For Democratic activists, there's no such thing as an off year election. That's a fact that I remembered quickly when I was asked to join Nevada Democrats for their inaugural trainings in Las Vegas and Reno. And wow, was everyone fired up!
More than 100 volunteers — ranging from College Students to Veterans to Senior Citizens and Small Business Owners — came out to participate in the trainings. We learned everything from how to input voter data, to the best ways to build an effective grassroots campaign, and my personal favorite (okay, maybe I'm biased since I gave the training): how to become a digital activist.
I was blown away by everyone's interest, attentiveness, and eagerness to learn. Some activists didn't know what a hashtag was, while others were experts—but at the end of the day, we were all united under one common goal: learning the best strategies, tactics and practices so we can use our resources effectively and elect more Democrats!
Here's what a few people had to say at the conference.
I am a Democrat because I believe in liberty and justice for all. #NVDemsSummit— Dean Schermerhorn (@DScherm) October 13, 2013
I'm a Democrat because I believe in women's health and rights! #NVDemsSummit— SWLVDems (@SWLVDems) October 12, 2013
I am a Democrat because we care about all points of few, lifestyles and people. #NVDemsSummit— Senator Debbie Smith (@sendebbiesmith) October 13, 2013
Former President Bill Clinton sent an email to Democrats across the country urging them to support his close friend Terry McAuliffe in his bid to be Virginia's next governor. Here's what he had to say:
Despite what you might hear from the media, the next election isn't in 2016 or 2014. In Virginia, it's just 22 days away, and there's a lot on the line.
My close friend Terry McAuliffe is running for governor (he'll be a great one!) against a guy who's really out there.
Ken Cuccinelli took legal action against one of the country's best universities (which happened to be his OWN client) because he disagreed with a study on climate change research. He's one of those people who still doesn't believe in global warming.
Oh, and he was the first person in the United States to sue the federal government to overturn the Affordable Care Act.
This is one of the races where we need to do everything we can now.
Many of the same people working to undermine the President's agenda are spending millions trying to prop up Cuccinelli's campaign.
We've seen what a small group of Republicans backed by very wealthy special interest groups can do. They're making it harder for poor folks to vote in Texas. They're trying to nullify federal laws they don't agree with in Mississippi. And they've forced an unnecessary and damaging government shutdown -- something I hoped never to see again.
So here's what we have to do -- we need to fight in all of these battles, we need to win this election, elect Terry McAuliffe, and send this powerful message:
They want to repeal the Affordable Care Act. We want it to work.
We don't want to make it harder to vote. We want every American to be able to participate.
And we don't want to keep the government shut down. We want it to be open for business so our economy can grow.
Please chip in $3 or more to help us work for Terry McAuliffe and Democrats around the country:
Cory Booker sent the following email to supporters urging them to run with him for his upcoming U.S. Senate bid. The special election takes place on October 16th. Join the campaign today.
It's a fair question these days: why would someone want to go to Washington to serve in the Senate at all? My answer: some people run from big challenges -- I run toward them.
I'm running in the October special election to be New Jersey's next United States senator -- and in a sign of the times, my extreme opponent has turned his campaign into an attack on President Obama and his agenda.
Too many of America's leaders turn their backs on the big challenges we face as a nation: the kinds of challenges that could make the lives of our children harder than our own. People like my extreme, out-of-touch opponent are more concerned with sticking it to President Obama than sticking up for American families.
Run with me to help win this special October senate race and solve our toughest challenges together. Join my campaign today.
I understand the skepticism about politics today. I saw it when I took office as mayor of Newark, N.J. Some people said we couldn't create jobs or attract businesses. But today the city's population is growing for the first time in 60 years, and while Newark represents only three percent of the state's population, it's now home to one-third of all commercial and multi-family development. Families can see a better future for themselves here.
I believe that we can do better. I know that when you bring people together to focus on our problems, even the most difficult things become possible.
But my opponent promises to put his extreme ideology above all else. He calls Social Security a "Ponzi scheme" and wants to do away with Medicare. He would outlaw abortion even in cases of rape or incest. He advocates a "tax increase for the poor" while eliminating the corporate income tax. This is the type of divisive agenda that would undo decades of consensus and pull our nation backward.
I reject division and skepticism. And with your help, so will the people of New Jersey in this special election.
Our special election is coming up fast: October 16th. And these special elections are wildcards -- we've seen out-of-touch candidates get elected in these typically low-turnout contests.
We don't have any time to waste, and we can't risk losing this seat.
Tell me you'll run with me before the election next month:
The author Jim Rohn once said, "Your life does not get better by chance. It gets better by change."
I'm running because the truth I've lived in Newark is that people who care can find solutions to even the most difficult challenges.
I hope you'll join me,
If being on the road to visit six State Democratic Parties both in the South and the Lower- and Upper-Midwest in four days is any indication of what Democrats have in store for the Republicans this cycle, my judgment is we’re in good hands! The innovative projects and sheer grassroots organizing happening in states across the country right now is staggering. We're in this to win elections – and with these State Democratic Parties, we will! I started in Tennessee at a great lunch with Chair Roy Herron and Executive Director Kevin Teets who are laser-focused on building constituency caucuses and how we best achieve successes within both the National Party and on the state level. We also discussed bringing greater focus to members of the faith community within the Party. We ended with a note about political humor and the two books he’s authored. What a truly accomplished State Party Chair!Read More
10. Karl Rove's, the Koch brothers', and other conservative groups’ $1 billion in outside money was no match for your grassroots organizing.
9. Everyday citizens stood up to Republican attempts to suppress the vote—and our nation's courts struck down some of the GOP's most blatant efforts in Pennsylvania, Florida, and Ohio.
8. The Supreme Court affirmed what we've known all along: Obamacare is constitutional.
7. Four states made history by supporting marriage equality at the ballot box.
6. Back from the brink of collapse, General Motors is posting record profits and investing billions in the U.S., thanks to a President who wouldn’t let Detroit go bankrupt.
5. President Obama and congressional Democrats prevented 7.4 million college students' loan interest rates from doubling.
4. With the DREAM Act stalled in Congress, President Obama signed an executive order helping undocumented young people in college or the military.
3. As of this year, 3.1 million young people now have health insurance and birth control is co-pay free—all thanks to Obamacare.
2. We've added 5.6 million jobs over 33 straight months of private-sector job growth. That's progress.
1. With 332 electoral votes, President Obama won re-election—decisively.
As 2012 comes to a close, we're heading into a new year, a new Congress, and a new term for President Obama. That means it's an important time to speak up.
We want to know what your priorities and interests are as Democrats, so we've put together a quick survey. Check out this email our chair, Debbie Wasserman Schultz, just sent out, then make your voice heard—because this is your party.
While we at the DNC are still reflecting on the President's victory and all our other wins, we're also refocusing and planning for the work ahead.
How we move forward depends on you. This is your party, and we want to hear from you. What are your priorities and interests?
Please share your thoughts about the election and how you think we should move forward.
Now is the time to hone our strengths and identify areas for improvement.
Together, we're facing a big moment in American politics. We have the chance to accomplish some major successes for the American people. Your input today -- and your participation going forward -- is incredibly important.
I look forward to hearing from you.
As always, thank you so much for your support,
Debbie Wasserman Schultz
Democratic National Committee
Check out a slideshow of photos from Election Night 2012, as Team Obama celebrates the President's re-election in Chicago.