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Featured Articles From Our

CampaignGuide
 

Professionally OP-Researched Campaigns Are Better Campaigns

Terry Cooper



There are many, many reasons.  Some of the principal reasons relate to this basic fact:  The function of opposition research is to help your campaign communicate how and why you'd be the best candidate the voters could choose to seize the opportunities and solve the problems that confront your jurisdiction. 

When done wrong, opposition research can cause your campaign headaches, including fatal headaches.  Done right, though, opposition research will be a major contributing factor in your victory. 

An election is a choice.<

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Howard Dean's Screaming TV Blunder

Gail Hogan

In many Presidential campaigns, there is one major blunder that is hammered home by the media, and that incident often ends that person’s presidential bid.  Some classics: Governor Dukakis wearing a helmet and riding the tank;  Senator Muskie crying at a news conference after a newspaper printed derogatory statements about his wife, and the classic, Senator Gary Hart and his playboy antics on that aptly named boat, “The Monkey Business.”   This year it was the Howard Dean Iowa pep rally, now dubbed the “I Have a Scream” speech. 

Whether you believe Howard Dean

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The Making of a Candidate

Mark Proctor

So you want to run for an elected office?  Answering the following questions can help you confirm that running is the right decision for you. 

1) Why do you think you are the best person for the position you seek?

2) Does your immediate family understand that if you are running for an elected office you will be spending many hours away from home during the campaign?

3) Do you have anything in your personal background (public records, credit reports, financial obligations, business or employment experience, etc.) that you would not want to be mad

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Best Practices for your Database System

Benjamin A. Katz
Mark Rackers


While some politicos still cling doggedly to their well-loved clipboards and broken pencils, those items deserve a more appropriate interment in the Museum of Campaigns Past.  Today, you simply must use a database system.  It is the lifeblood of your campaign, the one place (ideally) where you will plan events, track fundraising, catalog volunteers, and manage your budget. 

There are two things you should keep in mind about database systems.  First, you need a good one.  Second, you need to use it right.  A good tool poorly used is no better than no tool at all.  Imagine using your

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Track Your Voters

Alex Gorman



At its core, voter contact isn't complicated. You need to make phone calls. You need to send mail. You and your volunteers need to get out into the street and knock on doors. To do all this right, you need two things: good data and the tools to use it.

A lot of campaign get their data straight from the local registrar. This data is cheap, but it's also unreliable. The local agencies don't usually have the funds to regularly purge the voter rolls to make sure they are fresh and up-to-date. This means that you could be wasting time and money trying to get in touch with voters w

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How to Find & Mobilize Young Voters

Rock The Vote

Registration is the best get-out-the-vote tactic around: in 2004, 82% of registered 18-29 year olds voted. (18)

If you’re in a tight race and need a way to create more votes, register young adults. It’s cost-effective and it works.

• Online, you can register a new young voter for $2-10 per registration application. (19)
• By direct mail, you can generate a new registration application for $5-7 per person. (20)
• In person – on campus and at events – volunteers can generate new registrations at very little cost

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