Wednesday, June 25, 2008

This Politico story brings out an important aspect of the Obama money gusher (assuming this gusher doesn't keep slowing down) and Obama's wider plans. He is not only running for president; he is also trying to lay the groundwork for an enduring and far-reaching Democratic majority. This is what most presidents and presidential candidates try to do (Bush and Rove tried to do it), and Obama hopes to use any financial edge not only to build himself up but to support candidates further down the Democratic ticket. And he's reaching for more than a filibuster-proof Democratic majority in the Senate and an overwhelming majority in the House:
Barack Obama will focus his resources largely in 14 states George W. Bush won in 2004, his chief field operative said Tuesday, hoping to score upsets in places such as Virginia, Indiana and Georgia.

But winning the White House won’t be his only goal, deputy campaign manager Steve Hildebrand told Politico: In an unusual move, Obama’s campaign will also devote some resources to states it’s unlikely to win, with the goal of influencing specific local contests in places such as Texas and Wyoming.

“Texas is a great example where we might not be able to win the state, but we want to pay a lot of attention to it,” Hildebrand said. “It’s one of the most important redistricting opportunities in the country.”

Texas Democrats are five seats away in each chamber from control of the state Legislature, which will redraw congressional districts after the 2010 census.
Setting up local Democratic legislators in a strong position for the 2010 elections could pave the way for House redistricting very favorable to the Democrats in these states for the next decade.