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Base Building

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Base Building

  1. 1. Wellstone Action Basebuilding and Elections
  2. 2. Winning Elections While Building Grassroots Power Defining Victory With thanks to the Western States Center Wellstone Action Typical Campaign 50%+1 The Progressive View <ul><li>Winning elections while </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Empowering voters </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Empowering communities </li></ul></ul>
  3. 3. Win Elections While Building Grassroots Power Use of Resources With thanks to the Western States Center Wellstone Action Typical Campaign Drains the base –Resources flow out of community The Progressive View Builds the base and leaves communities with lasting power and new leaders
  4. 4. Win Elections While Building Grassroots Power Holding Politicians Accountable With thanks to the Western States Center Wellstone Action Typical Campaign Election promises, but no follow-up The Progressive View Leaders actively engage with communities before and after the election
  5. 5. Conventional Wisdom Wellstone Action Supporters Undecided Opposition 40% 20% 40%
  6. 6. Conventional Wisdom Wellstone Action Supporters Undecided Opposition 40% 20% 40%
  7. 7. <ul><li>Bring people into the process </li></ul><ul><li>Teach skills and leadership </li></ul><ul><li>Help communities and constituencies be “players” </li></ul><ul><li>Bring community issues to the forefront </li></ul>Wellstone Action Using Elections to Build and Expand the Base
  8. 8. Wellstone Action So… What do we mean by a base ?
  9. 9. PERSONAL BASE <ul><li>= </li></ul><ul><li>the people closest to you – those you can always count on. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>e.g. family, friends, co-workers, neighbors, college connections, kids ’ friends, local or faith community, civic organizations, etc. </li></ul></ul>Wellstone Action
  10. 10. <ul><li>Groups of people who, due to their geography, age, ethnicity, issues, interests and values are or could be </li></ul><ul><li>part of a progressive coalition. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Who is or is not with us now? </li></ul></ul>BASE COMMUNITIES Wellstone Action
  11. 11. <ul><li>= </li></ul><ul><li>the people who can be counted on to vote for a particular type of candidate or party. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>e.g. based on performance in past elections </li></ul></ul>BASE VOTE Wellstone Action
  12. 12. Wellstone Action Two Different Timelines <ul><li>Campaign Cycle </li></ul><ul><li>short-term </li></ul><ul><li>mobilizing voters </li></ul><ul><li>quantitative </li></ul><ul><li>achieving a win number </li></ul><ul><li>Base Organizing </li></ul><ul><li>longer-term </li></ul><ul><li>organizing communities </li></ul><ul><li>qualitative </li></ul><ul><li>build community power, expand the electorate; build leadership and infrastructure in communities </li></ul>
  13. 13. Wellstone Action Campaign Timeline: Base Vote to Win # Non-Voters General Election Voters (1-5) Primary Voters Organization & Party members Key Leaders and Activists Personal Base Time
  14. 14. Wellstone Action Too often – This approach means little or no outreach to under-represented voters.
  15. 15. Wellstone Action Putting it together in a plan Short-term (3-6 months) Middle-term (6-12 months) Longer-term (12 months+) <ul><li>Voter reg </li></ul><ul><li>GOTV </li></ul><ul><li>ID leaders and relationship building in targeted base constituencies </li></ul><ul><li>Leadership recruitment </li></ul><ul><li>Growing relationships </li></ul><ul><li>Working with communities </li></ul><ul><li>Reaching beyond core base – changing the electorate </li></ul><ul><li>Leadership development </li></ul>
  16. 16. <ul><li>Allies </li></ul><ul><ul><li>People and groups that support us (e.g. base constituencies) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Players </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Influential players in a community that we don ’t know where their support is at (e.g. churches, neighborhood groups, community clubs, etc.) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Opponents </li></ul><ul><ul><li>People and groups that oppose us (e.g. the opponent ’s base constituencies) </li></ul></ul>Wellstone Action Putting Together a Plan: Electoral and Community Power Analysis
  17. 17. Wellstone Action Mapping and Targeting <ul><li>Strength Analysis </li></ul><ul><li>Ability to deliver a vote </li></ul><ul><li>Engagement in politics </li></ul><ul><li>Shape/sway public opinions </li></ul><ul><li>Volunteers </li></ul><ul><li>Access to lists/networks </li></ul><ul><li>Resources ($, time, etc) </li></ul><ul><li>Infrastructure: Phones, buildings, etc. </li></ul>Organizational Strength Organizational Weakness Oppose Candidate Support Candidate Don ’t Know
  18. 18. Wellstone Action Mapping and Targeting Organizational Strength Organizational Weakness Oppose Candidate Support Candidate Don ’t Know
  19. 19. Wellstone Action Mapping and Targeting Organizational Strength Organizational Weakness Oppose Candidate Support Candidate
  20. 20. <ul><li>You must win this idea within the campaign </li></ul><ul><li>Hire to reflect your base </li></ul><ul><li>Commit financial resources </li></ul><ul><li>Find time in the candidate ’s schedule </li></ul><ul><li>Build on existing connections in communities </li></ul><ul><li>ALWAYS work with an attitude of respect </li></ul>Getting Real about the B ase Wellstone Action !
  21. 21. <ul><li>Work with organic community leadership </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Set up face to face meetings with leaders </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Develop lists of key contacts </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Identify mutual benefit </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ask for help and money </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Find surrogates </li></ul></ul>Getting Real about the B ase Wellstone Action !
  22. 22. <ul><li>Communicate regularly in the mode of the community </li></ul><ul><ul><li>appropriate language outreach </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>culturally specific outreach </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>ethnic press </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>specialty press </li></ul></ul>Getting Real about the B ase Wellstone Action !

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