Fri January 18, 2013
State Dems Aim For '72 Counties'
State Democratic Party leaders say they're launching a statewide strategy to regain majorities in both houses of the legislature, and re-take the governor's mansion.
They're calling it the “72 county strategy,” and according to party chair Mike Tate, it will include campaign headquarters in Green Bay, La Crosse and Eau Claire, as well as intensive use of online technology to get Democratic voters to the polls in 2014, “We believe we have sophisticated technology that's going to allow us to identify the voters who we have to convince to vote our way or convince not to vote for Republicans or convince that you know it's worth coming out in an off year election. They might be only presidential year voters.”
The party plans to raise and spend $500,000 on the effort this year Mort Sipress an Emeritus political science professor from UW-Eau Claire says the party has an uphill battle because the newly drawn districts favor Republicans. He says those new districts allowed the Republicans to secure a majority even though statewide, more Democrats actually voted. He says no matter what kind of strategy the Dems use they will have to find credible candidates to challenge republican incumbents on high profile issues, “Strategically what the they have to do is find issues that resonate with the public and which are counter to what a good part of the public feels about that issue. They are looking for vulnerabilities.”
Sipress says when it comes to winning the governor's race, the biggest challenge will be turning out the statewide majority of voters who swung the state for President Obama and elected Democrat Tammy Baldwin to the Senate.