December 18, 2008
On Monday, I sent an e-mail announcing that the Cindy for Congress campaign organization was closing its doors. In response, I received a flood of replies begging me not to give up.
Believe me, I do not want to give up. As noted in that e-mail, I will continue to do what I can, while also trying to keep life and limb together. I’ve lived in tents and on couches before because my commitment to the cause is greater than my financial resources. And, yes, I’m willing to do whatever it takes to stay in the game if you, my supporters, are able to help provide some of the necessary resources.
Given that we literally are within days of losing our office space, having the electricity turned off and so on, if we’re going to save the Cindy for Congress campaign, we need to act now.
Of course, this plea comes at the worst time of year. Thanks to the failed economic policies of this and past administrations, we’re all financially strapped. Yet holiday traditions call for spending more money than usual. Now, here I am, hat-in-hand, literally begging for money and other resources.
Before you delete this message, let me give you a breakdown of what it costs to keep the Cindy for Congress campaign running. If you’ll read the next few paragraphs, you’ll see that even little donations have a huge impact on our ability to keep the doors open.
We spent roughly $600,000 last year while my opponent raised $2.3 million to ensure her re-election and to elect more status-quo supporting Democrats around the country.
Next year, 2009, we’ll need approximately $240,000 to maintain even a minimal level of visibility and momentum. This will be critical going into 2010 when we’ll need even more money to mount an aggressive campaign that has a more significant impact.
If we divide $240,000 by 12, that means about $20,000 per month in donations to keep the campaign afloat. If we take the monthly figure and divide it by 5000 supporters, we’d need EVERYONE receiving this to donate $4.00 per month.
But the bottom line is, we need you to click the donate button at the top of this message and donate something. Anything. If we can get thru the next month or two, we’ll have time to work on building a more stable financial foundation.
True Grassroots Movement
IF we’re to keep the Cindy for Congress campaign alive and growing between now and the next election in 2010, we need every individual who supports us to be actively involved. We need to focus on convincing thousands upon thousands of people that our efforts are worth supporting.
If I can win a seat in the US House of Representatives, my official duty will be to represent the people of the 8th Congressional district in San Francisco but you know I can’t – and won’t – stop there.
No matter how well or successfully (or failing) Obama is in addressing the ills plaguing this country right now, both the House and Senate need more members who believe they answer to the people. Currently, most members of both houses are beholden to corporate contributors and the super-rich. Together, these two often overlapping groups control a disproportionate amount of the country’s resources and political power.
Our founders believed in one person, one vote (if you were a white, male property owner; but movements have achieved universal suffrage), but we’ve seen this principle erode over the years. Now we’re seeing the results: An economic meltdown; No public healthcare; One environmental disaster after another; Our Constitution lies in shreds; Less security at our ports and borders than before 9-11; A full brigade of the US Army trained and poised to turn on the American public should the president deem it advisable; A public education system rated at the bottom of all such systems in the industrialized world. The list goes on and on and on.
The ONLY answer lies with us … with “We, the People.” Until we stand up for our rights, the deck will continue to be stacked against us. Again, not because of anything the incoming administration does or doesn’t do. The entire system is full of weeds. We need to ferret out those weeds and replace them with healthy green grass.
I apologize for being so long-winded and brazen in my request for support. However, as I said at the beginning of this note, the response to my announcement about suspending the Cindy for Congress campaign was overwhelming. As such, I thought it was worth a last-ditch effort to scrape together enough funds and new volunteers to re-energize the campaign while we figure out how to keep the organization solvent, going and growing.
My most heartfelt thanks for any help and support you can offer. You’ll hear from me at least one more time with an update on the success (or failure) of our efforts.
PS: If it’s impossible for you to make a financial contribution at this time – and I know about financial hardship – continue reading. There are a whole host of things you can do that would help the Cindy for Congress campaign greatly. Remember, the more of you who get involved, the more likely we are to win the next election!
Can’t donate money?
While money is critical at this point – and I do mean critical – we can use help in a number of other areas. Here’s just a partial list of things we need donated that perhaps you or someone you know can help out with:
• Fundraising – house parties, spreading the word, more
• Graphic design
• Hook-ups – If you’re involved in a group of political or human rights activists we can reach out to, let us know.
• Mailing Lists – we need to expand our base of supporters. If you have a mailing list we can use for solicitation and outreach, let us know.
• Media Relations – We desperately need someone to focus on getting the campaign exposure in print, broadcast and electronic media.
• Premiums / sale items – t-shirts, key chains, umbrellas, coffee mugs, etc. Anything that we can put a logo on and sell via the Web site to help produce income.
• Printing (offset)
• Reciprocal Links – put a link to Cindy for Congress on your Web site and we’ll return the favor.
• Spread the Word – send this e-mail to ten of your friends. Ask them to do the same.
• Transportation – In order to run a successful campaign, I’m going to need to travel the country, spreading my message, raising funds, giving interviews, attending events, etc. Anyone with a private plane … unused “bonus miles” or working for an airline who can get tickets at low or no cost, let us know!
• Volunteers – In San Francisco for community activism, distributing pamphlets, gathering signatures, answering phones, replying to requests for information, and participating in other events designed to increase the campaign’s visibility.
• Web site maintenance and development
• Web-hosting service
• Other – If you have any other ideas on how to help build exposure, generate income or access goods and services that would help the campaign, let us know!