March 19th, 2009
08:30 AM ET
4 years ago

Preston on Politics: GOP embraces new media

Patrick Ruffini, left, and David All are on the cutting edge of an evolving medium to connect with supporters.
Patrick Ruffini, left, and David All are on the cutting edge of an evolving medium to connect with supporters.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - As Republicans wrangle over the ideological direction of the party, a new generation of conservatives is reaching out to GOP activists and honing the use of a 21st century megaphone to promote Republican policy goals through new media networking tools.

Watch: Can the GOP catch up on tech?

Republicans received a wake-up call in 2008 after President Obama raised a historic sum of campaign cash and organized supporters like never before by mastering the power of the Internet.

Within days of losing the White House and additional seats in the House and Senate, prominent blogger and new media consultant Patrick Ruffini unveiled a Web site dedicated to helping restore the GOP to power.

The No. 1 priority listed on http://www.rebuildtheparty.com: "Winning the technology war with the Democrats."

Related: Liberal blogging in the era of Obama

"We kind of took a step back and said, 'Look, we're going to have a long debate over a number of years over where this party should go, where we should stand ideologically,' " Ruffini said. "But here's some basic steps that we can take now to re-engage our grassroots base and to rebuild our party infrastructure and to recruit new leaders so that when we have that ... unifying purpose ... we will be ready to go."

Ruffini and fellow blogger/new media consultant David All are on the cutting edge of a constantly evolving medium that includes long-form analysis through blogging to fast-paced snippets known as "tweets."

Full story


Filed under: GOP • Preston on Politics
soundoff (46 Responses)
  1. JediMasterMatt - Bethlehem, PA

    They just don't get it...its the MESSAGE of party first, exclusion, hate, and NO-compromises that is the problem with the GOP, not the 'method' of sending the message.

    March 19, 2009 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  2. Wynter

    um... can you spell... "disaster"?

    The GOP is out of it's depth here. The problem isn't that they don't use the latest technology to reach their members. It's that they have nothing worth saying to them. Their message is old, dry and flat out wrong. The Republican leadership is working off ancient concepts that don't work anymore. Get back to reality!

    The reason the Democrats have you on the ropes is simply that you have NO IDEAS! And putting your faces on more media outlets or your words in new technology formats just means your useless empty statements of fiction will reach the empty headed ranks of republicans a few hours earlier. So what?!

    The GOP is the equivalent of a funeral procession. Time to find some living people!

    March 19, 2009 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  3. Shane

    Tech has nothing to do with the Republicans' loss. Rather, it's how they've proven themselves to be thoroughly uncool in every conceivable way. They're cold, selfish, and narrow minded.

    March 19, 2009 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  4. Barbara NY

    Unless the message changes, I'm not interested.

    March 19, 2009 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  5. Steve in Las Vegas,NV

    If they have the technology good, but they now need a real message.

    Is that technology smoke signals??

    March 19, 2009 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  6. gl, Pittsburgh

    The republicans like the word WAR! That's the problem with republicans they like going to war with everybody and everything instead of coming up with ideas. This is not a war between the right and the left we all need to be working together not trying too out do each other.

    March 19, 2009 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  7. Indigo

    There is no reviving the republican party. I know they are trying hard right now, but it is not going to work. The Republicans have been leading us down the wrong path and lying about it for too long. The democrats can't be any worse. This latest lye they tell about wanting to restrict bonuses when just a month ago Mitch McConnell and a number of others were saying we need to keep the government out of the private sector's business. They seem to be trying to play everybody just to try to regain some traction. Well we (democrats) will make some mistakes along the way, but they will be honest mistakes as all human beings make. but we will have our eight years to straighten things out. To God Be The Glory God Bless president Obama.

    March 19, 2009 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  8. Greg, San Francisco, CA

    It's helpful if you use the new technology to broadcast actual IDEAS, not just your routine tired rhetoric of "NO".

    March 19, 2009 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  9. obama-mama

    How about just being yourselves, uh no that's not gonna work. Maybe they can call on the fairly odd parents for a miracle.

    March 19, 2009 12:27 pm at 12:27 pm |
  10. In Houston, TX

    The technology war? The next thing they are going to do is hire public speaking coaches so they can emmulate the way Obama masters his audience. (that one was free GOP)
    Here is the real problem and the reason why you are going to lose in 2010. You are not dealing with an uneducated un-informed electorate. People are listening to what you say and they are monitoring your job performance very closely. So, you can't say one thing and do another anymore, you will be fired.
    Stop using fear to promote your party. Avoid using the word fear all together. Stop concentrating on things people dislike. Hate is not the weapon you want to use here. Hate always loses to love and Hope will always conquer fear and your party is the party of hate and fear. Shed that image and your party may live. Don't do this and all of us will watch while your party dies in a slow agonizing paingful death

    March 19, 2009 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  11. is this the talking movies? wait not yet

    perhaps that brand new technology from Alexander Gram Bell, I heard he came up with a talkie device that you could hear someone on over distance

    the GOP is crashing fast, engulfed in flames

    March 19, 2009 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  12. ok

    That's great and all, but now try updating your IDEAS to fit this century, and then maybe you would have a chance.

    March 19, 2009 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  13. skeeve

    Ok.. so #1 priority is not rebuilding economy or reform health care... #1 priority for Republicans is "winning technological war"... Well, technology is cool but unless you straighten up your priorities there will be no wining – technology or no technology

    March 19, 2009 12:33 pm at 12:33 pm |
  14. Sniffit

    Using the interwebz to rant about "soshulizm" and rabble-rouse the militia-wannabes with a trumped-up 2nd Amendment scare doesn't make it sound less stupid, misinformed, purposefully misleading, partisan or hateful. Nor does Tweeting about tax cuts and trickel down economics suddenly reverse the 30 years of evidence we have that it doesn't work. Change the message, then broadcast it. The fact is, disseminating idiocy in a more efficient and effective manner will do MORE damage to the GOP, not less.

    March 19, 2009 12:35 pm at 12:35 pm |
  15. Carol

    It's not the messenger – it's the message.

    They can preach their anti-abortion, anti-gay, anti-freedom of choice, pro-Christian fundamentalist crap from every venue in the country...... I'm not buying it.

    March 19, 2009 12:36 pm at 12:36 pm |
  16. Tik Tik, Ev

    Just more of the same ... it's not the message that's wrong, nooooo, its the internet and the media and that not enough people heard us ... that's why the Republicans are toast for a long time

    March 19, 2009 12:39 pm at 12:39 pm |
  17. RJ Arizona

    Yea, let's all "beat the Democrats" or "win the war with them" rather than do what's best for the country. Good idea Repugs!!

    March 19, 2009 12:39 pm at 12:39 pm |
  18. Kevin

    Sad how the internet has been around for nearly two decades, and some republicans seem to only now be discovering this thing called 'The internets'.

    I like how the internet is made out to be the "new hip thing" even though it's been out for a while.

    March 19, 2009 12:44 pm at 12:44 pm |
  19. Jilli

    That's the gop for you – looking for the easy way.

    Psst...here's a tip for you – it wasn't just the technology that helped Obama raise a "historic sum of campaign cash" – it was the candidate and what he stood to deliver.

    If the gop sticks with the same tired old positions on the issues all the super technology in the world isn't going to help.

    It's not the messenger it's the message that needs tweaking.

    March 19, 2009 12:44 pm at 12:44 pm |
  20. Mel

    lol. It only took them getting soundly trounced for them to realize they have to join the 21st century. How amusing.

    Sorry, too little too late.

    March 19, 2009 12:45 pm at 12:45 pm |
  21. Mel

    Why is it that the Repugs are always at "war" with people? Last I looked, war was a bad thing. These people need to stop behaving like children, and start actually listening to what everyone has been saying to them over and over and over again. Times have changed, its time they change with it.

    March 19, 2009 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
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