Washington (CNN) – While new media tools such as Facebook and Twitter propelled Democrats to success during the 2008 campaign, Organizing for America is relying on a vintage technology this election cycle: the telephone.
OFA, the grassroots structure that grew out of President Obama’s presidential run that was folded into the Democratic National Committee, has partnered with MaestroConference, a social conferencing platform, to host 5,200 conference calls since March 2009, CNN has learned.
While conference calls are not a new organizational tool, OFA is utilizing new technology to make the phone a relevant political tool once again.
So what’s new?
Washington (CNN) - Democratic party officials say activists will be knocking on doors Saturday with the hope of registering scores of voters ahead of November's midterm elections.
Officials at Organizing for America, the grassroots structure of the 2008 Obama for President campaign that was folded into the Democratic National Committee, say their "Day of Action" includes volunteers holding door to door canvasses, setting up voter registration tables, and hosting phone banks to encourage people to commit to vote in November.
"In 2008, voter registration and turnout was key to our victory, with more than 15 million new voters entering the political process," said OFA Deputy Director Jeremy Bird, in a statement. "Now, in 2010, voter registration will be key to ensuring that Democratic candidates are successful and that President Obama has as many congressional allies as possible next year."
(CNN) – President Obama's political organization agrees with Vice President Joe Biden: "Health Reform is a BFD."
While using the four-letter word could land an elementary school kid in detention, Organizing for America is embracing it with the hope of raising some cash.
OFA, the president's political arm housed at the Democratic National Committee, is using Biden's now infamous phrase on a T-shirt to commemorate the signing of health care reform into law.
Donors who give at least $25 will receive "a limited edition 'Health Reform is a BFD' T-shirt in a super-soft, fine jersey (men's) or baby rib (women's) cotton fabric," according to a new fundraising page posted Wednesday on OFA's Web site.
A new interactive holiday video from Organizing for America, President Obama's political arm at the Democratic National Committee, lets viewers customize the on-screen holiday card "signed" by the president with their own name and choice of holiday greetings. (The messages are pre-selected by OFA, then chosen from a drop-down list. The name field is open.)
Washington (CNN) - The Democratic Party's fundraising off of Sarah Palin's "dangerous" book tour.
"Right now, Sarah Palin is on a highly publicized, nationwide book tour, attacking President Obama and his plan for health reform at every turn," wrote Organizing for America director Mitch Stewart in a message sent to supporters Friday.
"It's dangerous. Remember, this is the person who coined the term 'Death Panels' - and opened the flood gates for months of false attacks by special interests and partisan extremists. Whatever lie comes next will be widely covered by the media, then constantly echoed by right-wing attack groups and others who are trying to defeat reform.
The group, the president's political arm at the Democratic National Committee, set a goal of raising $500,000 over the next week "to help push back against Sarah Palin and her allies." OFA said the contributions will be used to respond to those attacks via ads, events, and phone banking congressional offices.
WASHINGTON (CNN) – President Obama's political operation is signaling a new call to arms, and is urging supporters to push back against vocal opponents who have dominated the recent congressional town hall meetings on health care.
"The same angry groups and right wing extremists we saw at rallies during last year's election are at it again," Mitch Stewart, director of Organizing for America, says in a nearly two-minute long video that will be emailed Friday afternoon to Obama supporters.
"They are spreading lies about the president's plan and with the encouragement of Republican leaders, and funding from their special interest allies they are disrupting pubic events. They are trying to drown out public discourse and legitimate conversation on this issue in communities all across America."
The video shows Stewart sitting in an office and cuts to images of protesters disrupting town halls. Stewart goes on to instruct supporters to visit a Web site to "sign up for events in your community and contact your representatives."
At the conclusion of the 2008 election, Obama transitioned his presidential campaign into OFA, which is now a project of the Democratic National Committee.
WASHINGTON (CNN) – President Obama’s political team is expanding its ad buy pressuring lawmakers to support the administration’s health care plan, adding 15 more markets as the president’s August target date for congressional passage of the package nears.
The 30-second TV ad from Organizing for America, the president’s political arm at the Democratic National Committee, is already airing in eight states - Arkansas, Indiana, Florida, Louisiana, Maine, North Dakota, Nebraska, and Ohio – represented by moderate Republican and conservative Democratic senators the White House needs on board for any vote on the massive health care overhaul.
"It's Time" will now begin airing in the Savannah, Palm Springs, Seattle, Nashville, Bloomington, Sacramento, Salt Lake City, New Orleans, Pittsburgh, Charlotte, Little Rock, Columbus, Marquette, Grand Rapids and Medford media markets, according to the DNC – all areas within districts represented by members of Congress who are viewed as swing votes on a key committee weighing the president’s plan. Four-fifths of those lawmakers are Democrats.
The ad - which features ordinary Americans relating health insurance difficulties they’ve faced - does not mention legislators by name, but does ask viewers to call Capitol Hill, and provides the telephone number for the U.S. Capitol switchboard.
(CNN) – President Obama’s political operation will begin running television ads Wednesday targeting fellow Democrats and centrist Republicans urging them to support the president’s call for health care reform this year.
The 30-second TV commercial will run in eight states: Arkansas, Indiana, Florida, Louisiana, Maine, North Dakota, Nebraska, and Ohio for two weeks, according to a preview of the ad provided to CNN by Obama’s Organizing for America (OFA).
The commercial, which features five people discussing health care problems, will also run on national cable television, in Washington, D.C., and online, according to OFA, which is now housed at the Democratic National Committee.
WASHINGTON (CNN) - National Democrats launched a national effort Friday to rally support for Judge Sonia Sotomayor, who President Obama introduced this week as his nominee for the Supreme Court.
Organizing for America, Obama's campaign organization which is now an arm of the Democratic National Committee, e-mailed its 13 million supporters a warning that "our opponents will try to play politics with Judge Sotomayor's nomination, and it's up to us to help get out the facts and show the public - and key decision-makers - how much support she really has."
Mitch Stewart, the director of OFA and author of the e-mail, suggested supporters write a letter to the editor of the local newspaper or call their senators to express support for Sotomayor.
OFA is offering supporters downloadable pictures of Sotomayor to be placed on social networking Web sites like Facebook, and posters to show support for Obama's nominee. It has also created a Web page titled "Stand With Sotomayor" to serve as the platform for this campaign.
WASHINGTON (CNN) - Organizing for America, President Obama's political organization, dispatched a corps of volunteers to Capitol Hill on Wednesday to hand-deliver to members of Congress hundreds of thousands of citizen pledges signed in of support for the president's budget initiatives.
The organization boasted in a series of press releases that 642,000 "pledges" had been collected during a highly publicized national canvassing effort. The pledges were then printed out at Democratic National Committee headquarters and taken over to congressional offices.
But do 642,000 pieces of paper mean that 642,000 actual people signed up to back the president's budget? Not quite.
According to OFA spokesperson Natalie Wyeth, "some people signed more than one for their members of Congress."
Though she maintained there were 642,000 pledges distributed on the Hill, she pegged the number of people who actually signed the pledges as significantly fewer.
"It's at least 214,000," Wyeth said in an e-mail. An initial 100,000 signatures were gathered during OFA's nationwide canvass on March 21, she said, and "tens of thousands more" were collected online and in a series of smaller canvasses over a two-week period.