FRONT PAGE CONTRIBUTOR
Organizing for America up to the task… of running potlucks.
Via RS Reader izoneguy comes this heartwarming story of lowered expectations in the health care rationing wars. Yesterday, it was a nascent national movement dedicated to bringing The Audacity Of Hope And Change That You Can Believe In to the huddle masses; today, they’re trying to get enough people together for a decent potluck. And how is it working out for them?
“We had 10 people. Not a huge number, but good,” said Ms. Adkins, 55, who has been an Obama volunteer since the first day she saw him during a stop here on March 11, 2007.
Not that there’s anything wrong with potlucks; in fact, it wouldn’t be a bad idea for the Tea Party folks to start planning to have them after the town halls. Save some money on takeout that way. Of course, given the number of people who show up to the town halls it’d probably make sense to split them up into multiple potlucks, but that’s a logistical issue.
If you want the OfA’s problem in a nutshell, it’s found in this paragraph:
Mitch Stewart, the executive director of Organizing for America who worked as the field director in the Iowa caucuses before running the Virginia operation in the general election, said there was no expectation that every supporter would remain active. Mr. Stewart said the group had chosen not to flood into meetings of Republican members of Congress, but rather to combat what they described as misinformation about the president’s health care plans.
…said problem being that they have to spout off nonsense like this. First off, yes, actually, the expectation was that the President was going to be able to use his email list to mobilize his supporters. It’s just that this was a joke by April: they couldn’t organize house parties to generate popular support for the ‘stimulus’ and they couldn’t get more than a few percentage points of their email list to sign a petition supporting the Democrats’ budget monstrosity. Couple this ex post facto lowering of expectations with having to make a virtue of necessity. As this report shows, OfA is actively trying to pack town halls for at-risk Democrats; and even occasionally succeeding, when they have the right combination of venue, timing, and luck. But if they’re not going to Republican town halls, I think it’s fair for an impartial observer to conclude that perhaps it’s not because OfA doesn’t want to; it’s because they don’t think that it’ll generally work. And as for ‘combating misinformation’… well. I suppose that it’s a more self-flattering term than ‘reflexively supporting your faction.’
But, again: potluck dinners sound like a great idea. Much 0bliged.
PS: What’s ironic, of course, is that the President actually achieved one of his campaign objectives here: he’s created a national coalition of grassroots activists that are organized and ready to participate in the democratic process at the community level. It’s just that they’re opposing him – and at this point, they’re doing it in places like San Francisco.
Crossposted to Moe Lane.