Campaign Insider

For campaign staffers, 6 to-dos in the off-season

by Dave Nyczepir / Dec 07 2012

When the liberal organizations Democratic GAIN and Atlas Project partnered earlier this year, one of the goals was to cut down on the number of out-of-work organizers flooding D.C. after Election Day.

In that effort, GAIN has hosted some 35 re-employment assistance workshops in more than two dozen states, and earlier this week held a national Post-Election GAIN Plan event Wednesday afternoon.

“No one has asked to sleep on my couch yet,

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Reconciling conservative new media

Reconciling conservative new media

by Andrew Clark / Dec 05 2012

Talking heads continue to parse the reasons Mitt Romney’s presidential bid fell short, and some think conservative new media was to blame.   

As Romney’s deputy director of digital rapid response in Boston, the team I served with developed and executed a fresh blueprint to communicate with online conservative media—something that had not been seriously attempted before at the presidential level. 

We did many things right and perhaps made a few

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Super PACs spent heavily on consultants

by Dave Nyczepir / Dec 04 2012

Most of the Super PACs active during the 2012 cycle spent the bulk of the money they pulled in on their stated purpose—candidate advocacy. But according to a new analysis from Bloomberg, many of the groups spent nearly the entirety of what they took in on “overhead.”   

According to the report, Super PACs on average spent just 16 percent of the money they raised on operations. From Bloomberg:

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Obama for America 2.0?

by Dave Nyczepir / Nov 28 2012

The official Obama 2012 Twitter account sprang to life late Wednesday morning—the first sign of activity since Election Day.

Campaign Manager Jim Messina has spoken to a new direction for Obama for America that will take advantage of the campaign’s online and offline networks to support President Obama’s administration moving forward. While digital experts expect OFA to get involved in legislative battles in the long run, for now it appears focused

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6 campaign sites that got it right in 2012

6 campaign sites that got it right in 2012

by Trevor Montgomery / Nov 21 2012

The quality of this cycle’s political websites speaks to the increased priority campaigns placed on online outreach.

Americans continue to move away from broadcast television in favor of online video. In 2012, campaigns responded by spending unprecedented ad dollars to reach voters on the web.  

In terms of design, the best political websites had a clean, simple design with layouts that were familiar and easy to navigate. They were also accessible

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Obama taps into online army

Obama taps into online army

by Dave Nyczepir / Nov 19 2012

The post-election data efforts of Obama for America have already begun. Obama Campaign Manager Jim Messina sent out an email late Sunday seeking feedback from thousands of supporters and volunteers—an email appeal that some on the left hope is an early push for greater institutional memory.  

After the 2008 election, one of the main criticisms of OFA was that the organization was left drifting, pushed aside by the need for the new

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The Buckeye State in Focus

by Chris Palko / Nov 16 2012

The somewhat shocking decline in Ohio turnout affected both Obama’s and Romney’s bases this election, but with Romney needing to erase the 262,000-vote margin that Obama had in 2008, there were simply not enough voters available for Romney to win.

Ohio was the state that commanded the most media attention from political observers during the presidential election. Unprecedented sums of money were spent.

Within the last two months

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It's never too soon to start fundraising

by Erik Nilsson / Nov 16 2012

With the elections only a couple of weeks past, we Republicans can still feel the sour taste of Gov. Romney's defeat and the triumph of a House victory. Luckily this is politics and there is no time to linger or morn. We have war chests to build for our next battle.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell was one of the first out of the fundraising gate and held a fundraiser for reelection on

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Where Super PACs will really thrive

Where Super PACs will really thrive

by Dave Nyczepir / Nov 14 2012

Now that the first full presidential cycle to feature big spending Super PACs is in the books, some strategists and donors are openly wondering how much influence the groups can wield going forward.

Did millionaire and billionaire donors really get their money’s worth? And can Super PACs make the same argument for relevance next cycle—specifically that spending millions in the TV ad war can truly make a difference on the national level?     

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Lessons from a nearly $1 billion TV campaign

Lessons from a nearly $1 billion TV campaign

by Dave Nyczepir / Nov 12 2012

The total cost of election 2012 could reach as high as $6 billion, obliterating the previous record. A good chunk of that money was spent on TV.      

On the airways, TV spending on the presidential contest reached close to $1 billion. According to a spending tally from SMG-Delta, the final TV ad spend total between the campaigns of President Obama, Mitt Romney and the outside groups supporting them was $984 million.
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The 5 stages of political loss and grief

The 5 stages of political loss and grief

by Erik Nilsson / Nov 08 2012

The 2012 election season is over, and we are beginning to look forward to 2014. For us Republicans, before we can really close out our 2012 cycle, we need to go through the five stages of political loss and grief before we can move forward.

1. Denial and isolation: This is the "that really didn't just happen, things were trending the right way, how did we not pick up even one

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10 things that mattered in 2012

10 things that mattered in 2012

by Dave Nyczepir / Nov 07 2012

1) The devil was in the demographics…: Most of the post-election buzz explaining why Mitt Romney lost has focused on the GOP’s inability to adapt to the nation’s changing demographics. Gone are the days of the George W. Bush coalition. White evangelicals aren’t enough to win anymore, and even when they were a force, Bush still had to win about 40 percent of the Hispanic vote in 2004.

Four years ago, McCain

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