With Election Day around the corner, Democrats deploy Dave Matthews Band members to deliver ballot boxes to voters across the district at their polling locations.
The Democratic Party, which this year is running up the most seats in the House of Representatives, does not have a party structure like the Republican Party, which is more focused on district-level campaigns and endorsements. The party’s national leadership is a “messaged” structure that promotes a “movement” in which it’s “all or nothing,” as a source said.
Instead, in order to avoid the party from collapsing, the Washington Post reported on July 23 that the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee had “spent the past several months trying to woo a number of centrist candidates, including three in states this year that are safe for the party but crucial in the general election.”
The Washington Post also reported that the DCCC had been trying to recruit a number of candidates, which it felt were more capable than the current crop of candidates.
This isn’t the first time DCCC staff members have attempted to recruit centrist candidates with the hope of securing the votes of moderate Republicans. The DCCC’s attempt to recruit centrist candidates for the 2006 cycle was cut short after it learned that the party didn’t want to recruit candidates.
“So, we decided to focus on winning the hearts and minds of those moderates in the district who were generally opposed to the DCCC’s approach,” a DNC official told the Washington Post back in 2006.
The DCCC has made attempts to recruit centrist candidates for the current cycle, but the party is more desperate than ever with the next election cycle looming.
“This election cycle is the most important election the DCCC has ever run,” a party official told the Post. “And if we don’t win enough moderate districts, that’s a catastrophe.”
The DCCC, which has had its share of problems in 2006 and 2008, has the advantage of being in the majority in Congress this year. The party is still hopeful that it is taking advantage of its majority with its current candidate recruitment.
“We’ve been able to pull off some things that are really impressive here, which bode well for the rest of the cycle,” said a DCCC official to the Post. “We’re focused on recruiting candidates that can be competitive in the districts we’re targeting.”
The DCCC is spending upwards of $20 million on television