It’s easy to assume that big money in our political system will always win and good old fashioned organizing can’t bring home big victories anymore.
Last night, we confirmed (again) that’s simply just not true. The Majority Leader in the U.S. House of Representatives lost to an unknown, comically underfunded challenger. The first primary loss of a Majority Leader in history.
Some numbers from this race:
Raised: $5.45 million
Spent: $5.03 million
Vote Share: 44%
Vote Share: 56%
There’s a lot to say about how Cantor spent his money (maybe the $168K on steak houses could have been better spent), but it was clear no amount of money on TV ads or mailers could overcome the energy and passion of Brat’s supporters. We all might not agree with their issues, but you can’t disagree with the fact they had a higher level of enthusiasm in this race.
And they used that enthusiasm advantage to beat back a ton of money and establishment support.
At NOI, we’re training organizers every day to harness that energy and win big victories just like this.
The best practices in data, digital, and engagement organizing we train on have the power to overcome the massive dollars millionaires and SuperPACs want to throw at the TV ads and mailers that they still think win races. We saw it as our training alums (AlumNOI) played big roles in 2008, 2012, and are guaranteed to again in 2014 and 2016.
The cutting edge skills and, most importantly, investment in the people who power these movements — like those we’re training at our New Media BootCamp this week — are making the difference.
We know it. Yesterday the country was reminded of it. And we’ll certainly see it again.
In the meantime, we’ll keep training organizers to win these big victories.