June 17th, 2008
04:10 PM ET
6 years ago

Pro-Obama groups defy senator's wishes

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(CNN)— Pro-Obama groups are ignoring calls by the Illinois senator for independent groups to direct their resources to the national party and his campaign instead of acting independently on his behalf, planning a massive operation aimed at boosting Democratic turnout in November.

PowerPAC.org Chairman Steve Phillips wrote in a Huffington Post piece Tuesday that progressive groups expect to raise $100 million to further mobilize voters this cycle, including a $10 million voter drive targeting black voters in states like Virginia, North Carolina, Mississippi and Georgia – all states that typically support Republican presidential candidates that the Obama campaign thinks he can win this fall.

“Contrary to earlier reports about the demise of independent efforts this cycle, the work in 2008 will be robust, vibrant, and more coordinated than ever before,” Phillips says.

His group plans to combine efforts with other grassroots organizations like the NAACP and National Coalition on Black Civic Participation to increase minority turnout, and coordinate with the America Votes coalition, which includes than 30 major progressive groups representing millions of members nationwide.

Earlier this year, Obama asked independent groups to direct their resources to the Democratic National Committee and his own campaign rather than run ads on his behalf. But unions and other progressive groups have traditionally taken the lead in get out the vote operations of the kind Phillip described in his piece Tuesday.

Phillips predicted the groups would spend at least $100 million on their efforts.


Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama
soundoff (207 Responses)
  1. Women In California for Obama

    I don't know about this one...doubtful.

    June 17, 2008 03:39 pm at 3:39 pm |
  2. Swiftboats?

    PDX, who would you elect if you know some much about American Politics?

    June 17, 2008 03:39 pm at 3:39 pm |
  3. Marc PDX

    Biff Biffington: thank you for blaming Obama's shortcomings on the republicans. LOL! I knew that would start happening pretty soon. I'm sure we'll be seeing that everyday shortly...

    NObama N'08

    June 17, 2008 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  4. Brian Knoxville TN

    Anyone interested in dividing the Democratic party and earning $$ in the process, email me.

    All you have to do is pose as a Hillary supporter and basically slander Obama and his camp. Don't forget to repeat that 'the DNC stole the election from Hillary'. End the message with a threat to vote for McCain.

    Rates start at $5 per post. Email me at puma_turncoat @ gop.com

    June 17, 2008 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  5. Craig- Easton, PA

    What scares me about some of these independent groups is that they tend to run ads that are so far over the top and try to show how clever they can be, but really serve only to reinforce the GOP message that Dems are left wing extremists. They could well scare off the centrists and independents needed to actually win.

    June 17, 2008 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  6. Carol, WI

    I agree with Obama trying to reigh in the special interest groups to ensure the message that goes out is a positive one, but I think the GOTV efforts could certainly be individually funded by these organizations because that is a positive thing to do.

    On a separate note, CNN has become the Jerry Srpinger of the MSM. They post some very irrelevant information just to solicit feedback in the form of comments, they supposedly moderate these comments, but they allow some of the most disrespecful comments to appear. You do not need to register to comment here, so no one knows the party affiliation of the one commenting and people get offended by so-called supporters of the candidates, but can you really tell if the comment that offends you is made by a real supporter of a candidate or someone just trying to stoke the flames here?

    I got away from CNN for one week and was amazed how much happier I was with the other political dialogue going on other sites. Some of you are so angry and bitter (from both sides), you need a break from this circus of CNN comments. I pretty much just read them for fun now because I get the feeling people here aren't looking for a good debate on the issues, they are clinging to the primary fight which is now over.

    June 17, 2008 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  7. Kenneth

    To MD.
    No one stole anything from Hillary it was her campaign staff that cost
    her the election not the DNC or Obama. Please get your head from the ground and look up skyward toward 08.Election are won when everyone is on the same page to Powerpac .org you will better results if you will listen to Obama wnd run a joint effort.

    June 17, 2008 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  8. Rachel

    Marc PDX says "He can't even control his own campaign."

    Um, did you even read the article? It is not his campaign. These are independent groups.

    June 17, 2008 03:47 pm at 3:47 pm |
  9. Robert in Toronto,ON

    I like the idea of Obama taking a stance against this kind of politics, and even understand the reasoning behind his choice. When you have independant parties making statements on your behalf it can be misintrepreted as if these words or actions are your own (I think Obama learned that lesson well when a certain Pastor shot his mouth off and people even up till today still think that's how Obama thinks!)

    So he feels if he can control the message, it will be his. That's all fine, but at the same time this is a dog fight...and if you can get some help on those battle lines (like helping drive up registration) I don't see a problem with that. Just keep an eye out is what I would suggest.

    June 17, 2008 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  10. carlo

    I almost think the PAC's should carry on for Obama. The smears against him are getting ugly, and he's too decent of a human being to really go low.

    June 17, 2008 03:52 pm at 3:52 pm |
  11. Bob

    Obama supporters are CRAZY!

    June 17, 2008 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  12. Independant Thinker

    Now the truely dirty politics begin!

    Democratic organizations like MoveOn.org have been have been feeding the public lies for several years now. The real question is "how outlandish will their lies be during this election"?

    June 17, 2008 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  13. Nia - AZ by way of MN

    It's a double edge sword. If the info is coming to the DNC and to the Obama camp then it can be controlled and remain consistant. Hopefully this independent group will keep it consistant.

    June 17, 2008 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  14. JimS.

    I'm glad both Obama and Hillary are so much more mature than some of their supporters.

    In contrast to the way some of these petty supporters on both sides feel, I'm sure Obama and Clinton like and respect each other. A nomination race is a dirty business, but it's over, time to let it go and move on. The candidates have– can you say the same thing of their supporters?

    June 17, 2008 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  15. Nicole in NE

    No one should vote based sloely on someone's race or gender. I vote on issues:

    Economy, environment, helping the suffering in our country, mending relations in the world, creating and keeping jobs for Americans, etc....

    That is WHY I VOTE Obama 08'

    June 17, 2008 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  16. Phil, FL

    I'm and Independent – will send my money to Obama – don't know who the others might give it to.

    Obama 08

    June 17, 2008 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  17. Drew, Central FL

    Just fyi Larry Sinclair. You, ahem, failed both lie detector tests back in February. Go crawl in a hole.

    527s, BO and DNC need to coordinate. It's that simple.

    June 17, 2008 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  18. TESAP

    ??? SO WHERE IS THE MONEY GOING TO THE DNC OR OBAMA CAMPAIGN???? EITHER WAY DEMS WIN, WHAT'S THE POINT THEY DEFIED HIM HE DID NOT TELL THEM TO DO IT???

    I STILL DONATE EVERY WEEK TO THE OBAMA CAMPAIGN........

    PS NO ONE STOLE THE ELECTION FROM CLINTON SHE LOST IT FAIR AND SQUARE...

    June 17, 2008 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  19. Brian Knoxville, TN

    So Senator Obama is trying to tell American citizens to stop using their resources to speak freely in our society and to just turn their resources over to him?

    Pelosi, Gore, Reid, Edwards, Dean, Brazile–all of you–don't you recognize power-grabbing and silencing of Americans' views when you see it. Have yo sold out so completely, or are you all really that incompetent?

    Well, if you won't do something, we average Americans and true Democrats will. The reign of Obama and Axelrod will end before it starts.

    You hear that Axelrod? I'm no Larry Sinclair who you can try to force into silence.

    Puma Democrat and true Democrat who will never give a dime to support the sleazy tactics of the Obama campaign and the DNC that it now lords over.

    June 17, 2008 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  20. Kenneth

    The primary season is over to powerpac the rule now is to coordinated with Obama and his efforts

    June 17, 2008 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  21. judi in NJ

    S.Boat: What a wonderful post! I loved it. (see below)

    "Millions Of People Organizing For The Good Of The Country? What A Wonderful Time To Be Alive!"

    June 17, 2008 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  22. Mark K

    Dear Marc PDX, The Independent 527s are a big problem which has made campaign finance reform impossible, but at least Obama can control what the Democratic Party does. McCain can't even stop the negative ads run by his own party (for example, the ads run by the Tennessee Republicans)

    June 17, 2008 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  23. TESAP

    MARC PDX...................... ????? HOW IS THIS WORST THAN BUSH???? USE LOGIC

    June 17, 2008 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  24. Heidi

    2 MD at 3:04

    Hillary who?

    Obama 08"

    June 17, 2008 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  25. Hillary Clinton

    I've thought it over. Vote for my friend, John McCain. Anyone is better than Obama. Believe me, I've seen the skeletons.

    June 17, 2008 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
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