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Obama For America To Relaunch, Giving Democrats New Hope For 2014

Memo Pad Politics

Obama For America To Relaunch, Giving Democrats New Hope For 2014


In 2010, Republicans used dark money “social welfare nonprofits” to target state legislatures in order to redistrict a majority in the House. They were so successful that in 2012 they received 1.1 million fewer votes than Democrats and still managed to keep a majority of more than 30 seats.

On Thursday, we reported how Republicans were bragging about this strategy — and suggesting that the Democrats had no prayer of regaining the House  until after redistricting in 2020.

But suddenly, Democratic hopes don’t seem so dim.

Obama for America — the group launched in 2007 to elect President Obama — will be relaunched on Sunday as Organizing for Action, a  501(c)4 nonprofit that will be run by Jim Messina, Obama’s 2012 campaign manager.

First Lady Michelle Obama made the announcement to supporters via YouTube:

“We’ll work on the key battles of our generation, train the next generation of grassroots organizers and leaders, and organize around local issues in our own communities,” Messina said in message to donors.

After Obama was first elected, OFA became part of the Democratic National Committee. The group never found its stride in advocating for the president’s agenda, but it was able to keep organizers in the field across crucial swing states, providing the infrastructure that delivered President Obama’s electoral college landslide in 2012.

By officially separating itself into an outside group, Organizing for Action can counterbalance the nonprofits on the right that enjoy unlimited donations from individuals and corporations, including Americans for Prosperity, FreedomWorks and Karl Rove’s Crossroads GPS. Though these groups do not have to name their donors, the new OFA says that it will.

With an active database of four million donors, OFA is nearly as powerful as a political party itself. And access to that list may prove to be contentious issue.

“There is the outstanding question of the lists, data, etc.,” one Democratic operative told Buzzfeed. “If that isn’t shared with the DNC, it definitely could be a potential problem.”

OFA’s strength is in galvanizing young people and other parts of the Obama coalition who stayed home in 2010.

“The central political problem faced by Democrats is this: How to make the midterm electorate look like the presidential one, rather than the older and whiter electorate of, say, 2010?” writes The Washington Post‘s Jamelle Bouie.  “A large, well-funded grassroots organization, devoted to persuasion and activism, could become the key tool to reactivating 2012 voters, and bringing them to the polls in 2014.”


  1. Daniel Jones January 18, 2013

    If they stay centrist–as Obama is and has been–then being an independent groupis the only sensible move.

    Better yet, it was part of the DNC, meaning Action can’t be pooh-poohed as just another wild outsider mob.

    1. ROBERT C HASTINGS January 19, 2013

      Centrist only in the sense that, compared to where the two political parties were twenty years ago, their position would appear TODAY to be a centrist position, leaving them much more to the left today than today’s centrists are. Progressive would be a more apt moniker, as that reflects more accurately what their goals are.

  2. charleo1 January 18, 2013

    I am very glad Barack Obama won reelection. And grateful to all those voters from red states
    like mine in Florida. Who, in the face of anti-democratic, voter suppression laws stood in
    line as long as it took, to make their voices heard. I was listening to Bob Mcdonnell, or as
    he’s better known as, Governor vaginal probe, for the unnecessary medical procedure he
    required the women of Virginia to undergo, if they, or their doctor deemed an abortion was
    necessary. Bob had just returned from a Republican retreat, where a lot of soul searching
    had taken place. It was determined Republicans had not stated their policies in the best light.
    And, most agreed that on immigration, women, the T-Party, and the economy, they needed
    to start all over, with a whole new pack of lies, as to how they, “talked,” about these subjects.
    As for the debt. They felt like some of their more conservative members had come too close
    to, “spilling the beans,” as to the Party’s long term plans for Medicare, and Social Security.
    The more seasoned political operatives said the best way to rid the Country of these very
    popular programs with their base constituencies, was to use blackmail, and threats behind
    the scenes, and other less obvious tactics, to force Democrats to make minor cuts, and then,
    hammer them good for turning their backs on the old, and disabled. Which drew a rousing
    round of approval before the meeting was adjourned to the bar, where some more drinking,
    and collective wound licking could take place.

    1. dalnb January 19, 2013

      The current administration is spending far too much time and money supporting the legalization of illegal aliens; giving them amnesty.

      If the Republicans want to gain favor they need to push hard to stregthen our immigration laws improving the process that allows those desiring to migrate to our nation in a faster, less expensive time. We seem to be spending our time and money helping illegals far more than we are doing anything to help those who have chosen to follow our laws and policies. The Republicans could benefit by pushing to fix this mess – not with amnesty but showing respect and assistance to those who want to come here in accordance with our laws.

      1. charleo1 January 19, 2013

        I think we will see a push by Obama to reform immigration policy. But in order to do
        the things necessary to comprehensively, fix the system, he will need a partner on the
        other side of the isle. Remember, President Bush was defeated by his own Party over
        providing a path to citizenship for those who have been in the Country for years. Have
        homes, and businesses, and of course children, who are citizens of the U.S. Common
        sense would dictate, that we cannot, and should not, attempt to start rounding people
        up, and forcing them onto buses headed for their country of origin. But, this is the only
        solution a good part of the Republican base will even consider. The no amnesty, no way,
        faction. However, there are employers, who are also Republicans, that say they must
        have the labor, and want a worker visa program. The afore mentioned group says that
        is a non starter. They point out, with good cause the enormous costs associated with
        providing healthcare, and schools for the children of the undocumented. What Obama
        has done is really tried to break the problem down into smaller parts. He ordered more
        assets to the border, interdicting, and deporting more illegals in his first 4 years, as
        the previous administration did in 8. If we do the math, the combination of a tough
        economy here, and immigrants heading back on their on, along with stepped up
        enforcement aganist those aliens who commit crimes while being in the country illegally,
        being deported. The result is for the first time in many years the total numbers are a net
        zero. By supporting the, “Dream Act,” that would give those kids brought here as children,
        who earn a college degree, or serve honorably in the military, a pathway to become
        citizens in the only Country they’ve known. It seems to me to make perfect common sense.
        But as yet, it has been a no go. But as the political power of Latinos continues to grow,
        so will immigration reform become an imperative both Parties ignore at their own
        political peril.

        1. dalnb January 19, 2013

          If a man (or woman) steals an apple every day they are in fact committing a crime every day thus they become habitual criminals. If their child, regardless of age, follows suit and s/he also steals an apple everyday that child also becomes a habitual criminal. The presence of that child brought here illegally by the parents results in the child also being illegal. When that child becomes old enough to know the act is illegal and criminal they have the ability to stop doing it. The kids who have been brought here by their parents are not the responsibility of the American tax payer. They are the responsibility of the illegal parents who brought them here. The kids are old enough to know and understand they are here illegally. Those who are old enough to know this should take it upon themselves to do the right thing – obey the law – return to the country they belong too. If the want to come here legally they can apply following our laws and they can be welcomed here. If the parents of that child feels this country is doing an injustice to that child they have no one but themselves to blame for it. We have enough problems taking care of our own men and women, parents, seniors and children without taking on a burden caused by the criminal acts of illegals. It may be costly to return them home but is also costly to allow them to stay: Americans should not be burdened with the cost, problems and division of priorities that would come from turning our backs on the legal immigrants and our national laws.

          1. charleo1 January 19, 2013

            I can see where you’re going to be very disappointed with the immigration reforms
            that will be part of a comprehensive overhaul of our immigration laws. But, that’s life.
            It’s not always going to be fair. But, you can’t be serious about a child learning of
            his illegality at age 9, or 10, and saying well, I can stand my blatant criminality
            no longer. I am returning to my Country, where I know no one, and can’t speak the
            language. But, off I go! That will happen when pigs fly. In fact, it would constitute
            an immoral act by lawmakers to require such a thing. Yes. the parents knew they
            were breaking the law, and the employer that hired them knew he was breaking the
            law. So, who committed the greater sin? By the simple fact the immigrant knew he/
            she, could easily get a job paying more in a day, than they could make in a week in
            their own Country. I look at it this way. When Jefferson composed the Declaration
            of Independence, he was speaking for the colonists to the King of England. But the
            ideals, and Rights Jefferson wrote about were universal. He didn’t say, and just for
            your former subjects, we have inalienable Rights. He said all men had these Rights
            bestowed on them by their Creator. And, so forgive me my liberalistic leanings.
            But I believe Jefferson would have included each, and everyone of these people.
            And I also believe a sovereign country has an obligation to know the names, and
            control the number of people within it’s boarders. And I also believe we can accomplish this, and still honor our morals, uphold the values our Country was founded on. And,
            keep in mind, America has always been enriched by each, and every immigrant class.
            And, think about it. Why would these people, be any different? Now, I’m pretty sure you
            don’t agree. But, if you’ll at least think about it. That’s what communication is all about.

          2. dalnb January 19, 2013

            America is in part the great nation it grew to be due to our openness and the long and learned need for laws to regulate society. Legal immigration has always been a part of this greatness as Americans welcomed into our nation and our society those who chose to come here in compliance with our laws.
            Today we seem to want to turn our backs on the legal process followed by the honorable men and women from throughout the world who seek to live their lives in our country. We set law and policy establishing a “legal path” which we welcome others to follow and assist them in coming here. There is no reason for America to ever turn our back on legal immigration, and , there is no reason for America to ever turn its back on our laws. What message do we send to anyone anywhere when we choose to ignore on our own laws. What can we expect from those who violate our laws and seem to be rewarded for doing so. The “Pathway to Citizenship” concept is a slap in the face to Americans and legal immigrants. It is like the kids game of Hide and Seek; the illegals slip into our country and if they can go undetected long enough they are rewarded with amnesty. Americans are not rewarded for violating our laws,
            Many of my best friends now and in the past have been Hispanics Greeks and Italians; I enjoyed our relationship and although some may have been illegal I saw them as good friends. That does not mean though I would support their illegal activities. I would ask them to “man up” to their responsibility and if they have a true and honest desire to be a part of our society they need to go back to where they belong and apply to come here legally. Any parent who elects to put their children into a life of crime should be prepared to accept the consequences; providing for these families is not our responsibility!

      2. ALTreality January 20, 2013

        According to your suggestion, even if we tightened out policies and borders so that not a single NEW person entered this country illegally, this still does not address the problem of what to do about the population that is already here.

        The cost of immigration enforcement annually is more than the funding that goes for the FBI, Secret Service, Drug Enforcement Administration, U.S. Marshal Service and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives COMBINED. That is a shocking waste of our resources to deport 410,000 illegal immigrants this past year, when there are still nearly 12 million undocumented people in this country. Even if you wanted to deport these people en masse, we simply do not have the resources or the logistics to execute such a plan, even if you could get anyone to actually agree to such a thing.

        We are never going to be able to address comprehensive immigration reform until we fix the current problem, whose enforcement costs have increased over 15-fold since the 1980’s. Whether or not you agree with the DREAM Act or the ‘Path to Citizenship’, this needs to be resolved so we can move on to more important issues. It no longer matters how these people got here, they are not going away, so we need to fix this – the sooner, the better.

        1. dalnb January 22, 2013

          Yea – it is some what like ignoring a bad sore that eventually results in gangrene resulting in the loss of a leg, maybe two, an arm and eventually life. If we ignore these problems, as we have for far too long, the end result will be the loss of our country. Our quality of life has declined so much over the past 10-15 years as the millions of illegals slipping into our nation has been ignored. You can not ignore a spreading sore or wound without taking care of it, the eventual cost will be devastating. Accepting the fact the sore is there and just talking about it does do nothing to prevent its spread and ultimate costs and loss! Trying to make excuses does not cure the problem, calling it something else does not fix the problem, convincing he people that the sore is acceptable is in no way doing anything to fix the problem.

  3. nobsartist January 19, 2013

    I will believe it when I see it.

    I hear a bunch of promises, I just have not seen the action. I hope the efforts do not equate in another disaster like his fix for the health care system, or should I call it his “pandering to the health insurance cabal” bill.

    Another half assed job.

    1. dalnb January 19, 2013

      I see a lot of talk but little that is done for America on the whole. We seem to be putting more effort and time into problems that have little too do with national recovery.
      The Amnesty issue seems out of whack to me. We are spending more time and effort clearing the path for illegals than we are in helping those immigrants who have chosen to follow our laws in getting into America. We have millions of legal immigrants who are here with our blessings and we have thousands who are trying to get here in compliance with our law and policies. We have done nothing to help improve the problems they face in coming here legally but we want to turn our back on the illegal entry into our country and spend our time and limited money in helping anyone who wants to come here outside our laws.

      1. nobsartist January 20, 2013

        Its nice that Amerika is such a wealthy nation that we can help the world but not a penny to help the Americans that built this wealth.

        Taxation without representation.

        1. dalnb January 20, 2013

          Along with that – why are Americans expected to spend what eventually will become billions and billions of dollars in supporting illegal aliens given amnesty if Obama gets his way. I supported Obama in both his elections but there is no way I can support giving Amnesty for these illegal’s. The chief complaint seems to be a high cost of shipping them back to wherever they came from; we did not bring them here so I say incarcerate them until they or a friend/relative can pay the deportation costs. There seems to be a grievance that many illegal kids are not getting the same benefits and consideration illegal kids are getting – that is a problem of the parents; they came here illegally along with the kids. We need to deport the entire family. If any of them want to come back they need to follow the same laws, policies and procedures every LEGAL migrant goes through. Giving amnesty to these illegal’s is a slap in the face of all Americans and legal immigrants and degrades our nation of laws!

          1. nobsartist January 21, 2013

            The same old crap. Why are you jack ass’s so hung up on “illegal aliens”? Small minds?

            What about the BILLIONS we give Israel every year?

            What about the BILLIONs or TRILLIONS we give the oil companies?

            All you have is fucking “illegal aliens”?

          2. dalnb January 21, 2013

            Same old crap is right! Why do people rather than address the issue at hand want to push the discussion onto other problems? We have a number of problems that need correcting but cramming them altogether and using one against the other does not solve a thing. If every time we try fixing a problem we use the excuse that something unrelated is also wrong we will never get anywhere. It is like saying we should not do anything to correct a mistake (or deliberate act) because someone else has done it also. I agree with your comments about these other situations but that does not mean we should just ignore the problems of illegal aliens.
            My kids used to use that – they matured enough to no longer suggest a wrong is okay of someone else does it also!

  4. frida January 19, 2013

    My fellow Dems, it is all about determination. We determined in 2008 & 2012 to make sure the man we want to be in the White House and we were successful. We have now to determine more than ever to make sure 2014, two chambers be in hands of our man. This is the only way we can achieve what we voted for. It can be done what is needed is to play our part. We did it in past and we can still do it. Its upon us to start right away, now, now and think wisely.

    1. idamag January 19, 2013

      Frida, it is all about making sure you vote because greater effort and more gerrymandering is on the horrizon to nullify your vote. The people need to speak out against voter supression and gerrymandering.

      1. dalnb January 19, 2013

        When things work the way they are expected to work people do as they think is right. When things do not seem to be working the way the people want they tend to seek out other ways of accomplishing their objectives. That is where the GOP is at this point. They saw failure in Bush and took unusual steps to making change as they wanted it.

        I feel they knew fixing the problems left by the Bush Administration would take a lot of time, a lot of money and a lot of unpopular decisions. That meant an unusually difficult time for the new administration. Based on that the Republicans decided it would be best to let the Democrats win the 2008 elections then do everything they could do to ensure the Democratic administration failed setting the appearance the fault was the Democrats. That would set them up for major wins in 2010 and 2012 and the eventual take over of the White House, the Senate and Congress.

        Senator Mitch McConnell stated the major goals of the Republican Party was to ensure Obama fails and that the GOP would become the dominant party. In their efforts to create filature the Republicans blocked every effort to fix our nations problems. They have become so hostile and indifferent they are loosing any respect they may at one time had. As long as they keep people like McConnell, Kantor, Boehner and Karl Rove at the head of the party they will never regain the respect of the people and America will suffer.

        1. idamag January 20, 2013

          This is not a major league football game where one side has to win in order to become the champions.

          1. dalnb January 20, 2013

            Sorry – am not getting your logic or connection here at all!

          2. idamag January 22, 2013

            dalnb, we have a country to run. We elect people to go to Washington to do just that. Instead, they treat is like a competition and spend four years working out to win, not to make America stronger. The focus should be on the country not winning elections or treating it like a football game.

          3. dalnb January 22, 2013

            I’m with you on that. There is no problem in people identifying and grouping themselves as Republicans, Democrats, Independent or what ever their personal interests and philosophies draw them to. However – every politician should fully understand and accept the fact they are a representative of the American people and their job is to manage the nations business in the best interest of THIS country. When on the job their first interest MUST BE AMERICA – not their party!

            We have for too many years been driven not by what the country needs but what the special interest groups, wealthy contributors and organizations dictate, and corrupt office holders accept. There are few Senators or Congressmen that do anything at all and too many of those who do are driven by greed. They gained office due to expensive campaigns saturating virtually every media source. They do little (if anything) to get America on track but when it comes time for reelection they sell themselves as being the salvation of all good.

            I do not think we will ever again see the true American sprit in our elected officials, and we will not until the people gain control of what happens in Washington. The people need to understand elected officials are there at our will and if they can not do or will not do their job WE WILL remove them from office. We should never have to wait until the next election to remove those who are not doing their job, those who promise one thing and do the totally opposite, and those who try so hard to create failure in our government (as Senator Mitch McConnell and his followers have done for the past four + years).

            Thank you for your reply. I hope you take the interest and effort to encourage strengthening America by forcing politicians to do as we say, as they promise, and for what we pay them for. The American voter should be the politician’s biggest fear!

            Enough lies, enough sitting around (3 day work weeks and only one third of the year in session does not cut it), and stop giving away of America to illegal aliens!

        2. rightwingcrazy January 23, 2013

          I like your Logic

    2. dalnb January 19, 2013

      The idea should not be too ensure we have a single party governing our nation. The idea should be we have honest elected officials who put America above party. Each party has its own concept of what America should look like but both need to ensure that whatever they do is done in the best interest of keep America strong and a representation of all our people. The major problems we have faced in the past 16 years has been the massive effort of people of wealth working to establish a society not recognizable as the nation of the people and for the people but a nation ruled by the elite. I think our President supports the idea that America belongs too all of us, the poor, the average and the wealthy and he will stand strong to support that. My fear though he seems to be too easily swayed by special interest groups and the Hispanic and Latino groups are gaining influence by buying our law makers.

  5. dalnb January 19, 2013

    I voted for Obama in his first run and again this time. Although I am a registered Republican I always vote for the person I feel can do the best job and Obama has been my choice in the last two elections.

    However, I am growing weary of the constant barrage of emails from what seems to be an army of names and organizations encouraging me to support one thing or another and too help finance some effort in his name. It is hard enough living off the small retirement I receive. I looked to Obama to make things better for America and I believe he can do that but I am in no position to fund it for him or to support those who seem to be making a living with their organizations allegedly backing him.

    My fear short of running out of retirement funds is his pushing amnesty for any illegal alien and the dramatic negative effect that will make on our countries work force. I remember when Reagan passed an amnesty program and the effect of that amnesty in our national economy; Reagan’s administration ended up with the third highest overspending of the national GDP since World War II. I do not think we can afford to go through that again! America has enough problems without selling out our nation to the illegals and allowing special interest groups to take our nation over.

  6. Budjob January 19, 2013

    Look Democrats,the fact of the matter is WE OUTNUMBER REPUBLICANS in this country by a more than 2 to 1 margin.You don’t have to be a super mathematician to determine if we get off of our lazy asses,we can toss most of these bastards out of office!

  7. Pamby50 January 19, 2013

    I want the OFA to not only concentrate on the up and coming elections in 2014 but also local ones. We need to take back the state houses too.

    1. ALTreality January 20, 2013

      I concur. ALEC has incredible support and funding at the state and local levels, where they are actually writing the legislation being passed, such as the ‘Stand Your Ground ‘ and ‘Castle’ laws, draconian abortion laws and the union-busting, anti-labor laws, which hurt everyone, not just union workers. I live in a “Right-To-Work-For-A-Lot-Less” state, and our wages are some of the lowest in the country, far below the national average, simply because union has never had any power in this state. Red states like mine have eviscerated the social safety net at the state levels.

  8. William January 19, 2013

    We can only hope!

  9. onedonewong January 19, 2013

    Watch old barak try and get the taxpayers to fund this like they did ACORN. Obama loves to use taxpayers $$ for nonsense his entire presidency has been nothing but one misstep after another

    1. Michael Peterson January 20, 2013

      What kind of drugs are you on? I think you are referring to George the crook Bush arent you??

      1. onedonewong January 20, 2013

        Not Hardly Barak has beaten out old Jimmy Carter as the worst president EVER

      2. idamag January 22, 2013

        onedung is an avowed racist. If he cared to check statistics, George Bush has the honor of the lowest approval rating since the ratings were started. Our congress also has the distinction of the lowest approval rating.

  10. Debbie Kiesel-Ryan January 21, 2013

    We need to bring the voters to the polls in 2012, to take back American from the do nothing republicans. They don’t work for the majority, they work for the rich, corporations and bankers. This is not the America our fore fathers wanted, they spoke out against the bankers and the business owners. They wanted a country where laws are passed to take care of the people!!!!!


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