Active in 50…or is it 57?
I still haven’t figured out where those extra seven states that Barack Obama has claimed to visit are (perhaps he’s an adherent to the 1844 James K. Polk electoral slogan “54’40 or fight!”) but having modified his claim to the correct number of states, Obama claims to be ready to go in every one of them – all because he’s broken his promise to use public funds for his campaign:
Since we announced our decision not to accept taxpayer funds for the general election, tens of thousands of people like you have come forward to declare their independence from a broken system.
This decision frees us to build a movement of millions of people giving whatever they can afford to a campaign that is truly reforming the way our political process works.
It also frees us to take our campaign for change to parts of the country where Democratic presidential candidates haven’t spent too much time in the past.
Our first television ad of the general election season goes on the air today.
Sure, we’re on the air in places like Ohio and Florida, the typical battleground states. But we’re also on the air in North Dakota, Montana, and Alaska — places that have emerged as competitive because of the unprecedented grassroots energy supporting our campaign.
These ads are supporting a 50-state ground operation that is being built right now by staff, volunteers, and thousands of Obama Organizing Fellows.
Choosing not to accept these taxpayer funds was not an easy decision. I remain committed to fundamental campaign finance reform, and as president I will work to fix this broken system.
But we’re facing opponents who have become masters at gaming the broken system as it stands today — collecting money from Washington lobbyists, special interest PACs, and relying on so-called 527 groups that can take unlimited contributions to peddle lies and smears.
It’s not that hard to break a promise, Barack. Think of it as practice for if you do win. By the way, you are familiar with special interests like George Soros and Big Labor, aren’t you? Something tells me you’re not returning all that union money.
But let’s face facts here. Just like any other campaign, the Obama team is going to focus its resources on those states they have the best chance of swiping from the GOP column. While they bravely claim to be active in all 50 states, something tells me that not much attention will be paid to a solidly red state such as Utah, nor will Obama have to sweat too much to win here in Maryland (barring a colossal screw-up). When your primary votes in just two counties (Montgomery and PG, of course) more than equal the total GOP registration in the portions of Maryland which are the most Republican (the Eastern Shore and the four counties comprising Western Maryland) it’s not too difficult to place Maryland in the win column and move on to other states. (By the way, the actual numbers are 228,848 primary votes for Obama in Montgomery and PG counties vs. 220,551 registered Republicans in the 13 counties of the Eastern Shore and Western Maryland. We need to work on that.)
It’s the sad reality that we as Republicans face, one that says we’re at least a generation away from having much hope for more than a scant majority in the General Assembly. This is even true should 2010 bring a Reaganesque landslide for the Republicans in state elections. The liberal mindset in those big-government addled parts of the state is pretty strong and, like crack, it’s a tough addiction to counter. It’ll be even more difficult if we get early (and often) voting passed in this election.
In the meantime, our work needs to be in building a base of operations for the 2010 election. It means a strong show of support from those areas we already have GOP members of Congress. Would not a 60-40 win by Andy Harris send a message? This is OUR territory and we’re coming after you next, Martin O’Malley! Maybe we should turn a phrase from that 1844 slogan and declare as Republicans in the First and Sixth Districts that for 2008 it’s “60-40 AND fight!”
I plan on being the aggressor in this one, and I have a few tricks up my sleeve to help us win.
Crossposted on monoblogue.