DNC blunts GOP voter targeting efforts

Washington, DC - The Politico reports this morning on the DNC's state-of-the-art voter file and field plans noting that "[a]fter years of struggling to catch up to the Republican Party's sophisticated microtargeting efforts, the Democratic National Committee appears to have come close to parity."  The DNC has made significant investments in its voter file, infrastructure, and microtargeting efforts and now has a national voter file with comprehensive data on voters around the country that will be an invaluable asset come November.

The following are excerpts of today's story:

DNC blunts GOP voter targeting efforts
By David Paul Kuhn
The Politico
May 23, 2008

"After years of struggling to catch up to the Republican Party's sophisticated microtargeting efforts, the Democratic National Committee appears to have come close to parity. The DNC has now reorganized its data banks into one centralized file that goes a long way toward neutralizing the GOP's advantage in drilling down and identifying crucial constituencies of voters.

"In the last two presidential cycles, the Republican national voter file allowed them to more efficiently locate, communicate with, and galvanize voters. Democrats, by comparison, relied on a disjointed compilation of national and state party data files that varied widely in quality. To boot, said one DNC analyst, many of their files would vanish after each election year. For Democrats, the shift to one 'solid voter file' is 'transformative,' said Ben Self, the DNC's director of technology. 'Whether it is microtargeting, regular targeting, neighbor-to-neighbor knocking on doors, or volunteers making calls,' Self said, 'all these vital campaign activities are built on a national voter file and were not available in 2000…'  

"The party continues to build the DNC's voter file--with some assistance from the Obama and Clinton campaigns, which have been offloading data to the DNC file. That, in itself, is an accomplishment for a party that only brought its voter file in-house for the first time in the 2006 midterm elections. That year, Democrats conducted a pilot program using the data in six states, including Montana, where Jon Tester unseated Republican Sen. Conrad Burns…'A lot of the consumer data helps at the margins,' said Keith Goodman, the director of special projects in the DNC's political department. And, as Goodman notes, many elections are decided at the margins."

For the full story, click here:

http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0508/10573.html