Case studies and campaign fundraising and spending figures from the 2018 midterm elections Influence of the #MeToo movement and unprecedented numbers of female activists and donors. Analysis of the Democratic takeover of the House of Representatives. The rise of super PACs and 501(c) organizations that exist for the sole purpose of advancing the career of an individual candidate and can raise money from sources and in amounts prohibited to the candidate The increased influence of wealthy individuals and groups on the conduct of congressional campaigns The use of social media and the Internet to raise money, communicate with voters, recruit volunteers, and pretest television ads Updated coverage of campaign strategy and communications includes the use of big data, microtargeting, and social media Introduction of new convenience voting methods in many states Introduction of other state reforms, such as redistricting commissions and California’s top-two primary system

Campaign Strategy

Chapter 7 Campaign strategy

The campaign for votes involves voter targeting, message development, communications, and mobilization. During the political parties’ golden age, party organizations formulated and executed campaign strategies. Political leaders, candidates, and activists talked with neighbors to learn about their concerns, sang the praises of those in their party, exposed the foibles of their opponents, and turned out the vote on Election Day. The predisposition of voters to support their party’s candidates was strong and was frequently rewarded with government jobs, contracts, and other forms of patronage.

Contemporary campaigns also involve many of these aspects of campaigning. Successful candidates gauge the public’s mood, craft a message that defines voters’ choices, and encourage their supporters to vote. During years in which there is a ...

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