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Tactics & Strategies for Organizing a Successful Ballot Measure Campaign Transit Initiatives Conference December 2003.

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Presentation on theme: "Tactics & Strategies for Organizing a Successful Ballot Measure Campaign Transit Initiatives Conference December 2003."— Presentation transcript:

1 Tactics & Strategies for Organizing a Successful Ballot Measure Campaign Transit Initiatives Conference December 2003

2 Ballot Initiative Strategy Center Mission  Help defeat right-wing and anti-labor initiatives  Help develop a proactive, national strategy to advance progressive ballot measures  Connect advocates and political veterans across state and issue lines

3 Ballot Initiative Strategy Center 3 Core Functions  Direct Support to Campaigns  One-of-a-kind Research  Strategic Guidance

4 Ballot Initiative Strategy Center Ballot Initiatives are allowed in 11 of the 19 Presidential Battleground States Presidential Battleground Non Presidential Battleground

5 Ballot Initiative Strategy Center Key Components of a Successful Campaign  Public support strong enough  Voter self interest paramount  Strong support for concept (70% support recommended with at least 30% strongly support)  Strong support for actual ballot language (should poll on language)  Voters believe there’s a problem  Is their sufficient understanding/concern of traffic congestion or other issues your initiative addresses?  Public education has been done about what voters got for their money from the last initiative  Issues of accountability addressed prior to launching a campaign

6 Ballot Initiative Strategy Center  The plan is specific  Lack of specificity allows the opposition to frame the debate to their advantage and gives voters an out  The opposition has been consciously minimized  Through the structure of the package  e.g. Denver’s light rail campaign with highway funding  Through the coalition  Through the financing mechanism  Campaign message is compelling and consistent  Paid and earned media equally important  Prepare response to expected opposition arguments  Don’t make this about the tax – it’s about the programs

7 Ballot Initiative Strategy Center  Adequate resources are raised  There’s no silver bullet!  The right election is chosen  General? On year/off year? Primary?  Don’t think special elections give you a break – stealth campaigns rarely work  Votes to win are estimated and constantly assessed  Must develop a person-to-person field plan  Volunteers necessary

8 Ballot Initiative Strategy Center  Plan, plan, plan EARLY  Get strategy in writing  An 18-month lead time is NOT too early  Some issues are multi-year campaigns


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