campaigns

When Talk Isn't Cheap: LI Campaign Communications Workshops Valuable Tool In Messaging

A lot of conservatives these days talk a lot about our country's problems and what to do about it. It always comes down to electing winning the battle of ideas by framing the issues and educating the electorate so we can elect the right people and/or getting the people already in to feel the heat. But talk is . . . well . . . you know what they say. But it doesn't have to be. Our friends at Arlington-based The Leadership Institute, the leader in training conservatives for careers and activism in campaigns, grassroots organizations, think tanks and public policy organizations (such as The Family Foundation), government, journalism, media (new and old) and all things politics and public policy, has two more Campaign Communication Workshops scheduled in Virginia this summer (yes, summer lasts through September 21). It had such a great turnout of Family Foundation supporters  its last field school in August in Arlington, that it has a special offer for Family Foundation supporters who attend either of the next two: In Virginia Beach on September 11 and in Radford on September 18

Here's who should attend and what they will learn at these workshops:

» How to communicate your values and ideas with the public while connecting on a personal level with individual voters. You will learn how to develop and deliver a compelling positive message and how to handle negative information as well.

» Ideal attendees for these Campaign Communications Workshops are volunteers, community activists, elected or party officials, current or future candidates, and campaign managers.

» This half-day session includes the following lectures:

• Presenting a Compelling Message

• Direct Voter Contact — Door-to-Door

• Handling Negative Information

» As a bonus, the Radford Workshop will offer additional sessions on Phone Operations and Getting YOUR Vote Out for those attendees who may want a full day of training — at no additional charge.

The workshop instructors are experienced campaign professionals, and among the faculty is Morton Blackwell, one fo the founders of America's conservative movement (he was the youngest Goldwater delegate at the 1964 Republican National Convention), as well as the founder and president of the Leadership Institute (read more about his legendary career).

Registration for the workshops is $20.00 and includes a light continental breakfast. (Early registration is only $10.00.) To register online, visit www.LeadershipInstitute.org. For further information, contact Christopher Doss at CDoss@LIMail.us or (703) 247-2000.

Now, for that Special Offer to Family Foundation members and supporters. Talk doesn't have to be cheap and it won't once you learn the valuable tools, tactics and skills LI's pros will impart to you in the workshops. But the cost can be, if not cheap, let's say, less expensive: Use the promo code "liberty"when registering online or when calling or e-mailing. The Leadership Institute will be happy to give you a discount and a very worthwhile session in campaign communications that you will be able to use effectively for a lifetime.

The 10th Amendment Disconnect

I had the privilege of hearing Dr. Bob Holsworth (Virginia Tomorrow) speak Monday night about the recent elections. He is the best political analyst in Virginia in my opinion and his insights on campaigns and strategies never fail to enlighten. He said that one of the many aspects where the Creigh Deeds campaign (as well as the Wagner and Shannon campaigns) fell short was in its inability to respond to the federal issues — card check, cap-and-trade, nationalized health care — Republican Bob McDonnell repeatedly raised as not only an intrusion into Virginians' sovereignty, but as harmful to Virginians themselves —their prosperity, opportunity, way of life, health. In other words, upholding the 10th Amendment, which leaves to the states all powers not specifically delineated to the federal government.

Senator Deeds couldn't dis President Barack Obama, who historically carried Virginia last year, and turn off the liberal Democrat base and its newly energized voters, by opposing those signature liberal issues. So the best he could do was assert they had nothing to do with running the commonwealth. Dr. Holsworth said Deeds' inability to satisfactorily deal with this dynamic pleased no one — crucial independents, who broke overwhelmingly to the GOP, nor the base.

Who am I to disagree with Dr. Bob? But I want to add that it was more than that. Defending one's state against the onslaught of the federal leviathan is a constitutional charge. So it is a legitimate issue. But Senator Deeds, reflective of today's ingrained liberalism, at the very least couldn't respond to the issues because he doesn't understand the 10th Amendment. Doubtful. So that leaves the worst, but more likely, case — a total disregard for it. When state politicians become too comfortable accepting mandates and force-fed programs from Washington, which stunt states from their roles as democratic laboratories and distinctly different places to live, they deserve to lose. Indeed, federal issues always have and always will be integral to state issues because the constitutional relationship of states to the national government demands it.  

Post Poll: Who Is Bob McDonnell And Why Is He Winning?

The Washington Post poll on the statewide races is out this afternoon, showing the three Republican candidates with rather commanding leads just a few weeks before election day. I'll leave the chest pumping and panicked spinning to the campaigns. But as someone who is fascinated by the media and rather enjoys the give-and-take we have with some of our friends in the capitol press corps, the Post article really fascinates me.

There is not a single line in the entire article about why Bob McDonnell is winning. The entire article is about why Democrat Creigh Deeds is losing . . . amazing. It's like they are stunned and just can't write from the perspective of a Republican leading. The article goes so far as to include yet another quote from somebody who won't vote for McDonnell because of "the thesis." It's as if they think if they yell it a little louder people will care. Let it go. 

Anyway, I'm not one to bash the media in Virginia who follow the campaigns and the General Assembly. Honestly, I think most of them are very good journalists who have a very challenging job. Cynical, some are no doubt. Bias? Probably, at times. But overall, compared to the national media types I've dealt with, they're a good group. 

It really is too bad about the Post, though. Their reporters are incredibly smart and they do good journalism at times. But when Terry McAuliffe is calling them out for carrying water for Creigh Deeds, it's more than just sour grapes.

It's the truth.

A More Motley Crew Of Propagandists You'll Never Meet

I've been meaning to post this photo of the Right Wing Virginia Bloggers Cabal for a while now. Actually, this is a group photo of most of the bloggers in attendance at Lt. Governor Bill Bolling's Annual Bloggers Day At The Capitol, which was held the day of the Veto Session in April.

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Virginia's best and brightest bloggers with the Washington Equestrian Statue in Capitol Square as a backdrop. Majestically patriotic, huh? Can you pick out your friendly Admin?

It was a fantastic day complete with briefings from very informed sources, a superb Senate gallery introduction of us by Senator Ken Cuccinelli (R-37, Fairfax), great networking, and a wonderful lunch by the Project Virginia guys and dinner with the LG's staff at night. A lot of what we learned was very useful background information on the campaigns and policy which will be, or has already been used, here. All part of the extraordinary lengths we go to keep you ahead of the curve. A big sweep of the hat to Rick Sincere for the photo.

Virginia News Stand: April 7, 2009

It's April so that means three things in Virgilankingnia politics: Veto Session, Shad Planking and campaigns in full swing. They usually coincide to some (or large) degree. But there's something different this year:  Gubernatorial candidate Senator Creigh Deeds (D-25, Bath) is avoiding the Shad Planking. That's almost unheard of for a statewide candidate. Who knows? If he wins the governorship, maybe it'll start a trend. Meanwhile, Governor Tim Kaine faces veto override threats on several bills, including those dealing with the death penalty and accepting strings-attached "stimulus" money for extended unemployment insurance — paid for by tax increases on business, since the fees it pays into that program fund it.

In another state's news that may have national implications, Iowans are fighting back against the edict by its supreme court inventing a "right" to same-sex "marriage." Also, Newt Gingrich talks, albeit briefly, about his conversion to Catholicism. Finally, check out one legal organization's unique avenue to challenge the federal bailout to AIG. 

News:

Kaine's vetoes facing his foes (Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star)

Deeds Will Not Speak At Shad Planking (Washington Post Virginia Politics Blog)

Big money flows to Virginia race for governor (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

Deeds files petitions for Virginia governor's race (Norfolk Virginian-Pilot)

McDonnell calls for unity after leading ouster of party chairman (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

Rejected GOP Chief To Run Again in Va. (Washington Post)

Battle over bingo laws in Va. (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

National News:

Conservative Iowans fight to preserve traditional (OneNewsNow.com)

Does AIG Bailout Violate Establishment Cause? (OneNewsNow.com)

Gingrich tight-lipped on Catholic conversion (OneNewsNow.com)

Virginia News Stand: March 6, 2009

The Communications Department says he's ill today, so I've cobbled together a couple of interesting articles — or at least an interesting topic: internal strife within the Virginia GOP. Didn't say it was news, because RPV fratricide certainly is nothing new. Still, interesting, as always. Also, there's a link to an interview with Republican gubernatorial candidate Bob McDonnell via podcast at Bearing Drift. Worth the listen (at least read the summary). Something else of interest that is news concerning the gubernatorial campaign: For as much as liberal groups and Democrat candidates have been, and are, ahead of conservatives and Republicans in the adaptation of new media and technology to campaign effect, Bob McDonnell, according to the March issue of Richmond Magazine, is leading all three Dems in a Facebook supporters landslide with nearly 2,100 as of a few minutes ago (at RM's publication it was 1,700). Sorry, no Web links provided by RM, but we hope to have a scan next week.

News:

Va. GOP chief asked to leave (Washington Times)

Major Va. donor named new state GOP finance chief (Daily Press)

Podcast:

VPOD #52: Bob McDonnell, GOP gubernatorial candidate (Bearingdrift.com)

Polls:

For more substantive polling information than Facebook, there's a recent Rasmussen poll that shows McDonnell leading all three Democrats by significant margins, increasing his December lead over his nearest rival, Terry McAuliffe, who, apparently, has not recovered from liberal blog attacks prompted by not knowing who we are!

Election 2009: Virginia Governor Election — GOP's McDonnell Has Edge Over All Democrats In Virginia Governor's Race (Rasmussen Reports)

McDonnell takes early lead in poll (Pilot On Politics blog) 

Coincidentally, in New Jersey, the Republican gubernatorial candidate leads the incumbent, Democrat Machine Boss Governor Jon Corzine, by nine points, with Corzine's approval rating less than 40 percent.

Fairleigh Dickinson poll finds Corzine trailing Christie by 9 points (Newark Star-Ledger)