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Blaine Richardson Leaves GOP, To Run As Independent
01-27-2014, 07:51 PM
Post: #31
RE: Blaine Richardson Leaves GOP, To Run As Independent
Roger,

While he might have been born and raised in the second district, he certainly projects the image of a carpetbagger. Rich guy from out of the district buys a home in the district to give the image that he is from the district; when in fact he has spent decades outside of the district and more identifies with folks in CD1.

Bruce is a nice guy, he was a pretty good State Treasurer, but from an objective view he is a carpetbagger.

Established in New England in the Year of our Lord 1648.
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01-27-2014, 08:08 PM
Post: #32
RE: Blaine Richardson Leaves GOP, To Run As Independent
Rich guy from out of the district buys a home in the district to give the image that he is from the district;

I think he is restoring his parents house to live in. Bruce has history in the district. Don't get me wrong, I like Blaine, but I really don't think he has what it takes to enter the cesspool of Washington.

Buy the way CM, do you have anything against the "Rich" guy who made it on his own.
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01-27-2014, 08:55 PM
Post: #33
RE: Blaine Richardson Leaves GOP, To Run As Independent
Honestly I am saddened to see that we have reached a point in our political process where it takes a cool million or more to win a rural congressional district in northern New England. How can the average Mainer, much less the average Mainer living in the second district, feel that they are being properly represented in Congress (The People's House), when there is such a disconnect between the people and the Big Government political class?

Established in New England in the Year of our Lord 1648.
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01-28-2014, 10:05 AM (This post was last modified: 01-28-2014 10:09 AM by Vic Berardelli.)
Post: #34
RE: Blaine Richardson Leaves GOP, To Run As Independent
(01-27-2014 08:55 PM)Congregational_Minister_ Wrote:  Honestly I am saddened to see that we have reached a point in our political process where it takes a cool million or more to win a rural congressional district in northern New England. How can the average Mainer, much less the average Mainer living in the second district, feel that they are being properly represented in Congress (The People's House), when there is such a disconnect between the people and the Big Government political class?

It is always nice to utter the platitudes about the people versus the political class but Money is still the Mother's Milk of Politics. No matter how honest and sincere you are, if you are shy about raising money you should not run for major office. And the 2nd CD will actually require more money than a normal congressional district for reasons I will explain below.

As to fundraising: I did one campaign where for several weeks the candidate was told that he could consult with us before 8 a.m. or after 7 p.m. In between, he was confined to an office, supplied with lists and expected to be on the phone asking for donations. We said if we saw him on Caller ID in between those hours, the only acceptable reason for calling us would be the question, "I have XXX XXXX next on the list. What should I know before I call him?"

Having run campaigns in the 2nd CD I can explain some of the big expenses required there:

First, remember geographically that it is the largest CD east of the Mississippi River. In bigger states a CD might be only part of a city's limits and perhaps a couple of adjacent suburbs. Fryeburg to Houlton, all within the 2nd CD, is 290 miles one way and a five hour drive.

Therefore, you have far more expense for simple things like mileage reimbursement. You don't ask a young entry level campaign staffer to do a lit supply run in his or her own car from Auburn to, say, Lincoln without reimbursing mileage. And there are more hotel expenses for the candidate (and possibly an aide) because if the candidate lived in, say, Androscoggin County and had to be at an evening meeting in Washington County, there is no way he or she would be able to get home to sleep in his or her own bed and be up for campaigning the next morning.

So you already have costs not incurred in the average CD geography, where in most a candidate can be home each night to sleep in his or own bed.

Then, you need to go over the filters of MSM and party hacks to reach the voters directly through advertising. Due to the size of the 2nd CD, it is necessary to buy THREE (3) different TV markets! One needs to buy WAGM-TV 8 in Presque Isle to reach northern Maine, the four Bangor TV stations to reach central and eastern Maine and the more-costly Portland TV stations (where you waste much of the buy on 1st CD viewers) in order to reach the southwestern part of the district like Androscoggin and Oxford counties. And voters are so scattered over large rural areas that buying over-the-air stations is crucual because cable ads only reach the densely-populated cities. And you need to buy in every daily in the state except the Journal Tribune and Times Record if you want to reach the eyeballs of 2nd CD voters.

Therefore, unlike the compact buys one needs in a single media market like 1st CD, you have three markets and then you must run the regular flights of ads to get across the message - a minimum of 17 to 20 views per person before it sinks into consciousness.(Which explains why you complain about the same ads over-and-over; this is a scientifically developed formula of how many views required before impact.)

There are a lot of other expenses incurred in campaigning on a regular basis. Even fundraisers cost upfront money for facility rental, promotion etc. And if an out-of-state celebrity comes to town, the campaign usually must pay travel and lodging and, in some cases an honorium fee. In the 2010 election cycle, former-NYC Mayor Rudolph Guiliani would go anywhere to appear at a GOP candidate fund-raiser. When I inquired, his staff said it wanted a deal for 30% of the revenue from the event to payoff his 2008 presidential campaign debt on top of travel and lodging.

But to finance a 2nd CD campaign you almost have to think of the statewide budget required of a US Senate campaign because, except for southern coastal Maine (Camden to Kittery) to run in the 2nd CD is akin to running a statewide race.

As to funding. When you make the rounds of the K Street lobbyists, groups like RNCC and PACs, there is a standard threshhold which must be met in order to win endorsements or contributions. Even if you are with them 1,000% ideologically, they measure a serious candidate by how much seed money the campaign raised early. If the campaign cannot show a minimum $100,000 cash-on-hand it might as well save the trip to Washington, DC because they won't even get an interview, let alone an open checkbook.

There is more to financing a campaign than this but it is an overview of why in a rural district like 2nd CD costs seem so high.
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01-28-2014, 08:14 PM
Post: #35
RE: Blaine Richardson Leaves GOP, To Run As Independent
I should mention that an open seat is even more expensive because all of the candidates need to spend more money on name identification to become brands in the voters minds.

Once elected, incumbency gives advantages.

And fundraising can be creative if you think outside the box.

One year in a site for K Street which list all the day's activities in DC there was an item that Mike Michaud was selling Maine balsam Christmas wreathes at an afternoon social in the National Democrat Club. The price was $2,500 for a small and $4,000 for a large. Obviously the lobbyists would drop by, write the check and then pawn off the wreath on a secretary.

Once at a central Maine bowling alley, Michaud held a bowling party where people paid $100 a line to roll a bowling ball and eat a slice of pizza with the congressman.

A Texas Republican held a Kill It and Grill It Day at Ted Nugent's ranch where the well-heeled conservatives forked over $3,000 each to go hunt wild game and rub-shoulders with the iconoclastic rock star.

Another Texas Republican congressman went to the company that makes airline supplies and had custom-printed product and sent supporter lists a note, "Send me $20 and I'll send you your very own Obama Barf Bag."
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