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We intend to win Georgia!

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That's what Howard Dean said to a very energetic crowd yesterday when the Register for Change tour rolled into Atlanta yesterday. I didn't take great notes, or great photos, but I want to share my thoughts because this was an exciting event. It happened about 6:00 pm in Midtown Atlanta as thick storm clouds rolled overhead, but there were still about 300 people (my estimate) who showed up to see our DNC chairman and the new Atlanta Obama headquarters.

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Earlier in the day, the tour had been in Savannah and Macon, where the tour drew crowds as well. Dean told us that Savannah exceeded its goal of registering voters, and maybe had even beat Atlanta. That would be great, because Saturday 1300 new voters were registered in Atlanta.

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I was impressed with the size of the crowd. It was bigger than the crowds that attend John McCain rallies that have McCain present. Dean talked about how this is the first time since 1992 that we have tried to win Georgia. He went on to talk about how the issues that affect and concern Georgians are the same ones that the Democratic party want to fix, and said he wants to come to Georgia and ask for our votes. I think that's going to work. He also mentioned that we are targeting evangelical voters because we can come together on important issues like poverty and healthcare. He didn't mention Jimmy Carter at this point as a guy who might help, but he could have.

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We had a couple of local pols also present, including mayor Shirley Franklin, state senator Nan Orrock, and my Congressman Hank Johnson. We also had some Hillary protesters, which I didn't understand. But Dean acknowledged the protesters and said that Hillary is a great person and a great Democrat who was going to help us campaigning and winning in November. Yeah party unity!

Finally, Dean talked about a study that the DNC had done in Virginia to find the most effective method of winning, and said that what we must do is go and talk to our neighbors and find out what issues concern them. With this information we can talk to them about Obama and the Democratic party and how voting blue is the right thing to do. He challenged us in Georgia to go out and and meet three times each with 25 neighbors, but then said to Mayor Franklin that that Democrats in Oregon were challenged to meet with 40 neighbors and wondered if Atlantans could beat that. Well, why not?

Georgia is going to be tough in November only because some people here are used to voting for Republicans. I am grateful that Obama and DNC want to turn that around this year and are trying to help us turn Georgia blue.

Originally posted to randorider on Sun Jul 27, 2008 at 06:33 PM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Put up a tip jar for the 50 state strategy (13+ / 0-)

    I love reading reports from the front lines

    Remember.  We do not have to win Georgia to succeed.  We just need to make it a little more blue.

    A little bit this year, more next, and a lot more after that.  The change we seek takes hard work and a lot of time.

    Numbers are like people . . . Torture them enough and they'll tell you anything.

    by Actuary4Change on Sun Jul 27, 2008 at 06:39:54 PM PDT

  •  Please put up a tip jar (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Woody, casperr, MeToo, SherriG, jlms qkw

    which is a comment with "tipjar" in the heading so we can say thank you for the diary and pictures.

    I enjoy diaries of this sort very much!  Thanks for sharing and reporting!

    Join us at Bookflurries: Bookchat on Wednesday nights 8:00 PM EST

    by cfk on Sun Jul 27, 2008 at 06:41:04 PM PDT

  •  Are these new registers (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    casperr, jlms qkw

    or retired R's that have changed with the new direction the Dems are taking- and by new I mean the return to working out real deals for health care and poverty?

    The day is coming when a single carrot, freshly observed, will set off a revolution. Paul Cezanne

    by MeToo on Sun Jul 27, 2008 at 06:41:07 PM PDT

    •  I'm not sure (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Woody, srkp23, mindoca, SherriG

      But I think the target here is people who either have not voted in the past, or who have voted so long ago that they are no longer on the rolls.

      We also have a crazy photo ID law here in Georgia, which Dean mentioned. In addition to registering voters we need take some of them to office where they can get the mandated photo ID.

  •  GoooooooAtlanta! (6+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    srkp23, mindoca, cfk, SherriG, aj2k, ElizabethAM

    Great news about the voter registration efforts there, and in Savannah.

    Put up a tip jar already!

    Your photos are great, BTW.

    I trust Barack Obama.

    by casperr on Sun Jul 27, 2008 at 06:42:04 PM PDT

  •  Even in Warner Robins... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mindoca, SherriG, randorider

    People are talking.  They're absolutely fed up with things, and in times like that, they open up their minds to things they never would have otherwise.  I hear more curious talk every day.

    Houston County was 65% Republican the past two elections.  The primary was 53/47.  A blue Georgia is very possible.

  •  Well... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    srkp23, SherriG, randorider

    that's just Peachy!

    It might be an uphill battle, but glad to see we're making the effort!

  •  The metropolitan Atlanta region is a trouble spot (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ray Radlein, srkp23

    for the Democrats. While Clayton, DeKalb, and Fulton counties are heavily Democratic, the rest of the 16-30 counties in the Atlanta region are heavily Republican,. The majority of the exurbs and suburbs of Atlanta are dark red. Counties like Cherokkee and Forsyth gave Bush 70% and 80% of the vote in 2000 and in 2004. Cobb and Gwenett are still heavily Republican. And they are growing at very fast rates.

    Obama needs to find a way to keep his losses down in northern Georgia and exurban/suburban Atlanta to have any chance of winning there. I just don't see how he can overcome the dark red tint of exurban/suburban Atlanta.  

    •  Cherokee (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      SherriG

      My part of Cherokee County remains so red that there frequently aren't even any Democratic candidates on the ballot anywhere (other than the federal and statewide races such as Governor, Senator, President, etc., obviously). We have had actual candidates for Congress (GA-6) in the last couple of elections, which has been movement in the right direction, of course.

      The interesting thing is that I was robo-polled on the phone a while back for the Sheriff's race (!) — a real poll at that, not a push-poll — and one of the automated questions was whether I would be voting for Obama or McCain.

      Wouldn't you love to see those internals? But, more to the point, why would they even be bothering to ask that question?


      "I play a street-wise pimp" — Al Gore

      by Ray Radlein on Sun Jul 27, 2008 at 07:15:18 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Who knows (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Ray Radlein, SherriG

        But I do know that Cherrokee and Forsyth counties put out punishing numbers in favor of Republicans--almost at the same level that Blacks vote Democratic.

        •  they do indeed (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Ray Radlein, mindoca, SherriG

          but we have a few republicans changing, maybe we can make it a few more.  If nothing else, if the state stays at or below 10%, the rethugs have to spend time and money shoring up the state.

          •  Yeah (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Ray Radlein, SherriG

            You're right about that, but we do have to do something to change the dark red tone of exurban and suburban Atlanta.

            •  its changing (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Ray Radlein, srkp23

              its not real apparent, but believe me, people are rethinking.  Not all will change, some will find a way to believe its democrats spending on welfare. Some will die racists.  But others, they look at the bank stocks tanking and banks failing, the car industry tanking, the job loss, the first question is almost always, how is your business doing.  Retirees are seeing their savings evaporate.  

              People are starting to question if they've been sold a bill of goods.   I think Obama is likely to tell them yes, you have, after the convention and when its down to the nitty gritty.  Then the question will be, does he have a better plan to sell them on.

    •  Enthusisam gap. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Ray Radlein, mindoca, SherriG

      I'm hoping lots of Rs just don't bother.

      Seul l'incrédule a droit au miracle. - Elias Canetti Road2DC

      by srkp23 on Sun Jul 27, 2008 at 08:23:47 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Gwinett... :-) n/t (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Ray Radlein

      "Nothing can stand in the way of the *power* of millions of voices calling for change" Obama

      by SherriG on Sun Jul 27, 2008 at 08:56:56 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Tipped and Rec'd for turning GA blue. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ray Radlein, SherriG, randorider

    After reading Wooten's column last week, I was hoping they would work to put GA in play.

    http://www.ajc.com/...

  •  Great Diary, thanks (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mindoca, SherriG, aj2k
  •  To Be Honest (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ray Radlein, srkp23, mindoca, randorider

    My neighborhood is pretty damned red (NW of Atlanta)  so I've been talking to my neighbors throughout the last 7 and a half years.  Most voted for Bush twice..like my sister did.  I know we've made some headway, it's good to be able to say that I haven't seen more than 2 or 3 McCain bumperstickers, so far. Four years ago there were thousands of Bush04 stickers, the damn things were everywhere. So you know, this time out, it wouldn't surprise me much if some of my neighbors either voted for Bob Barr, (Barack Obama?? Hey, you never know!) or just didn't vote at all.

    One good thing has come from harping on my friends and neighbors for the last many years..they are definitely paying alot more attention to the campaigns and the issues this time.

    "Nothing can stand in the way of the *power* of millions of voices calling for change" Obama

    by SherriG on Sun Jul 27, 2008 at 07:24:37 PM PDT

    •  I'm in Decatur (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Ray Radlein, srkp23, mindoca, SherriG

      and I see Kerry/Edwards stickers on a daily basis:)

    •  Go Bob Barr? (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Ray Radlein, Woody, mindoca, SherriG

      Bob Barr and I do not have a lot in common, but when he does something I agree with I have to say thanks. His running for president is surely going to help Obama. So I say, that is good.

      Howard Dean made the point that where we can work together with our opponents we should, and with Barr I think we have some common ground in areas like FISA. So to the extent that he wants to campaign on FISA that is great. I've been flamed before for suggesting that we work with our opponents on issues where we have common ground, but I'm sticking with it. If Bob Barr wants to campaign for president as an alternative to McCain for otherwise McCain voters, that is a good thing.

      I hear what you are saying about being in a red area of Georgia. Four years ago I lived in Smyrna and I was the only one in the neighborhood with a Kerry-Edwards bumper sticker. Now I'm in Decatur and I think an Obama sticker must be required. I don't go outside 285 too often, so I don't know what the atmosphere is out there now.

      •  Well (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Ray Radlein, mindoca, randorider

        Barr was at NN08..I'm not too sure how he was received though.  I often agreed with his editorial rants in the AJC blasting Bush re shredding the constitution, but beyond that no thanks.

        As for outside of 285, well, it's about what you'd expect, but getting a little better all the time.  Hell, nobody's keyed my car yet.

        "Nothing can stand in the way of the *power* of millions of voices calling for change" Obama

        by SherriG on Sun Jul 27, 2008 at 08:52:32 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Numbers on Dean's study (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Woody, mindoca, SherriG, randorider, jfromga

    I was there too and it was a great turnout, I also saw a lot of the same people from 2 weeks ago at the Obama campaign strategy meeting in downtown.

    I wanted to elaborate a little on the study randorider was talking about.  Dean told the crowd that they had 6 control groups, one that got robocalls, one got exposed to radio ads, etc.  He said that all of these techniques increased turnout by 1-2%.  Then he said that going door to door and speaking with the voters increased voter turnout by 12%.  So, obviously that's what is being pushed by the 'Register for Change' campaign.

  •  Barr! (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mindoca, SherriG, randorider, jfromga

    I'm still hopeful that Bob Barr can pull some points off mccain's total here  in november to help Obama to a win.  Somehow, based on Barr's recent columns in the loafer, I think he probably is too.

  •  Anyone in Dallas (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mindoca

    come this Saturday to the grassroots office in the South Side on Lamar building. Great place for an Obama office let me tell you, but anyway, come at 10:00a.m. and learn how to set up your own drive. My co-worker and I are trying to set one up soon and are working on the location. Go to www.obamadallas.com for details. Remember, we need to do this for Rick Noriega as well (www.ricknoriega.com)

    In times of universal deceit, telling the truth will be a revolutionary act. ~George Orwell

    by ElizabethAM on Sun Jul 27, 2008 at 08:09:22 PM PDT

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