American Promise Candidate Pledge Program – Turning Grassroots Energy onto Votes in Congress
The American Promise Candidate Pledge is designed to educate voters on where candidates stand, and to educate candidates on what voters want. Currently about 200 candidates and elected officials have signed the pledge. The list is available on http://www.AmericanPromise.net/pledge.
Suggestions for getting candidates to sign:
- Maintain a tracking spreadsheet of who has signed and who hasn’t
- Ask for volunteers in each district to go after the pledges
- Arrange a face-to-face meeting for people to pitch
- When they sign take pictures and put out a press release
- Keep a list of who has signed on your website
- Try to identify problems and help to solve them
- American Promise has done research for all of the federal candidates and sent them with information about the Pledge; they have not done this for state candidates
- Some candidates have elected never to make a pledge (turned off by Tea Party pledge, etc.). Ask them to support this effort in other ways.
- End Citizens United and Move to Amend are also collecting pledges. Candidates may not want to sign the AP pledge as well. The AP Pledge is principle-based and provides free advertising for them on the AP website. They might as well sign it too.
John Applewhite, a candidate for Representative has signed the Pledge and he made the following comments.
- Incumbents who have been in office a long time do not take positions they don’t have to take
- Our duopoly suffers from a lack of competition and keeping candidates out of races
- Independent candidates and those seeking to overturn incumbents are natural choices for signing the Pledge
- They can play this issue against the incumbent
- They win if the incumbent joins their position (agrees to limits on financing) and if he/she doesn’t (can make it a campaign issue)