Tuesday, November 09, 2004

An open letter to Terry McAuliffe 
I, like many contributors to the Kerry campaign, received this email from DNC Chairman Terry McAuliffe:
I want to thank you for everything you've done over the course of this campaign. Time and time again we asked for your help, and you were always there for us.

Even though we didn't win back the White House, you created something historic. Our grassroots campaign of hope and optimism was unprecedented in American politics. More than 1 million volunteers made 11 million person-to-person, door-to-door contacts, and made 38 million phone calls to voter in battleground states.

If you were involved in these grassroots activities, we want to hear from you about your experience. What did you do? Did you feel the action you took was effective? Was it a good experience for you? How would you make it better?

Tell us your thoughts.


We plan to use your feedback to help develop our strategy in 2005. As always, you will continue to play a critical role in the future of the Democratic Party. What we created together will be the backbone for Democratic victories in the future.

You and I know that this fight is not over. We will never waver when it comes to defending our values and fighting for what we know is right.

Again, thank you for helping create something special.


Terry McAuliffe
The letter really pissed me off ... so I responded with this, for whatever good it'll do:
Dear Terry McAuliffe and the DNC -

I committed a lot to the 2004 election - my emotions, my time, a lot of work, and a lot more money than I have ever before put into a political campaign - far more than I could reasonably afford. Given the stakes, I felt I could afford no less. For the last year, and especially since the Democratic Party's support coalesced around the candidacy of John Kerry and John Edwards, we have been told over and over that what happened in Florida in 2000 would not be allowed to happen again. You assured us that thousands of attorneys, and at least $50 million, were available to make sure that every voter's choices were fairly tallied and every vote was accurately counted.

That's what you promised. So, to put it bluntly, where the hell are you and what the hell are you doing? Since midday 11/3, the message from the Kerry campaign and the DNC has been "we lost ... better luck next time" with nary a peep about the grossly obvious election irregularities, voter suppression, impossible vote counts and poll results that are completely outside the bounds of rationality.

It may be sufficient for the DNC's Washington insiders to lick their wounds and slink quietly out of sight for a while, to emerge after the Electoral College vote is certified on Jan. 6, the furor has died down, and the election is a fait accompli. For us regular folks, though, such acquiescence is completely unacceptable. We are hurting, politically, emotionally, and economically, and it's only going to get much worse. Even if nothing can be done to roll back the apparent Kerry defeat, not to fight it out on the ground, today, is to give up entirely on the great American experiment - Democracy. That's it, finis.

I have been a progressive for my entire life, and have voted that way in every election since I first registered in 1973. That means, of course, that nearly all my votes have been cast for Democratic Party candidates. If my party can't muster up the wherewithal to fight now, when a fight is so clearly necessary, it might just cease to be my party. Perhaps my efforts, and my money, would be better spent elsewhere - on individual candidates, and distributed to organizations like MoveOn, True Majority, Americans Coming Together, Democracy for America, New Democratic Network, Black Box Voting, and others that won't be told "no" and won't tell me to scurry off until the next time they need my money. Right after the election, George Bush spoke of spending his political capital - a laughable notion for him - but you, the DNC, today have more political capital amongst your supporters than you've ever had before or are likely to have again. Please spend some of it now - as much as necessary - to fight for our votes, for our rights, for the country we believe the United States to be.

So, Terry, I don't want your thanks for a fight well fought, and I'm not yet ready to give you suggestions for next time - it's still this time. We need you today - not in 2005, not 2006, not 2008 - NOW. Get off your asses. Follow the advice of that Warren Zevon song - "I'll Sleep When I'm Dead" - because to rest now will mean that the Democratic Party, and American democracy itself, are indeed dead.


Don't roll over - let 'em know that the time to work is not yet done.

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?