NDN Blog

Meet the New Boss, Same as the Old Boss

Although he may have received a score of 0 on the League of Conservation Voters' environmental scorecard, at least US Sen. John McCain is very big on recycling. Last night's Daily Show takes a look at McCain's "new" stump speech, and finds some striking similarities with the old speech:

A new ad from the DNC hits similar themes to link McCain to President Bush:

Friday Buzz: The Worsening Financial Crisis, McCain's Hispanic Problem, and More

The plummeting financial markets dominated the news this week, and NDN was there to provide guidance and cogent, insightful analysis. Rob was quoted in the Associated Press in an article that was reprinted in hundreds of sources across the country. Rob was also featured extensively in The American Prospect's blog, Tapped, and Michael had a great piece in the Huffington Post blog called "Fear and Reason on Wall Street."

Despite the financial crisis, the NDN team still broke through in other areas as well. Our recent poll of Hispanics in battleground states was covered in the Huffington Post, and Simon was quoted on Hispanics in American politics in Politico, as well as in a great new PBS documentary, "Latinos '08." 

Our affiliate, the New Policy Institute, also garnered a lot of attention this week; its Spanish-language voter education and mobilization campaign, Adelante '08, was covered in Politico, The Las Vegas Review-Journal, MetroLatinoUSA, and Latinovations.


Thursday New Tools Feature: New Tools, New Time

With voter registration deadlines fast approaching in many states, a final push to register new voters is underway. Most notably, MySpace has partnered with the four largest nonpartisan voter registration groups in the country to launch a voter registration contest, the Ultimate College Bowl.

It works like this: students sign up and are given the embed code for the easy-to-use registration widget, which they then embed in their web sites, myspace pages, or blogs, just like I've done at the bottom of this post. The college that registers the most new voters wins a free concert at their school by Death Cab For Cutie, and the school that registers the largest percentage of their students wins a concert by the Decemberists. The students that personally register the most people can also win scholarships or Guitar Hero 2 (as a recent college graduate, I will admit that I would still be very happy to win any of these prizes).

In general, the use of technology to encourage young people to participate in politics is becoming increasingly prevalent and effective. Though our outdated and inconvenient voting system is set up in a way that discourages young people from voting (a fact which is much more responsible for low youth turnout than our purported "apathy" or "unpredictability"), we can now register in ways that fit our lifestyles - through social networking sites, cell phones, and even videogames (Rock the Vote just came out with a registration form request feature for the Xbox 360).

The results are impressive: the Los Angeles Times reports that Rock the Vote has registered 2.3 million voters this year, more than twice as many people as in 2004. Turnout among those under 30 also increased by 9% from 2000 to 2004, more than twice the increase of any other age group. Technology has had a central role to play in this trend; for example, Rock the Vote reports that "voting rates increase 4% when young people receive a text message reminding them to vote."

The Millennial vote has the power to swing this election. As such, it is incredibly important for the political world to engage them directly. To learn more, read our New Politics Institute paper, Leverage Social Networks, as well as our revealing report about The Progressive Politics of the Millennial Generation.

Ad Wars: New Obama Ad, "Tested"

US Sen. Barack Obama's campaign released a new TV ad today, entitled "Tested", which hits US Sen John McCain for his newly-announced plan to "order the Secretary of the Treasury to immediately buy up the bad home loan mortgages in America."

Here is the ad:

Friday New Tools Feature: Obama's TV Channel, and the Coolest Campaign Tool Ever

It has been another week of breaking new political ground for US Sen. Barack Obama's campaign. First, Politico and AdAge report that Obama has bought his own channel on the Dish Network, which reaches at least 11 million people nationwide. Obama's channel, number 73, started out looping his two-minute face-to-face ad on the economy, but is now broadcasting a range of Obama-related media, including his introductory video from the Democratic National Convention.

Obama iPhoneObama's people also just released a new app for the iPhone and iPod touch. Tim already blogged about this yesterday, but I have to say that I've tried it out on my iPhone too and it is absolutely the coolest campaign tool I have ever seen - it actually puts the entire Obama campaign right at your fingertips. The only things  I might have liked to see: 1.) the option to send text messages to friends instead of calling, and 2.) an option to call people other than personal contacts, making regular phone-banking easier - maybe in version 1.1, guys? Finally, one feature that Tim doesn't mention in his post is the "donate" button at the bottom of the app that connects you directly to the Obama donation hotline, making it easy to contribute whenever and wherever you are moved to do so.

The Obama campaign has fully embraced 21st-century politics. To learn more about our groundbreaking work in this area, read our New Politics Institute's New Tools papers, Buy Cable and Go Mobile. They are both very well worth the read; I promise you'll learn a thing or two.

Friday Buzz: Fox News, Bailout Blues, and More

It's been quite a week for NDN in the media.

Yesterday, Fox News gave Michael Moynihan and NDN's Green Project a lot of the credit (or blame? You Decide...) for getting legislation to create a Clean Energy Investment Bank into the House. Michael also got good mentions from the Carbon Tax Center and Carbon Control News.

Rob and Simon's critical work on solving the financial crisis and keeping people in their homes was covered in The Wall Street Journal, The Associated Press (twice, here and here), The Chicago Sun-Times, The Huffington PostThe Hill, and The Phoenix.

NDN's work on immigration reform and Hispanic issues was covered by several major news sources this week, including Newsweek, The Guardian, and NPR, as well as Fort Collins Now, The Miami New Times, HispanicTips.com, and Scoop.

The Washington Post and HispanicTips.com covered the expansion of NDN affiliate The New Policy Institute's Adelante campaign, which has new ads airing in the DC Metro area in addition to Colorado and Nevada. The Statesman also covered the campaign.

Finally, Simon is quoted in The American Prospect this week on the internal dynamics of the evolving Democratic majority in Congress.

Adelante Spanish-Language Voter Education/Mobilization Campaign Expanding into VA, MD, DC; New Ads Released in CO, NV

NDN affiliate The New Policy Institute is excited to annouce the expansion of its Spanish-language voter education and mobilization campaign. Starting tomorrow, the ads will be heard in the greater Washington, DC, metropolitan area in addition to Colorado and Nevada. The campaign has also added two new spots to its lineup of radio ads urging citizens to "move forward and vote."

The media campaign, Adelante, Spanish for "Moving Forward," is a public education campaign that encourages people to vote, explains the process of voting (including early and absentee voting), and targets what is projected to be a large pool of first-time Hispanic voters. For example, in northern Virginia, where most Hispanics are U.S. citizens, the Hispanic population nearly tripled between 1990 and 2006, according to a study by the Cooper Center.

Adelante kicked off last Tuesday with an extensive radio buy in Colorado in Denver (stations KBNO, KXPK, KJMN, and KMXA), Colorado Springs/Pueblo (stations KNKN and KRYE) and Ft. Collins/Greeley (station KGRE) and the launch of a Web site, www.adelante08.org. Just two days later, the ads went up on Las Vegas radio stations KISF, KWID, KRGT and KRRN. Tomorrow, all three ads will start airing on radio stations WILC, WACA and WZLZ in the greater DC metropolitan area, which includes the northern Virgina, southern Maryland and DC media media markets. Ads will air through November 3.

The first ad on the air, "Acuérdate," ("Remember"), will now air in Colorado, Nevada and the DC metropolitan area (starting tomorrow). Additionally, two powerful new ads, "Siglo" ("Century") and "Premios" ("Awards"), have also been put in rotation along with the first and are on the air in Colorado, Nevada and the DC metropolitan area (starting tomorrow). To listen to the ads or read the transcripts, click here.

A Real Solution to the Financial Crisis

Milton Friedman once said that "only a crisis, real or perceived, produces real change. When that crisis occurs, the actions that are taken depend on the ideas that are lying around."

Now, I'm not usually one to quote Mr. Friedman, but in this case he is fundamentally correct (as Naomi Klein shows definitively in her fantastic book, The Shock Doctrine). And what we have on our hands right now is a genuine crisis; in fact, a new Washington Post - ABC News poll shows that a majority of Americans view the current financial situation as a "crisis." But that's not all:

"...the poll also revealed significant public concern with the bill Congress rejected yesterday, as few voters said the package did enough to protect 'ordinary Americans,' and nearly half said it did not go far enough to shore up the nation's economy."

What this information should tell progressive lawmakers is that, in the midst of this crisis, there is also a real opportunity to do something important. If they can conjure up the political nerve to seize this moment, they have a chance to help secure the financial (and moral) future of the country. We have offered some suggestions about how this can be accomplished, but the key is keeping people in their homes. The general public is looking for an idea to solve this crisis; they want a measure that protects ordinary Americans and shores up our economy. This is that idea, and now is the time to make it happen.

Impalin' Palin

SNL's Tina Fey skewered GOP vice-presidential nominee Gov. Sarah Palin again this week. This time, Fey focuses on Palin's disastrous, neigh-catastrophic interview with Katie Couric. Palin's performance in the interview sparked a mix of disbelief and disgust among newscasters who usually keep their feelings to themselves: CNN's Jack Cafferty said that if the thought of Palin becoming president "doesn't scare the hell out of you, it should," and calls the interview "one of the most pathetic pieces of tape I have ever seen from someone aspiring to one of the highest offices in this country."

Here is a clip from the original interview, followed by SNL's send-up - what's scary is, it's hard to tell which one is the joke.

Update: According to Howard Kurtz of the Washington Post,

"...the worst may be yet to come for Palin; sources say CBS has two more responses on tape that will likely prove embarrassing."

Given what already aired of this interview, it's difficult to imagine what the blooper reel contains - let's hope it sees the light of day.

New McCain Ad Tries to Shift Focus from Economy

A new attack ad from U.S. Sen. John McCain hits U.S. Sen. Obama for voting against a war funding bill, in an attempt to bring the focus of the campaign back to McCain's home turf, foreign policy and national security (and playing make-believe). Here's the ad, entitled "Promise":

The ad fails to mention the fact that Obama voted against this bill after President Bush vetoed Obama's version of the appropriations bill, which included a time-table for troop withdrawl (McCain was absent for the vote but urged Bush to veto the bill). Obama summed it up nicely in the debate on Friday night:

"Senator McCain opposed funding for troops in legislation that had a timetable, because he didn't believe in a timetable. I opposed funding a mission that had no timetable, and was open- ended, giving a blank check to George Bush. We had a difference on the timetable. We didn't have a difference on whether or not we were going to be funding troops. We had a legitimate difference."

Syndicate content