Fresh Paint
Saturday, April 17, 2004
Make Sure Those Grass Roots Stay Watered
Taking the Campaign to the People, One Doorstep at a Time (washingtonpost.com)
In Ohio and a small core of other states on which this year's contest will hinge, grass-roots voter registration, persuasion and turnout operations are underway on an unprecedented scale: never so early, never so large, never so central to strategies for victory in a presidential race that likely will be settled, once again, at the wispy margins.

Ohio is vibrating with the oldest kind of politics, being waged in a new and exotic landscape. The overhaul of campaign finance laws two years ago crimped the traditional way Democrats funded and waged campaigns much more than it did the GOP. Here in Ohio, President Bush's fully staffed and methodical campaign would be trampling Sen. John F. Kerry's (D-Mass.) barely existent state operation on the ground and air alike were it not for this year's most novel political fact: the emergence of well-funded and aggressive independent groups on the left. The largest of these, America Coming Together, has 18 offices in Ohio, and its staff of 450 has already knocked on 235,000 doors.
Really good article on grassroots programs in Ohio -- and also what Bush is up to. Grassroots efforts really do work, even though not all the work is as yummy as having a bake sale, unfortunately. In the end, though, the key is personal contact and truth, not rhetoric.

Nighty night, everyone.

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