Sunday, February 8, 2009

Brian Moran Gives Passionate Speech About Grassroots Politics

At an event where Terry McAuliffe tried to buy himself some attention through spending tens of thousands of dollars on tickets for dinner and putting up over the top signs in the streets, Brian Moran delivered a speech last night that sparked strong reactions from his supporters in the crowd down in Richmond. During his speech he spoke passionately about how he is going to be running a grassroots campaign – something I have praised him on here at Left of the Hill – and spoke out against people who are simply trying to buy their way into the governor’s mansion. Making sure that the message was heard loud and clear even outside of the reception, the campaign highlighted this sentiment in a press release sent out late last night.
“The politics of the future isn’t about the politicians. It’s about the people we’re fighting for. It is grassroots driven, honest and principled. And it’s powered by real ideas,” Moran said in his remarks. “We must decide what our party stands for… Will our party be dominated by big money and those who raise it, or will we be the party of the people?”

Moran challenged the audience of Democratic committee members to live up to the best values of our party, saying “Will our party be built from the bottom up or the top down? Will our party be about public service or about personal gain? Will our party be dominated by big money and those who raise it, or will we be the party of the people?”
I'm pleased that Brian seemed to return to his original campaign message last night -- the importance of officials being accountable to the people and not just big donors. I have heard him talk with small and medium sized groups where he spoke passionately about the need to combat poverty, stand up for those who are being discriminated against, and making sure that the Democratic Party represents the people and not special interests.

Before last night, however, it always seemed as though Brian got less passionate when he was in front of a large crowd. Perhaps it was that he didn't know how to respond to Terry McAuliffe entering the race, but something just didn't set right with his recent appearances in front of largely undecided crowds. As he was speaking to a large crowd of Democratic activists last night, however, it appears as though he remembered why what he would be fighting for if elected governor.

With the polls showing him basically tied with Terry McAuliffe, the trick will now be trying to figure out a way for his grassroots styled campaign to overcome the advantages that Terry receives by his national fundraising contacts. In order to do so, Brian needs to continue reminding himself and his supporters why he is in this race -- something he did last night. If his supporters are inspired by his campaign’s message, they will be more effective in spreading that message while volunteering. That is how people such as Sen. Jim Webb and President Barack Obama were able to win here in Virginia and it’s what Moran’s campaign will need to do if he wants to win in 2009.

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