It’s another Sunday, so for those who tune in, welcome to a diary discussing the Nuts & Bolts of a Democratic campaign. If you’ve missed out, you can catch up any time: Just visit our group or follow the Nuts & Bolts Guide. Every week I try to tackle issues I’ve been asked about. With the help of other campaign workers and notes, we address how to improve and build better campaigns, or explain issues that impact our party.
We are entering convention week, and now is the time when we are going to see Republican attacks against our nominee, and, more recently, attacks against those who are marketing themselves like they’re on our side … but may not actually be on our side at all. This week on Nuts & Bolts, I’m taking a look at some of the attacks I expect to hear and the myths that people who want to fool Democratic voters are bound to share. Ready to press on? Here. We. Go.
Susan Rice is not Condoleezza Rice
In letters sent to delegates, and in petitions, several claims were made regarding Susan Rice, and, unfortunately, most of those claims had nothing at all to do with Susan Rice—they had to do with Condoleezza Rice. I just want to make clear: That is not the same person. They share the last name “Rice,” and they’re both Black women, but they don’t have much else in common.
The accusations against Susan Rice are that she is a “warmonger” who promoted “the invasion of Iraq.” I would like to take time to point out that narrative is completely false, and if you’ve heard it, you might want to correct it. Here’s the truth, taken from The Gadsen Times:
She served as an adviser to Howard Dean’s 2004 presidential campaign “because he was the only leading Democratic candidate to oppose the Iraq War.” She signed up with Barack Obama in 2008 because he also opposed it.
So, to be clear: Condoleeza Rice worked for the Bush administration and was pro-war. Susan Rice worked for the Obama administration and was opposed to war. While we have no idea what role Susan Rice could play in a future administration, defaming a person using fake facts certainly deserves a rebuttal.
Prepare for women to be treated unfairly
If you didn’t read it when it was originally published, please take time to read Laura Clawson’s fantastic article regarding the way in which a woman as a vice presidential candidate is likely to be treated. Some of the claims are just ridiculous. Claims will be made regarding her ambition—despite the fact that the only two vice presidents to not run for president in anyone’s memory would be Spiro Agnew and Dick Cheney. I also expect to hear a lot about how much she weighs, her looks, her attire—all of that.
I’m going to say this upfront: I don’t care who we nominate. If we get into a showcase of looks, Donald J. Trump, the poster child for sloppy eaters, should be the last person in the world to make any dang comments. If we get into a debate about relationships, Donald J. Trump, a man who is on his third wife and went through strings of women and bragged about it to Howard Stern and others, has no right at all to chastise anyone else.
Always. Check. Sources.
During the 2016 Democratic convention, standing outside of the convention in the square were Republicans pretending to be Democratic delegates who we quickly learned were linked to Project Veritas. They preyed on unhappy Bernie delegates by offering them information that simply wasn’t true at all. This created a more frenzied environment. The disinformation campaign that was run by Republicans wasn’t aimed at boosting their own turnout—it was aimed at depressing Democratic turnout. Voter suppression by any means necessary seems to be the name of the game.
So before you repeat a claim you’ve heard, check it. Here or elsewhere. There are plenty of people who can help. Be more than a bit skeptical. People can proclaim how well-connected inside of the party they are, the fact they are this and that, but does anyone inside the party—or inside any actual campaign—know who the heck they are, really?
The convention is an open meeting
Democratic committee meetings, with very few exceptions, are meetings that are open to the public. You can attend meetings with our caucus and councils. The problem in the past has been that most people did not do so unless they were in the host city. You can check the schedule for these meetings at DemConvention.Com.
Now that the convention is happening virtually, no matter where you are in the country, it’s easier to watch the great meetings at the party. These meetings can help you bring back ideas to your home state, promote ideas in your local community, and build resources inside your own precinct. To make sure you get in, fill out the form—which is available via this link—noting your desire to attend and your email address. That way you’ll get an email welcoming you to attend!
Are you ready to go? Excited for convention week? Tell me in the comments.