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The Dems' Data Mining Project

The Democrats, led by Hillary Clinton and Harold Ickes and funded by radical leftist George Soros, are organizing their own data mining project in an attempt to compete with the Republicans' electronic data base.

A group of well-connected Democrats led by a former top aide to Bill Clinton is raising millions of dollars to start a private firm that plans to compile huge amounts of data on Americans to identify Democratic voters and blunt what has been a clear Republican lead in using technology for political advantage.


The effort by Harold Ickes, a deputy chief of staff in the Clinton White House and an adviser to Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.), is prompting intense behind-the-scenes debate in Democratic circles. Officials at the Democratic National Committee think that creating a modern database is their job, and they say that a competing for-profit entity could divert energy and money that should instead be invested with the national party.

Ickes and others involved in the effort acknowledge that their activities are in part a vote of no confidence that the DNC under Chairman Howard Dean is ready to compete with Republicans on the technological front. "The Republicans have developed a cadre of people who appreciate databases and know how to use them, and we are way behind the march," said Ickes, whose political technology venture is being backed by financier George Soros.

"It's unclear what the DNC is doing. Is it going to be kept up to date?" Ickes asked, adding that out-of-date voter information is "worse than having no database at all."

Ickes's effort is drawing particular notice among Washington operatives who know about it because of speculation that he is acting to build a campaign resource for a possible 2008 presidential run by Hillary Clinton. She has long been concerned, advisers say, that Democrats and liberals lack the political infrastructure of Republicans and their conservative allies. Ickes said his new venture, Data Warehouse, will at first seek to sell its targeting information to politically active unions and liberal interest groups, rather than campaigns.

As it stands now, the DNC and Data Warehouse, created by Ickes and Democratic operative Laura Quinn, will separately try to build vast and detailed voter lists -- each effort requiring sophisticated expertise and costing well over $10 million.

What good is a database of Democratic voters if the Dems are incapable of coming up with a coherent message to send to their voters?

"By the time the election rolls around, people are going to know where Democrats stand," Reid said.


But many in the party have their doubts. On Feb. 27, Reid and Pelosi appeared before the Democratic Governors Association. At one point in the conversation, Iowa Gov. Tom Vilsack, noting that the two leaders had talked about a variety of themes and ideas, asked for help. Could they reduce the message to just two or three core ideas that governors could echo in the states?

According to multiple accounts from those in the room, Reid said they had narrowed the list to six and proceeded to talk about them. Pelosi then offered her six -- not all the same as Reid's. Oregon Gov. Ted Kulongoski said later: "One of the other governors said 'What do you think?' and I said 'You know what I think? I don't think we have a message.' "

Viking Pundit is also blogging about the Dems' lack of message.


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Comments (6)

I think the dems do have a ... (Below threshold)
kbiel:

I think the dems do have a clear and coherent message. I've hear it every day: "We hate George W. Bush." Clear, concise, and uterly stupid.

Kim,You and kbiel ... (Below threshold)
nick:

Kim,

You and kbiel should get your heads out of your respective asses. Democrats won't need a message come Nov 06. Unfortunately for rabid Bush fans like yourselves, it isn't just Democrats who distrust and dislike George Bush, it's independents and republicans too (think Dubai ports deal, and you'll begin to understand why). In addition, Vanity Fair's interview with Jack Abramoff won't help your boys either. Read on.......

Abramoff Interview: Lobbyist Details Relationship With Bush, DeLay, Burns

Vanity Fair is set to publish an in-depth interview with disgraced lobbyist Jack Abramoff. Abramoff sheds new light on his close relationships with top conservatives, including some not typically associated with the Abramoff scandals like Ken Mehlman and Newt Gingrich. Some choice quotes:

On President Bush:

President Bush, who claims not to remember having his picture taken with Abramoff. According to Abramoff, at one time, the president joked with Abramoff about his weight lifting past: "What are you benching, buff guy?"

On former Rove deputy Ken Mehlman:

According to documents obtained by Vanity Fair, Mehlman exchanged e-mail with Abramoff, and did him political favors (such as preventing Clinton administration alumnus Allen Stayman from keeping a State Department job), had Sabbath dinner at Abramoff's house, and offered to pick up Abramoff's tab at Signatures, Abramoff's own restaurant.

On Rep. Tom DeLay (R-TX):

Abramoff has "admired Tom DeLay and his family from the first meeting with him," he tells Margolick. "We would sit and talk about the Bible. We would sit and talk about opera. We would sit and talk about golf," Abramoff recalls. "I mean, we talked about philosophy and politics."

On Newt Gingrich:

Newt Gingrich, whose spokesman Rick Tyler tells Margolick that "Before [Abramoff's] picture appeared on TV and in the newspapers, Newt wouldn't have known him if he fell across him. He hadn't seen him in 10 years." A rankled Abramoff says "I have more pictures of [Newt] than I have of my wife."

On Sen. Conrad Burns (R-MT):

Abramoff says: "Every appropriation we wanted [from Burns's committee] we got. Our staffs were as close as they could be. They practically used Signatures as their cafeteria. I mean, it's a little difficult for him to run from that record."

Despite the magnitude of his crimes, however, Abramoff says that imprisoning him would only deprive society of his teaching and/or janitorial talents:

Abramoff ... tells [Vanity Fair] that sending him to prison is "stupid," saying, "Let me teach English, history, music. Or let me sweep floors at the reservation. Instead you'll be paying to feed me to sit in a jail."

Like I said, get your heads out of your respective asses - and have a great day!

Nick,You are so righ... (Below threshold)
Steve L.:

Nick,
You are so right. These types of things are really going to hurt the President's chances at re-election.

The Dems should say absolut... (Below threshold)
Rob Filomena:

The Dems should say absolutely nothing, have no vision, no message. Everytime they open their mouths they end up looking silly. Most frightengly for the Repubs is that even with this strategy, the Dems are likely to win back the House this year, and that's only the beginning. The Republican message has itself become muddled of late. Once a unified front, Repubs are seeing an opportunity to distance themselves from the administration and demonstrate some independence in anticipation of the elections and I think this is creating dissonance within the party and it will cost them.

I liked this quote from the... (Below threshold)

I liked this quote from the article from Rahm Emanuel (D-IL): "When you're in the opposition, you both propose and oppose..."

It's a brilliant idea, one that Americans have been clamoring for...a Democratic party that actually proposes something instead of just opposing everything and jumping on every erroreous news story to issue 'smoking gun' press releases. If they actually come up with a plan for something, anything, the Democratic Party could be a player again.

Can I be the first to shrie... (Below threshold)

Can I be the first to shriek "DOMESTIC SPYING!!!!1!"?

Oh then there was this:
Democrats won't need a message come Nov 06.
Please continue to believe that to the core of your being.




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