For those of us who believe strong political parties, at both the national and state level, are important for a strong democratic system of politics and governance, this story from Politico identifies a noteworthy development:
Once ignored, underfunded and often written off, Democratic state party organizations are harvesting record-setting cash heading into the 2020 election, reasserting their roles inside the Democratic infrastructure after suffering for years in competition with super PACs and campaigns. . . .
State parties appear to be benefiting in part from an improved relationship with the Democratic National Committee leading up to this election and, now, a nominee who is more invested in the party apparatus than President Barack Obama was.
“For a long time, state parties were ignored during Obama’s presidency and they were incredibly weak,” said former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean, who chaired the DNC from 2005 to 2009, and described the shift of focus from the DNC and state parties to Organizing for America, the Obama campaign apparatus. “Now, they’re not [weak], which is a combination of increased competency among state parties and a donor base that’s outraged by Trump.”
Republicans, meanwhile, have also been building a strong in-state party structure for several years, investing in organizing in particular, with over 1,500 staffers on the ground in 23 targeted states. They’ve maintained more stable data-sharing relationships in recent years, an issue which has at times proven challenging for Democrats.