Once again a grassroots, word of mouth campaign for a better candidate has beaten back a well-funded campaign backed by the DCCC. The Washington consultants running the democrats inside the beltway decided that Jim Craig, a local state rep, should go up against incumbent Jeb Bradley in November. They obviously had never heard him speak. And even more insulting, they announced this before the primary, before the voters in New Hampshire got a chance to chose who they thought would be the better candidate. AND they ignored Carol Shea Porter a woman who knows Bradley's record by heart and who is a convincing and dynamic speaker. Having heard both of them, the best way I can describe Craig's campaigning style is that Carol Shea Porter is to Jim Craig what my mother's best Givenchy scarf is to wet toilet paper around the neck.
But the real lesson to corporations and the DCCC is the power of word of mouth and grass roots efforts. Shea Porter had no money, couldn't afford to advertise, couldn't pay anyone to make phone calls and won by 20 percentage points by getting the word out via email and talking to real people in real living rooms (including mine.)
Craig had ten times more money -- enough to make at least 6 robo calls to everyone I know, fielded dozens of campaign ads on television, radio and in newspapers, and had enormous signs made (but remarkably few of them were actually put up.) Talk about measuring effectiveness. What does that say about ROI on the traditional forms of communications?
The bigger question is when will the DCCC realize that all the money in the world won't sway people who really listen to candidates, ask tough questions and vote their conscience. This isn't the first time the DCCC have come in and tried to tell Democrats how to vote and failed. The question is, when will contributors hold them accountable and start measuring the effectiveness of their efforts.