“It was the early support, the attention — the ability to create opportunities for candidates to break out with energy and passion,” said Jonah Seiger, a Democratic Internet strategist.The accompaning photo is of Natasha Celine, who lives in Seattle, who I first met while we were both campaigning for Howard Dean in Iowa in January, 2004.
Thanks in part to the netroots, said Mr. Seiger, the more promising candidates got a second or third look from the mainstream news media, major donors and party officials, especially as the political environment became increasingly unfavorable to Republicans.
Mr. Webb, for example, was essentially drafted last winter by a network of national and Virginia-based netroots activists, who later helped him gather 10,000 signatures in three weeks to get on the Democratic primary ballot.
“They’re a group of people who put their money where their mouth is,” said Jessica Vanden Berg, Mr. Webb’s campaign manager. “They gave Jim — who didn’t have a campaign staff in the beginning or a financial base — they gave him a political base to jump from.”
The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee would go on to endorse Mr. Webb in the primary, and later poured nearly $7 million into his race against Republican George Allen, who conceded on Thursday, cementing the Democrats’ new Senate majority.
Monday, November 13, 2006
"An Uneasy Alliance"