- The Washington Times - Friday, August 29, 2014

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee would like you to donate. Right now.

The campaign organization, hoping to lead Democrats to control of the House come November, has spent the past week sending out a series of strongly-worded, seemingly desperate, fundraising e-mails trying to get supporters to donate.

“All hope is lost,” reads the subject of one such e-mail.

“We’re in serious trouble,” it continues. “Karl Rove and the Koch Brothers are massively outspending us…If we get blown out right now, we might as well give up hope until 2016.”

Another e-mail says Democratic campaigners weren’t ready for Republican attack ads.

“We are ashamed,” the letter reads. “We should have been ready for [Karl] Rove’s Obama-bashing ad blitz. But we didn’t see it coming.”

An iteration sent Friday said, “Debbie Wasserman Schultz pleaded. And bless his heart, James Carville begged. We wouldn’t all be emailing you today if it wasn’t so important.”

Fundraising e-mails from both parties usually contain a bit of hyperbolic, donate-or-it’s-the-end-of-the-world language, but the DCCC’s choice of words has come across as more pleading than such e-mails usually are.

Even the president signed one e-mail, stating that the GOP is outspending their opponents by a 3-1 margin.

“I don’t want to lose this election because we didn’t fight Republican attacks when we had the chance,” the e-mail signed by President Barack Obama said.

The change in tone of e-mails is likely a new tactic being tried by the DCCC, and likely not directly tied to any single event, said Diana Owen, a political science professor at Georgetown University.

“I’ve been getting these for years,” Ms. Owen said of both Democrat at GOP mailings. “I’ve been noticing that to get any sort of attention, the desperation factor is getting ramped up.”

When it comes to political mailings, the most common strategy is bombarding people’s inboxes and seeing what type of message finally gets them to donate, she said.

Both parties have exhausted fundraising through their previous attempts and are hunting for new plans. The previous tactic of “give me a dollar, give me five and you can have a one in a million chance of having a hot dog with the President or a pizza with Mitt Romney” has gotten stale, Ms. Owen said.

“They definitely are seeming to be a little more dire in the their ask,” she said. “I just think it’s part of a strategy to try to shock and try to get any little bit of funds that they can from people they have been going to and going to over and over again.”

Yet another of the e-mails states there is “nothing left to say” about the state of DCCC fundraising.

“Normally at this point, we’d email you to say we’re SO CLOSE to reaching our goal,” the letter reads. “But we’re not even close.”

Neither the DCCC, nor their Republican opponents, the RNC, could be reached for comment Friday.

The doomsday-like e-mails could continue for a bit, as parties tend to stick to strategies until the donations dry up.

“I imagine this will be a strategy that they’ll use until they see it isn’t working, and then they’ll move on to something else,” Ms. Owen said.

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