For those of you not already aware, I’ve just hit the ground in Texas doing what my boss described this way earlier today in an e-mail:
“I’ve also recently deployed our communications director, Stephen Gordon, to help with the top campaign in our Candidate Tracker.”
I’ll try to keep ya’ll up-to-date on what’s happening on the ground here and I hope to spend time with quite a few Texas candidates while in the Lone Star State.
More people have offered to buy me beer than I can accept for the time I’ll be here, so please don’t be too offended if I miss out on a round from time to time; I’ve got some serious work to do and it’s getting close to Election Day. I’ll be blogging (hopefully starting tomorrow) about what I see and hear down here over at the LP blog. Please be sure to stop by often over the next ten days or so.
The short view of what happened today was that it was an incredibly productive day from a campaign viewpoint. My initial perception is that Bob Smither and Kevin Tunstall (his campaign manager) have a great idea of what they need to do at ground zero. What they don’t have are the resources the Dems and Repubs are plugging into this race from a national level. They also require some of the vendor, technical and other contacts required to make the difference in a race suddenly turned high profile.
We primarily focused on fundraising today. Fortunately, I’ve got contacts with national lists the campaign will be able to utilize. They fully closed one deal, verbally closed another and we are working on a third. For those of you who have worked national campaigns, you know the dance required with these negotations. To have done this in a matter of hours is incredible.
They’ve got a lot of good stuff going on the ground. They’ve got a very organized ground crew knocking on doors most days. They may be paying a bit too much for yard signs, but I know more competitive vendors they may be able to use. They’ve got good voter lists and have used them to place over 60,000 phone calls, so far. The candidate has a public event almost every day. Tomorrow, he’ll face Lampson and the key write-in Republicanat a local country club. They plan to continue these sorts of efforts until Election Day.
While we were busy on these sorts of details, the Republican WRITE-IN candidate with the difficult to spell name (I generally refer to her as the “Hyphen-Lady”, but am hoping one of you has a better suggestion) held a fundraiser. She brought in the ever-so-popular Dick Cheney, accompanied by the ever-so-ethical Tom DeLay, to raise what Kristen Mack reported to be around $200K.
Ms. Houston Smoking Ban might have done better and thrown some higher cards down on the table. Perhaps in addition to DeLay and Cheney, she should have played the Mark Foley, Tom Reynolds and Dennis Hastert cards. Unfortunately for her, there are but two jokers in a standard deck.
At this moment, all I can do is laugh. $200K is chump change compared to what ya’ll have provided campaigns with which I’ve been involved in the past. One can tell how badly the GOP is blowing up when Libertarians have the ability to outperform Republicans.
Disclaimer: While Stephen Gordon has not received any compensation from any current Texas political campaign, he is a paid employee of the Libertarian National Committee.