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Update [2009-8-27 15:34:58 by hekebolos]: check out this from the Atlantic.  Summarizes the impact of ActBlue on the movement and puts the money into perspective.

First, let me be clear:  I don't work for ActBlue.  I just worship them.

Just kidding.  But all kidding aside, something incredible just happened:  ActBlue just passed the $100 million barrier for contributions in its existence!

I'm sure most of us who read and write on this site have used ActBlue to make contributions to our favorite candidates and causes.  I think we're so close to it, so used to it, that we've lost a bit of touch about exactly what ActBlue means to our movement.  So I'm going to recap that for you a little bit below the fold.

Intro

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First, from their news release:

Since Congress recessed in early August, we've all seen the ways in which lobbyists and GOP agitators can distort our political discourse, turning it away from the needs of ordinary Americans with big money and manufactured controversy.

When we founded ActBlue is 2004, we did so with the explicit goal of providing every Democrat with a way to change that dynamic. And to underscore our commitment to that goal, we chose to fund our operations through tips and donations from our users--to be by Democrats and for Democrats.

Together, we've raised $100,000,000 for Democrats across all fifty states. When the annals of the Democratic Party are written, this will be a signal moment. The 700,000 of you who have donated through ActBlue are shaping the future of the Democratic Party.

...

And remember that you raised $100,000,000 with a median contribution of only $50. Fifty dollars to take back Congress. Fifty dollars to overcome GOP obstruction in Minnesota. Fifty dollars to support marriage equality, and fifty dollars to push for effective healthcare reform.

Now Al Franken has taken his seat in Washington D.C., and you're a part of that story. When Maine stands up to defend marriage equality and a healthcare reform bill with a strong public option passes in the House of Representatives, you'll be a part of those stories too.

Think about that.  Since June of 2004, over $100 million dollars raised, in an average of $50 increments--that's grassroots power writ large.

But it's not just about the totals, it's about the capabilities that ActBlue gives us.  Do you think we would have been able to raise over $400,000 in 10 days for progressives who supported the public option without ActBlue? No.  Would I have been able to do a small-dollar fundraiser for Darcy Burner in Los Angeles last year without the event organizing tools available through ActBlue? No.  Would Elwyn Tinklenberg have been able to get $100,000 online in one day alone in response to Michelle Bachmann's epic act of crazy if it weren't for ActBlue? No.

And these three examples are just ones that I was involved in, to say nothing of the way that ActBlue has facilitated fundraising not just for candidates, for for Progressive PACs and Democratic Clubs across the country.

And did I mention, they're great people?  If you're ever met the people at ActBlue that I know--people like Erin Hill, or KT, or Jeremy Woodburn--you'd know.

ActBlue gives us an institutional advantage that the right can't match.  And it's time to give them a present to commemorate their $100,000,000 achievement:

A $15 recurring contribution to ActBlue.

What they've done for our movement is immeasurable, and we'd be making a mistake to take them for granted.

Extended (Optional)

Originally posted to Dante Atkins: the author formerly known as hekebolos on Thu Aug 27, 2009 at 11:43 AM PDT.

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