WASHINGTON -- Chris Dodd was one of the first prominent Senate Democrats last week to decide he would vote against the Iraq funding bill.
His next step: to sit down at a plain brown desk at his campaign headquarters and speak for 39 seconds in front of a digital video camera. Just Dodd and the camera. No American flag in the background. No crawl across the screen. No gimmicks, not even a script.
An hour later, the clip was on YouTube. "I cannot and will not simply give this president another blank check," Dodd said - and within a day, about 9,000 people who had visited YouTube had watched and heard him say it.
The Connecticut senator's presidential campaign has gone high-tech, an unlikely marriage, perhaps, between a 63-year-old master of the grip-and-grin school of stumping and a group of Internet experts young enough to be his children.
Dodd's tech staff comprises Tim Tagaris, 30, a veteran of the Democratic National Committee and last year's Senate campaign by Ned Lamont; Tim Cullen, 33, a former software developer who did similar online work in Dodd's Senate office; Matt Browner-Hamlin, 25, known in the blogosphere for his myleftnutmeg.com site (wow, great plug, even if Lightman didn't realize it isn't necessarily his site); and Brett Schenker, 28, a political consultant who is considered an expert on discovering new technologies and making them work for campaigns.
Dodd's efforts win points from the wired world, particularly his ability to react quickly and forcefully, as he did the other day.
"Dodd's people were very smart to get this video out there on the eve of the vote," said Jane Hamsher, founder of firedoglake.com, a liberal blog.
Monday, May 28, 2007
Courant features Dodd's "tech squad"
In this morning's Hartford Courant, DC Bureau Chief David Lightman explores the Presidential Candidate's use of some of the best internet talent available to get his message out:
Posted by CT Bob at 5/28/2007 09:12:00 AM