April 2nd, 2009
10:10 AM ET
14 years ago

Fuzzy math in Organizing for America's pledge drive

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/04/02/art.getty.capitol.cherry.jpg caption="Organizing for America dispatched a corps of volunteers to Capitol Hill on Wednesday."]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.

Filed under: OFA
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