The big story today will be President Bush’s $10,000/person Bellevue fundraiser for Rep. Dave Reichert, but the real story behind the big story probably won’t make it onto the evening news or into the next morning’s headlines. Oh, you’ll see the usual pictures of rich folk lining up for a few seconds with the president, while protesters wave banners outside in a carefully quarantined “free speech zone.” And of course, there will be the traffic. Lots of traffic. But the real news will be taking place a few blocks down the street in a small conference room at the Westin, where Darcy Burner will be breaking new ground in the realm of electronic campaigning.
You’d think maybe, in one of the most tech-savvy regions of the nation, our media might recognize history in the making when they see it. But no, our newspapers, TV and radio have all but ignored the extraordinary new standards Burner is setting with her virtual town hall and the netroots fundraising drive that has organized around it.
Displaying the vision, leadership, boldness and technical expertise that have made her a netroots favorite, Darcy and her staff have used Bush’s visit as an opportunity to send a message on Iraq by creating an innovative “virtual town hall,” and attracting participants of national stature like Maj. Gen. Paul Eaton and Ambassador Joe Wilson.
Meanwhile, the netroots have seized on Darcy’s efforts, organizing around them an unprecedented $100,000 online fundraising drive intended to send a message of our own, that Republican incumbents won’t prosper by toeing the Bush line on Iraq. You will not find a single member of the political establishment who thought we had a snowball’s chance of coming anywhere near our goal, but in the first three days of the drive we have raised over $75,000 from over 2000 donors. Over a weekend. In August. Fourteen months out from the election.
If that’s not breaking new ground, I don’t know what is. And still, our local media refuses to take notice, even as history is being made in their own backyard. Go figure.
Well, somebody will notice… some national journalist will read the headlines at Daily Kos or Atrios today and scoop the Times and the P-I by recognizing that something special is unfolding in Seattle… that the dynamics of political campaigning are changing right before our eyes. Darcy isn’t just another Democrat, she’s a Democrat v2.0. Welcome to the future of politics.
So let the old guard media willfully ignore Darcy’s virtual town hall — you are invited to help us make history with or without them. Go to www.darcyburner.com, submit your question, and sign up to view the live stream. And if you haven’t already contributed via our Burn Bush Act Blue page, please join the 102 HA readers who already have. Let’s blow through our $100,000 target and give the political and media establishment the fright of their lives.
Howie Klein has a great post on Darcy over at DownWithTyranny!