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Down to the Ground


I know people were a bit freaked out by the new Q-Poll this morning that only showed Lamont 6 points ahead of Lieberman but I agree with Kos —  since most of the internal polling showed the race much closer, the Q-Poll giving Lamont a 13 point lead was probably an outlier.

Still, it is all going to come down to GOTV.  It is going to be a battle in the field like no other. Whoever gets their people to the polls will win.  You can phone bank (through MoveOn ), you can contact one of the Lamont field offices to volunteer or you can just show up and they will put you to work.  You’re going to want to say that you had a hand in the outcome of this race.  More info here . We’ll probably do some kind of compliation of people’s stories and photos about volunteering after this is all over, and you can’t contribute it you didn’t take part now can you.

Joe has obscene gobs of money he is throwing out on the street, but the Lamont people got an earlier start.  Their GOTV effort is being run by experienced Connecticut locals, unlike the Lieberman effort being run by the DC consultants.  Let’s hope the consultants deliver the reliably inept service they have for the past decade.  Steve Gilliard seems to think it is so:

Lieberman is a typical boomer, he wants to ossify the past as some kind of character testimonial, but he doesn’t want to deal with the present in any sort of intelligent way. When questioned on his go along, get along attitude, he talks in vague terms about the good he’s done. He never apologized for not grilling Michael Brown on his qualifications. Like people would forget that.

But most telling about the Lieberman campaign among the negroes is that it is vastly out of date and heavy handed. He hired kids, he hired outside field workers, he didn’t pay back the loyal Democratic workers who saved his ass over and over. When he humiliated that New Haven alderman without a second thought, I knew his campaign was full of shit.

Now, supposedly a political neophyte, Lamont reached out to people who had a clue. Alexis McGill is one of those people you don’t hear about in DC, but is one of the people who can win elections for you. She reaches black voters and doesn’t do it by handing out money. She goes to the clubs, the barber shops, the social centers of black life beyond the church, and hired local persuaders for her street teams

If you get someone who can walk into a couple of barber shops, talk to the people and get listened to, that’s better than buying some minister. They put on a nice show, but people don’t get their political advice from them. This isn’t 1964. McGill, who ran Vote or Die, knows how to communicate in the visual language of younger voters. She also knows how to reach their parents.

Lieberman got more people, but I think Lamont got the persuaders. The community leaders who can make a pitch and get heard.

There will be many stories written about the outcome of this race and how it was run on both sides, but I don’t think a lot of people realize that this is Centralized DC Power vs. 50 State Strategy in action.  Watching how this all plays out should be very interesting on a lot of levels.  

Meanwhile, over at the DNC Tracy Jean is counting down the days until the November election in her "100 Actions in  100 days" column.  Please take a minute to bookmark it and check it daily, and yes, take action.

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Jane Hamsher

Jane Hamsher

Jane is the founder of Her work has also appeared on the Huffington Post, Alternet and The American Prospect. She’s the author of the best selling book Killer Instinct and has produced such films Natural Born Killers and Permanent Midnight. She lives in Washington DC.
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