Obama campaign working to recruit the grass roots
July 15th, 2011
07:38 PM ET
9 years ago

Obama campaign working to recruit the grass roots

Washington (CNN) - On Saturday, the Obama campaign is hosting about 1,000 events across the country as it tries to enlarge its base of grass-roots activists for the 2012 presidential campaign. A major priority for the Obama team has been to reactivate its network of supporters who were considered key to its 2008 victory.

"This weekend will be our campaign's single biggest organizing opportunity of the summer," wrote Jeremy Bird, the campaign's national field director, in an e-mail to activists.

About 1,500 summer organizers will lead efforts at voter registration, door-knocking and attending public events, asking people to sign petitions committing their support: "a massive day of activism" is how one campaign aide put it.

"One volunteer at a time, we're going to build the biggest grassroots network that politics has ever seen," Bird vowed.

The campaign said it registered thousands of voters at a similar event last month, enabling it to enlarge its list of possible volunteers.

The campaign also said it has 60 field offices up and running, although many of them were already set up for Organizing for America, the Democratic National Committee's grass-roots advocacy effort. Since the re-election announcement, a campaign emphasis has been to woo back activists who may have been frustrated with the administration's first term – either because of some promises not kept or because of some of the positions the president has taken – at house parties and other events.

Disclosing a record fundraising number for the quarter that ended June 30, campaign officials this week pointed to the fact that 552,462 individuals contributed, and more than 260,000 of them had never given to the Obama team, they said.

"This should end any Washington chatter about our grass-roots supporters. They are back and energized," campaign manager Jim Messina said Wednesday.

One group of progressive activists, however, is sending a different message to the campaign. The Progressive Change Campaign Committee said Friday that it delivered about 200,000 petitions from people who had donated to the campaign, demanding that President Obama not support cuts to key entitlement programs such as Medicare and Social Security, or they would pull their support by not volunteering time or donating to the re-election campaign. The committee said the effort involved donors who had made more than $17 million in donations and volunteered more than 2.6 million hours to the 2008 campaign.

Some of those who delivered the petitions to the campaign's headquarters told the Chicago Tribune they would still vote for the president but wanted to send a message.

Filed under: 2012 • President Obama
soundoff (16 Responses)
  1. MAC

    It is too bad Obama cannot get 12 trillion dollars ( the latest CBO estimate for his budget debt over the next 10 years) donated to pay for his budget spending debt.

    July 15, 2011 07:43 pm at 7:43 pm |
  2. The Obama Recession Continues Unabated, Obama Depression on the way

    I'm sure many that voted for Obama in 2008 are now unemployed and remain unemployed thanks to Obama. The smart ones will know better than to be conned a second time into voting for a economically clueless non-leader like Obama. The dumb ones will of course continue to support this failure of a president. MOst are likely federal government dependents and union members that get their payback from the Democrats.

    July 15, 2011 07:58 pm at 7:58 pm |
  3. B

    He is getting support because People want the Truth and are feed-up with The Republicans Lies and stopping ANY progress on Critical decisions that need to be made !

    He will win in 2012 because people believe in his honesty and progress on digging us out of the "Bush Black Hole"..

    July 15, 2011 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  4. terry,va

    Grass roots meaning the Acorn thugs, Black Panthers and all the homeles he can get on buses to take to the polls. Not this time Obummie !!!

    July 15, 2011 08:52 pm at 8:52 pm |
  5. ABM

    IF the tea party can do it then our President WILL do it. I hope he wipes the floor with the GOP in 2012. Since the GOP does not want to listen to the american people then I will go with the Dems this time.

    July 15, 2011 08:59 pm at 8:59 pm |
  6. Sank

    Grass roots isnt that his AAs. Well it's not enough. Goodnye Obama you moron.

    July 15, 2011 09:27 pm at 9:27 pm |
  7. maikl

    America, you go crazy . How anybody can even think to vote for this man. I don't understand .

    July 15, 2011 11:09 pm at 11:09 pm |
  8. Richard

    If this man worked as hard (not spending like he normally does) cutting the deficit as he does campaigning we would be in good shape! He promised to "cut unnecessary spending, go line by line in the budget, bring it into the sunlight" It was a promise he never intended to keep! What a shame that we were hoodwinked!

    July 15, 2011 11:28 pm at 11:28 pm |
  9. Just As I Thought

    Have you ever noticed how none of these "grassroots supporters" & White House personel seem to never be in the same area together @ one time?
    The reason is; since they all have "ever-growing"Pinochio noses......they couldn't navigate w/out "breaking it off" in one another!

    July 15, 2011 11:32 pm at 11:32 pm |
  10. LegendRx

    Go get-em tiger!

    July 16, 2011 12:02 am at 12:02 am |
  11. Boo Hoo Baynor

    We are so blessed to have a compassionate, handsome and intelligent President on our side. Hooray!!!
    Obama 2012! 2016 !! 2020!!!

    July 16, 2011 01:15 am at 1:15 am |
  12. Palin Power

    Obozo is destined to lose and be a 1 term EPIC FAIL! He will lose to Sarah Palin in 2012. This is all part of God's Great and Grand Plan! God set Obozo up with this whole mess knowing that he will fail. When Her Chosen One Sarah Palin becomes our next and Greatest President, God will help Palin make everything great again. We will have a booming economy and greater prosperity under President Palin for 8 great years. Unemployment and the national debt will be down to ZERO and President Palin will create greater surpluses than Clinton with less taxes than Dubya.

    July 16, 2011 01:43 am at 1:43 am |
  13. diridi

    83% of Americans want Bush's tax cuts making more than 250k need to expire, that means, Americans want clearly to tax those making more than 250k or more, need to be taxed. So that we can "Generate" Revenue. Idiots, GOP listen to Americans. Time to raise Debt Ceiling. Eric Cantor, do not be idiot. o.k, Obama, be stern, and tough. I shall send you some more money for your re-election in 2012. We need you more than you need us. Be standing for poor, elderly, and needy without color basis. Stringent immigration needed in nation. India guys are cheating on social security. Watch out. God bless you.....Obama2012....

    July 16, 2011 07:48 am at 7:48 am |
  14. Ed

    We need to have a law for a balanced budget and term limits befroe we can get serious about any spending cuts.

    That's what the voters want no more taxes and out of controled spending to stop.

    All the polls going around nobody ask me and what I want just asking the people they already know what kind of answers they will get.

    Wake up and vote anyone out who will not pass term limits and a balanced budget.

    Smaller government and less spending will create more jobs not more government jobs.

    July 16, 2011 07:54 am at 7:54 am |
  15. Martha in CF

    Go get em President Obama. You are doing a great job!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    July 16, 2011 08:41 am at 8:41 am |
  16. WiredwierdinSF

    Obamas "grass roots" are the people who don't pay taxes, drug addicts, lazy welfare frauds, corrupt union bosses, those who because of their poor education by the NEA cannot possibly think for themselves. Obama's people. The non productive wasteoids.

    July 16, 2011 09:41 am at 9:41 am |