Now there are quite a few Diaries out about this story, but I want to focus on how to use the Abramoff scandal to WIN in November.
The key is to use this moment to reframe the Abramoff Scandal narrative.
It has been about a gang of scamps ripping off casinos. Sort of an Oceans Eleven staring Jack, George, Karl, Grover, Ralph, Ed and the gang.
When that is the scandal narrative the Republicans win. The scandal gets no tractions because nobody cares if a casino is ripped off.
We need to change the narrative.
The Abramoff scandal is about forced sex, human trafficking and selling out ones values and principles for money and power
The framing that drives this home is Abramoff's work on the Commonwealth of North Mariana Islands (CNMI).
It was a proven strategy in Georgia. And now Charlie Brown is showing how this is a winning issue for Democrats this fall.
Learn how on the jump...
Some weeks ago, I posted a Diary, The Abramoff 64 + 34 Competitive Races = BIG GOP Trouble and new revelations about Rick Santorum made it The Abramoff 65.
In every one of these race the Republican candidate's links to Jack Abramoff makes him or her vulnerable to an attack for the assistance they gave Team Abramoff to fund and protect the system of sweatshops, human trafficking, force prostitution and forced abortion on the Commonwealth of North Mariana Islands (CNMI).
It is the fact that they actively and/or passively supported a system so at odds with their stated values that drives this point home to voters. Folks get that they sold their principles out for money and power. And the crimes, abuse and corruption on the CNMI are stomach turning.
The Abramoff/GOP/CNMI connection drives a wedge between Republicans and the conservative values based voters they have been bamboozling for years.
We need to exploit this and we need to do it now.
Fortunately there is already a road map on how to effectively use this issue. And there are Democratic candidates who are proving that it works.
Now I know that there are many campaigns and outside groups who are researching the Abramoff/GOP/CNMI connection and how they might use this issue in the final weeks of the campaign (I have been helping a number of them).
It is time for these folks to release their Jack bomb on the GOP.
I want to focus on two races where the issue is being use to hurt Republican candidates.
Two weeks ago Brown launched Doolittlefacts.org, a hard hitting Web site that documents the system of abuse on CNMI and John Doolittle's work to protect and fund that system. Each time Doolittle claims he wasn't involved, another document is added to the site proving the link.
The attack has Doolittle back on his heals. It is working. More folks in the District are joining Republicans for Brown. Many more are just becoming disgusted with Dishonest John and his cash skimming wife. The facts of the abuse on the CNMI have moved this out of the long-shot column and into the competitive column (last week the local press wrote: Dead heat for Doolittle).
Charlie Brown will win this race with our help.
I have to salute Charlie Brown. He has the courage and the deep sense of justice to use the Abramoff/GOP/CNMI connection as an issue in this campaign. In recent years I feel that we Democrats have been looking for principled leaders unafraid to call the GOP on their bullshit, leaders who will take the fight to the Republicans, leaders who are active, instead of reactive.
Another race where the Abramoff/GOP/CNMI connection is actively in play is down in the TX-04. In this race, Democrat Glenn Melancon is taking on the very corrupt and serial betrayer, Ralph Hall. For some time now they have been pointing to Hall's involvement in the Abramoff/GOP/CNMI scandal at the Web site, Ralph Hall of Shame.
A Texas congressman is denying charges he slandered a foreign sex slave at the behest of Jack Abramoff. But documents obtained by TPMmuckraker contradict the Republican's claims.
Glenn Melancon is showing how Democrats in races that most folks would write off as noncompetitive can use the Abramoff/GOP/CNMI scandal as a way to get attention and start the process to hold these weasels accountable. And if there is a Democratic wave in November we will need candidates like Glenn to pick up unexpected seats.
Please show Melancon some donation love this weekend. A bump in his fundraising around this issue would send a good signal to other races. (And I really hope he defeats Hall because Ralph is a serious dirtball).
On Wednesday, October 4th, Bill Moyers will broadcast his new PBS documentary, Capital Crimes. It is his return to investigative reporting and it is very, very good. (I have seen it). This broadcast is a tremendous opportunity for viewing parties and fundraising efforts for many campaigns. USE IT.
When combined with today's news about the Jack's White House visits, now is the time to let loose on this issue.
Another key is researching the connection and getting those links out to campaigns, media and voters. Here is another area where the Charlie Brown is leading the way. The effort is leading to stories like this one, Doolittle, rival duel on alleged abuses:
Rep. John Doolittle of Roseville and his Democratic challenger, former Air Force officer Charles Brown, are fighting an open battle over what the eight-term Republican lawmaker knew about the sex trade in distant lands -- and when he knew it.
Brown is framing the issues that are driving the race. Doolittle is being forced to meet Charlie on the issues that Brown is pushing. And when George W. Bush comes to raise money for Doolittle and Pombo next Tuesday, the Abramoff/GOP/CNMI scandal will frame the local coverage of his visit.
Today's news about Abramoff will help drive that narrative.
So will our donations to Charlie Brown.
I have been researching Abramoff since 1999. I have a lot of information to share. And there is more research that needs to be done. I have helped some campaigns. I would like to help more, but I need a hand.
I am in the DC/Baltimore area. Perhaps somebody could organize an Abramoff/GOP/CNMI scandal research Meet-up or some other way to share the load. Perhaps our work can crash the gates and get the DNC, DCCC and the DSCC to focus on how to use this research in the coming weeks.
It really is simple to use the crimes of CNMI as a tool to hold these weasels accountable.
It is a one-two punch:
1. The situation on CNMI was and is inhuman, corrupt, unAmerican and unChristian.
2. ______ actively worked with Jack Abramoff to fund and protect this system of abuse.
The Abramoff 65 is listed in the Tip Jar. Find a Democrat to support. Donate before September 30. And then send more in October. Volunteer. Get involved in the GOTV effort.
Unless we double our efforts and fight like hell, the GOP may win on November. We have to bring the fight to them everywhere.
Please do what you can. And then do some more. To win we need your time, money and energy. We need to fight hard and fight smart.
2006 is now. It is way past time to take our Country back.
Let's do this.