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

Candidates and Nominations

Chapter 2 Candidates and nominations

Can I win? Is this the right time for me to run? Who is my competition likely to be? These are some of the questions that go through the minds of prospective candidates for Congress and other offices. During the golden age of political parties, party bosses dominated the candidate recruitment process. In many places the bosses’ control over the party apparatus was so complete that, when in agreement, they could guarantee the nomination to the person they wanted to run. Moreover, receiving the nomination usually was tantamount to winning the election, because boss-controlled political machines usually were located in one-party areas.1

After the golden age, party leaders had less control over the nomination process and less ability ...

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