Saturday, February 20, 2016

Ted Cruz’s Super PACs Embrace Ground Game in Republican Campaign

Deep-pocketed donors are wary of lavishing funds on TV ads, which weren’t effective in last presidential race
On a cul-de-sac in this town midway between Greenville and Spartanburg, Tommy Dimsdale bounds up the steps of a ranch house to deliver his well-honed pitch on behalf of a Republican presidential candidate.
“Out here canvassing for Ted Cruz and just letting everyone know about his conservative Christian principles,” explained Mr. Dimsdale, 24 years old, to the voter who answers the front door—an appeal tailored for evangelical voters in the state.
LINK: Cruz Looks to Replicate IA Ground Game in SC
Mr. Dimsdale isn’t a volunteer for the Texas senator’s campaign. Instead, he is a paid staffer for a super PAC boosting Mr. Cruz.
Building a voter-turnout operation is just one way super PACs and their deep-pocketed benefactors are trying out new roles after seeing millions spent on television ads that didn’t win over voters in the last presidential election. This weekend’s South Carolina primary will be a major test of whether they have made the right adjustments and can become the political powerhouses that some once predicted.
...Mr. Cruz’s outside operation is notable for its discipline and its complexity. The network of committees initially drew puzzlement as it sat on its cash throughout the fall, while Right to Rise, the pro-Bush group, spent more than $50 million mostly on television ads.
That strategic decision, though, left the pro-Cruz PACs with more than $30 million to spend just as the primary season began heating up. While Mr. Bush’s ads failed to move him up in the polls, the pro-Cruz super PACs were widely credited with maximizing the turnout of evangelical voters in Iowa and netting a surprise victory for Mr. Cruz over poll-leader Donald Trump. ...
Read the full story HERE.

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