Tuesday, September 18, 2012

A Note on Unspent Money and Strategy

I’ve really enjoyed the last two posts by David Faith here at True North.  The first was exposing the voting record of Terri Bonoff, the incumbent DFL Senator in Faith’s district.  The second was about Mark Stefan, a GOP candidate who is running for the MN House.  In each, Faith, a SD44 Vice Chair, makes a thoughtful and reasoned case for his local candidates.  I’d encourage you to read them both.

But there was a part of the second post that really caught my eye. Emphasis mine.

Many, indeed, most House races this year will not be close. Most districts are solidly in the bag for one party or another. That means that Republicans’ ability to maintain control in the legislature and provide a counter-balance to Mark Dayton will come down to an astonishingly small number of key races in swing districts. 44B is one of those districts. Depending on which index you look at, 44B is somewhere between DFL +3 and dead even, which means it is within the margin of error under even the most pessimistic assumptions. Republicans can win here, and they’ve won here before. Mark Stefan can win this race, but he needs support. If you’re in 44B, or if you’re in a district that will not be close, one of the best things you can do this election to advance economic liberty is to support Mark Stefan in any way you can.

Faith is correct.  Many house races will not be close.  But many will.

For instance, we have two very winnable races here in SD45- first time candidate Jeff Pauley vs. 40 year incumbent Lyndon Carlson in 45A, and Reid Johnson vs. Mike Freiberg for an open seat in 45B.  The dynamics of redistricting in SD45 worked in our favor this year, and it’s conceivable we could win either seat, or, with some luck and hard work, both.  Neither is a slam dunk, but neither is a lost cause.

So here’s the pitch- if you live in a district that won’t be close (like say, if you live in Nate “Honey Badger” Atkins’ district) adopt a candidate from a few towns over and pitch in to help them out.  It’s time to be strategic.

If you’re an executive in a Senate District or Congressional District, and your committee is sitting on unspent funds, give some serious thought to where that money should go.  Then spend it.  Now.

Money in the bank doesn’t win elections.  Money spent on frivolous gatherings or next year’s Liberty Fest doesn’t win elections.  If you hold any position within the GOP (from Delegate to Deputy Chair) you need to ask how much money your local committee has, and how it will be spent.  If your committee isn’t planning a meeting, demand one.  I’ve heard some really dumb plans for spending money lately. Is your district one of them?

It’s imperative that we keep our legislative majorities. We have a governor who thinks resistance to tax increases is destroying our country.  The only thing standing in his way is the GOP legislature.

We only keep the legislature if we win elections. We only win elections if we think and act strategically.