Mike Spence

Mike serves on his local school board, and is Past President of the CA Republican Assembly.

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Today is actually: 201410230140Today is: 201410230140

FlashReport Weblog on California Politics

 
 

Time to Audit Victory '06

 

by Mike Spence - Los Angeles County (bio) (email)(print)

 
11-14-2006 9:56 am
Was Victory '06 a success? After over 20 million dollars spent that is an open question for me. I have my doubts. The Governor was on the way to victory long before the GOTV operation was needed. Maybe Poizner benefited. Although he really benifited from Bustamante.

First, I want to point out that I know something on this scale has not been tried before. I know many Victory '06 staffers. Many of them are great operatives. People can work hard and effectively in campaigns and still not achieve objectives. To be successful in the future requires us to take a hard look at some of these things. 

I admit to only knowing a few things. Turnout in GOP areas was lower than four years ago. Imagine that. A "GOP" Governor is winning by 17% and turnout is worse than when we lose by 5%. What gives?

There are definitely some outside factors at work. The National GOP collapse didn't help. The Governor's refusal to appear with or speak kindly about down ticket candidates was a factor. His message of a bigger bond debt and more nanny statism appealed to Dems, but not GOP voters. (His no new taxes of course appealed to GOP voters but was inconsistent with the rest of the message)

But what of Victory '06? I know out of 400 precincts in Eastern LA County only 11 were targeted for traditional GOTV. I know that some of the sheets for checking polls were in order by alphabetically by voters name and were never put in a consolidated form. 

I know in some places scripts never started emphasizing the down ticket until 4-6-weeks before the election, if at all.

I know church outreach died wandering in the desert. At the end only one staffer was left trying to get church people not necessarily  to vote, but to volunteer to make phone calls. One person in all of CA!

Don't get me started on door hangers. Ask Richad Pombo if door hangers should have federal candidates on them. (It wouldn't have saved him, but please). FEd candidates can be on them if the party raises and spends dollars properly.

If voters are demoralized, it is hard to drag them to the polls if you don't contact them. And it was hard. CRA's GOTV effort Through CRAVICTORYTEAM.com put boots on the ground in key races. We did do last minute church outreach. And it was hard. Then again we didn't have $20 million to spend either.

As BOE member Bill Leonard pointed out, his race is totally turnout driven. No advertising, large area and his numbers went down. He thinks we need a political audit of the CRP. I agree and let's start with Victory '06.
 
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Comments

Mike, you are right in calling for an audit. The fact is, Victory 06 appears to have been a complete bust. Arnold and Poizner would have won without it due to the weakness of their opponents. As far as GOTV, the major GOP counties in the state all turned out at less than 50%. That's pathetic.

The all-Arnold, all-the-time Victory 06 plan was doomed to failure as soon as it became apparent that Arnold's strategy was to run away from the Republican Party and the GOP ticket.

I believe the Party has an obligation to do its best to promote all of our candidates and endorsed measures. Sadly, and in spite of record spending, that did not happen in 2006.





Granted, this was a tough year for the GOP. But a more complete effort that focused on the tried and true live calls and door-knocking GOTV and that promoted our entire statewide slate, along with our endorsed propositions, might have made the difference for McPherson, McClintock, and Prop. 90.

I did three days of phone banking at Victory'06's office in West LA. We always told people to vote for the entire ticket. It was a great office and the staff there worked hard and inspired people to come and place calls. If more people were like Scott Broschart, (who managed the office) were in charge, I would like to believe that things may have been different.

Of course Arnold had coattails. He ran as a Democrat, and most of the Democrats got elected statewide.

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