In 2006, the netroots made its mark in Idaho by helping to make Larry Grant competitive in his race for the state's 1st Congressional district. In fact, we (the national netroots and, more importantly, the vibrant Idaho blogosphere) made the race so competitive, the GOP was forced to send Dick Cheney to Idaho to campaign for Sali. Forcing the GOP to bring out the big guns, and spend a lot of money, in one of the most reliably Republican districts in the country wasn't as good as a win, but it sure felt great.
The netroots/Idaho Dem love affair continues in '08, and is getting what will prove to be a very fun kick-off on March 1, when Markos will be giving the keynote address at the Democrats' annual Frank Church banquet. The state party's executive director, John Foster, wanted Markos for this event because he recognizes that one of the keys to bringing back a strong grassroots Democratic movement in Idaho means going viral, and he's asking for our help. Here's his message to Kossacks.
Some people call it the Schweitzer Model. Other people call it the Colorado Model. Whatever you call it, the idea of combining western values, laid-back populism and ultra-organized grassroots fieldwork into a winning strategy is a new one for many Democrats. But not in Idaho. It’s what we did when we won in the 50s, 60s, 70s, 80s, 90s and it’s what we’re going to do to win in 2008.
But for Idaho Democrats, life is this simple: We just want to win.
That means we’re willing to try new things (like bringing in "some blogger" to be the keynote speaker at our annual banquet.) It means making fewer phone calls, sending less mail and knocking on a whole lot more doors. It means working with the blogosphere. It means being able to move quickly. And it means having an army, a machine, that can out work the other side.
But getting there will take money. Your money. We’d love to show folks in Idaho just how important our races have become to a national audience. That’s why we’re asking Kossacks to collectively become a title sponsor of our 2008 Frank Church Banquet, where Markos will be our keynote speaker. Oh, and every penny we raise through our special ActBlue page, set up specifically for all of you, will go toward our 2008 training budget so our grassroots activists can receive one-on-one assistance from our field directors.
Please help. After all, what better message to send than to take back Idaho.
The Daily Kos community will be an official sponsor of the event, and not only will we be funding grassroots training, we'll be sponsoring our fellow bloggers--the money we provide will offset the ticket costs for Idaho's bloggers, allowing them to attend the banquet (and definitely spice this party up).
There's a lot of competition for your money, I know, but these are dollars that will definitely be stretched. Just $1,000 will provide a table at the banquet for the bloggers, and would buy, say, 30 tanks fo gas for the field directors to use to get around the huge state to provide activist training. The DNC's 50 State Strategy--and bless Howard Dean's heart for this--means that Idaho has field directors, but it doesn't provide for their expenses. We can help do that.
And we can give a boost to some of the progressive bloggers who have been working their butts off for, thus far, very little reward in one of the toughest states in the country. That would be the folks at Red State Rebels, 43rd State Blues, The Unequivocal Notion, at The Political Game, Fort Boise, F-Words, IdaBlue, The MountainGoat Report, IdahoRocks, Left Side of the Moon, just to name a handful (and not a few of them can also be counted as Kossacks).
If you have a few bucks to spare, consider sending them the Idaho Democrats' way, via this ActBlue page.