How Will The Warren Campaign Compete With Scott Brown’s Money? 1

In a “conversation” with a “pro” Elizabeth Warren troll on her Facebook page, the troll asked the question:

How exactly do you expect the campaign to compete with a candidate that has twice as much money already on hand?

Now, that is a very good question that should merit a lot of strategic thinking among the top leaders of the Warren campaign.  I can think of some do’s and dont’s. (I bet you can come up with ideas to add to these lists.)


  • Expect to raise money among the middle-class to compete against the likes of billionaires such as the Koch brothers and the Wall Street crowd
  • Try to raise money at the expense of attracting adherents, volunteers, and voters.
  • Run a campaign that depends on outspending your rival. As a manager I once worked for said, “That is not a business plan, that is a going out of business plan.”


  • Improve efforts to raise the connection in voters’ minds between the name Elizabeth Warren, her photograph, and the office she is seeking.
    • Change the logo on all bumper stickers, web sites, social media sites, and printed material to say “Elizabeth Warren for U.S. Senator” instead of saying “Elizabeth Warren for Massachusetts”
    • Use every opportunity to put her name next to her photo and the office she is seeking.
  • Do not duck controversy, but head it off before it takes on a life of its own. See my post Elizabeth Warren Explains the Intellectual Foundation She Provided for more details on the ad prototype below.
  • Work smarter, not harder
  • Use lower cost guerilla marketing techniques. This is something your volunteers can help you with that won’t extract their hard earned money from them.
  • Fire campaign workers that do not seem to be working in the best interest of the candidate and the voters of Massachusetts

If something doesn’t change in this campaign, I have this worry that Sharon expressed to me:

What if Warren wakes up the day after the election and has to think, “I worked my a** off. What the he** happened?”

Or maybe worse if Warren wakes up and has to say:

I won, but now I owe my soul to the very forces I pledged to fight. How can I face the middle-class voters that expect me to fight for them? Did I let my desire to win overwhelm my desire to govern?

I believe the question for Elizabeth Warren is not, “Do I win, or do I stick to my principles?”. A better question is “How do I win while sticking to my principles?” She could even openly engage the citizens of Massachusetts in this conundrum. After all, she needs their help in accomplishing this.

If Elizabeth Warren sees no way of winning and sticking to her principles, then she has gotten herself into the wrong business. Instead she should just get behind another candidate that wants to try. There is such a candidate, but I leave it as an exercise to the reader to find out who that is. (if you cannot figure out who that is, then you see the problem that other candidate has.)

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One thought on “How Will The Warren Campaign Compete With Scott Brown’s Money?

  • SteveG Post author

    Here is a list of Do’s and Dont’s that Jane Switchenko. head of the Sturbridge Democratic Town Committee, sent me.

    Here’s a couple of “Dont’s” I’ve come up with, drawn from my own dreary experience with her campaign thus far:

    –DON’T immediately reject all ideas that supporters offer; be considerate or at least conciliatory

    –DON’T neglect to r.s.v.p. to well-meaning invitations per “a matter of policy”

    –DON’T become angry and without damage-control strategies when enthusiastic supporters become disgruntled supporters, for they will probably be on their way to becoming disgruntled adversaries soon

    –DON’T turn down invitations to speak in front of hundreds of supporters: that’s where the money is raised! (Not to mention rooms full of campaign-ready volunteers!)

    –DON’T ever, EVER tell a supprter that his/her town is “too small” or “too immaterial” to bother including on a campaign tour

    –DON’T turn down ANY invitations, as a matter-of-fact. (Rescheduling is allowed, when warranted, of course!)

    –DON’T show up at an event without any literature/signs/ballons–ANYTHING–to attract/keep attention

    and some “Do’s”:

    –DO let all of the businesses in your campaign headquarters neighborhood know WHO you are, WHY you are renting space (and the good that will do the neighborhood), WHERE you are located, exactly, so when supporters decide to swing by–and ask directions to the headquarters–the neighborhood business people will know WHAT they are talking about…

    –DO bring the Kennedys on board!! Martha Coakley angered them by taking “Ted’s Seat” for granted. You need the Kennedy aura, or whatever it is…

    –DO offer an alternative date for an engagement in a town when you are unable to accept an invitation.

    –DO remember that “All Politics is Local.”