Saturday, November 01, 2008

What if Obama loses? The Genius of the groundgame.

I write this with my heart in my mouth. I have just watched my team Arsenal lose twice this week. Once losing a seeming impressive lead to our failing neighbours and now to lowly Stoke City. I worry this is an omen for Tuesday because there are many similarity such as talent, eloquence and capacity which have not delivered close to any expected results. Granted Arsenal is b no means the favoured team in the Premiership neither are they quite as organised as the Obama campaign has been. If on Tuesday Senator Obama loses unlike most I will not put it down to racism or any such like thing but say that in spite of the odds he came so far and completely rewrote the rules of organising a political enterprise or to be precise ' a start up political machine. He has literarily created a political machine that has vanquished most challenges before him in a little under two years. lets review:

1) The Challenges

These were forever a moving feast such as during the primaries, he was not black enough so African Americans would not vote for him; he was not capable of passing Super Tuesday since Iowa was a fluke and North Carolina was too black; he could not succeed in primaries like he did in caucuses; he could not overcome competition between African Americans and Hispanics; he could not win over blue collar white voters; He will not win white women's vote. In all cases he met and exceeded the challenges and the press moved on to the next set of hurdles for the National elections, he cannot heal the wounds from the primaries or win over the Clinton supporters; we should all watch out for the Bradley effect; Small town voters will never warm to him not after the 'bitter' remark; Reverend Wright will undo him; he can never close the deal. The focus, discipline and dignity with which the Senator met each challenge is a testament for those who say 'it is all small stuff, don't sweat it.

2) The Funding

Much has been said about his record breaking fundraising of over $640 million . The phenom is over 3 million contributors that form a large and significant part of the overall purse. It is quite a transformational process full of possibilities for the future. It started with Governor Dean but it is perfected by the good Senator redefining the capacity of the small contributor to empower candidates and reduce dependency on a few powerful individuals.

3) The Volunteers

Another record breaking model which uses the enthusiasm and networks of the multitudes to deliver a personalised marketing strategy ably supported by a phenomenal database of people and their interest in the Campaign. From all over national and international and not unlike the freedom riders people young and old are working to the mantra of 'Change we can believe in' . It is their movement but yet they do it with the discipline and focus that is unreal when one considers how tough it is to get a 15 people on message. There are 20,000 team leaders in the Obama machine overseeing 5.1 million volunteers ( that has to be a record).

4) The net- relations itself is mindboggling on Facebook alone there are over 2 million directly signed off 'friends'

5) The ground game includes another set of records which are 700 offices across 50 states with 13.3 million solid contacts and registering 1.9 million new voters. For the first time a Democratic candidate competes with his own evangelical team and volunteers. The same is true with Native Americans.

6) The Mediums there is a lot said about the 30 minute informercial but advertising on digital games is itself quite an innovation.

Senator Obama has confirmed an abiding mantra for those whose journey over adversity has been aborted by the expectation of fairness and justice. Simply the only answer to vilification, racism, sexism, unfair competition et al is excellence. There is no space for sentiment but time for the extraordinary. Whatever happens no one can take that away from Senator Barack Hussein Obama. He has answered all the doubters with extraordinary genius of his organisation.

1 comment:


Interesting take on this. I am posting an article that was recently published about Obama at Nigerian curiosity tomorrow, election Tuesday. We'll see whether you prove right.

take care.