Thursday, January 9, 2014

Campaign Financing

And the January Reporting Deadline has passed!  That means the e-mails will stop (for now).  The phone calls will stop (for now).  Things will go back to normal (as far as election years go).

And I know what you all have been thinking these past two months.  You do not care about reporting deadlines.  You do not care that the strength of various campaigns will be gauged by the amount of money they were able to raise before midnight last night.  In fact, you're a little turned off by the whole thing.  It is unseemly to ask for money just to put it in a bank account.  It just plain is.  None of you said this to me, but intuitively, I get it.

But what I also get, and why I am writing today, is that you want to see this campaign succeed.  You understand the stakes of this race, my goals for running, and what we can do if we win.  You may not be entirely comfortable with the grounds of the request, but you also want the campaign to meet whatever viability measuring stick may be applied next week.  You want it to be well situated for a hard-fought primary.  You are invested in the outcome.

I can't tell you what our report will contain just yet, but I can tell you this: Yesterday, I asked for $225.  We raised over $1,400 in less than 24 hours.  This campaign is built to last, not only because of what we will report on-hand, but more so the network of support we have in the community.

I can also tell you that you can expect to see more opportunities to participate at lower donation levels.  I've always said I want to "broaden the tent", but I'm really not doing that by holding $100 per ticket fundraisers as I did last November.  Don't get me wrong, those types of events may be necessary for candidates for state-wide office and I have no room to criticize that approach.  But I now understand that it is not the right fit for this campaign.

Fundraising, above all else, has been the most eye-opening and educational experience for me in this campaign.  I am not embarrassed to say that I completely misevaluated what I was going to be able to raise and who I would be able to depend on for support.  No matter your ideas, your work ethic, or your experience in the community, fundraising is a grind.  Nevertheless, we made it back around to my original goal thanks to the support of individuals like you, often with $10 or $20 contributions.

While not necessarily easier or harder than nonprofit fundraising, the skill set is not transferable (a harsh realization for me early on).  It is about selling your aptitude, dedication, and character.  Not "selling" as in "transfer", but rather "valuation".

What I have found is that I can trade on my passion.  I don't think you can talk to me about this race for Delegate without picking up on my passion for what we're doing.  I will not always tell you what you want to hear, but that's because I am operating off of conviction.  Without that, it would be very difficult to put myself through the trials and tribulations, insults and gibes, and 10 pm dinners of a candidate.

I think about all of you who have supported this campaign just about every day.  It is not only a source of gratitude, but also inspiration.  It gets me moving.  And if you can't tell, I'm moving a lot.

Oh, here is something else that happened yesterday:

Have a great Thursday doing what you love!