreements between Democrats. The administration should be relived that bloggers opposing the bill have largely taken such an approach. Because the bloggers opposing the bill have by and large shown far more of a willingness to get their hands dirty and fight with every tool available. From fundraising to message to organizing, I can't imagine anyone would rather go into a political fight with the bloggers supporting anything than the bloggers fighting to make the bill better. I mean, Fred Hiatt didn't bring on Ezra Klein because of all he'd done to elect Democrats.
But bloggers aren't the main problem, not even online.
If there is anything keeping up at night administration online folks like Macon Phillips and Jesse Lee, it is email...
The Progressive Change Campaign Committee and Democracy for America are running a new television commercial in Maine and Washington, DC, urging Senator Olympia Snowe to support a public health insurance option. The ad features a woman who thought her family had good health insurance until her husband got cancer, and medical bills not covered by the insurance company forced them into bankruptcy. Watch it:
As many of you know, over the last five days, the Progressive Change Campaign Committee, in partnership with a number of progressive organizations and blogs including Senate Guru, asked those in the netroots, "Should a Draft Sestak movement be created to take on Sen. Arlen Specter in the Pennsylvania Democratic primary?"
The results are in and they are overwhelming. 85% of Pennsylvanian respondents and 86% of respondents nationally want Democratic Congressman Joe Sestak to challenge Arlen Specter in the 2010 Democratic Senate primary. The poll has even gotten the attention of Congressman Sestak, as the PCCC points out:
"I am honored that so many of you took the time to vote in the recent grassroots Straw Poll. Let me tell you, I and many others were paying attention. If I decide to run it will be in large measure because of the grassroots energy of so many people like you. Until I and my family make that decision, please accept my thanks and my best wishes as you continue be active participants in our people-powered democracy. Thank you so very much!"
Due to such an overwhelming response, a Draft Sestak Fund has been created on ActBlue. To contribute and further encourage Congressman Sestak to enter the race, click on the image below:
If you need any additional motivation to contribute to this effort to draft a real Democrat to oppose Specter in the primary, consider Specter's actions since announcing his Party switch:
Over at the Dollar a Day to Make Norm Go Away campaign, Norm Coleman's insistence on being a sore loser has raised over $60,000 to help progressive congressional challengers defeat Republicans in 2010.
And that number gets higher by the hour.
This campaign was launched 2 weeks ago by Howard Dean's Democracy for America and the new Progressive Change Campaign Committee (which I co-founded after leaving MoveOn.org, along with some other great folks).
The goal is to change the incentives for Coleman's DC funders. Before, there was really no downside for those bankrolling Coleman's endless court challenges and denying Al Franken his Senate seat. But as thousands of us sign up to give $1 every day Norm refuses to concede -- to help progressives defeat Republicans -- the equation changes.
There are two things that make this campaign work: scale and buzz.
We've achieved great scale, but I'd like to formally invite anyone who hasn't already signed up to join the cause: NormDollar.com
I'd also like to thank DFA, MoveOn, Darcy Burner, BlogPAC, and countless blogs for sharing news of this campaign with their networks.
What happens when you mix Tom Geoghegan (running to replace Rahm Emanuel in the House on March 3, who David Sirota calls "one of the greatest living progressives in America") with Robert Greenwald (indisputably one of the greatest progressive film makers in America)? You get this must-watch video:
Did you watch it? If not, push play and watch it! :)
Expanding Social Security? Single-payer health care? Make the banks reduce the debt regular people owe since taxpayers are reducing the debt banks owe? How often do you hear House candidates talk like this?
If we're progressives, we all must do what we can to help Tom Geoghegan win this House seat next month. Candidates like him deserve our support. Here are three things you can do to help Tom -- take your pick:
1) Make 20 calls from your living room for Tom.Click here to sign up. This will be a low-turnout election, so if 100 of us each make 20 calls from home to target voters, those 2,000 calls could seriously make the winning difference. Do it this weekend -- won't take too long.
2) Donate to Tom today. $125,000 has been donated online already -- and now's the time Tom needs money for his ground game. Donate to Tom here.
3) Go to Chicago to help--get free housing. Tom has some great volunteers and field staff on the ground. But he's running against the Chicago machine insiders, so we need to pitch in. Go for the final week, go for a weekend beforehand, go whenever you can before March 3. Email <span>jacob @ geogheganforcongress</span>.com to arrange free housing.