Skip to main content

View Diary: Texas, Texas, and more Texas (278 comments)

Comment Preferences

  •  Rebuilding State Dem Ptys: Obama is the New Dean (0+ / 0-)

    The best thing about Obama's campaign is that it is rebuilding the State Dem Parties and this will be huge for future success for US House, Senate and State campaigns. I now live in Texas, so I am very interested in the re-building his organization can do here.

    I know from experience that a presidential candidate’s organization can do wonders to rebuild a state party because I lived in NH in 2003/2004 and I was a part of it. In 03, I was moved by Howard Dean to join his Presidential Campaign as a Volunteer - I became a city co-chair (what Obama's folks are calling precinct captains). We would have state and regional organizational meetings and hundreds of people would show up (in a state of 1.2 mil) and almost all my fellow Dean volunteers (aka Deaniacs) were like me, completely new to politics.

    Like Obama volunteers today, in the 04 Dean campaign, we did the same kinds of bottom-up organization and actions - held organizing meetings in our homes, helped walk and phone the voter lists from our homes, etc... Dean didn't win in NH and he didn’t have the $ to extend this organization to other states, but the positive impact to the NH State Dem Pty lasted.

    Understand that at the time, the NH Dem Pty was a typical Dem dinosaur operation and had been loosing state-wide elections for generations with occasional wins from Dem moderates like Jeanne Shaheen. The Dem party needed new people and ideas. Most of us who volunteered for Dean stayed involved in NH Dem politics and many of us ran for NH state offices in 2004.

    The efforts of ex-Deaniacs paid off in the Fall elections of 2004: John Lynch, who was one of DFA's 1st endorsements (DFA is Dean's organization), beat the incumbent Republican governor, Kerry won NH which Gore lost in 2000, and Dems won a sizable number of state house seats. Many ex-Deaniacs organized for Lynch and Kerry and almost all the new state house wins were ex-Deaniacs.

    In 2006, the Democratic Party took over New Hampshire government top to bottom and turned the state Blue for at least the next generation. The role of ex-Deaniacs was essential - one ex-Dean City captain won a surprise victory for a US house seat.

    Last year, I moved back to Texas and over the past few weeks, I am seeing a very familiar pattern. This time it is the Obama campaign who is rebuilding an effective Dem organization here where an ineffectual Dem party Dinosaur exists today. Based on what I saw in NH, I predict within 1 election cycle Dems will see significant gains in Texas, maybe winning a US senate seat - and within 2 election cycles, the Dems will win one or both state houses and maybe the governorship.

    This isn’t just a dream - I think the Obama organization's legacy could do wonders to make the Texas Dem Party a competitor again.

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site