Hupfer: "It’s a reflection of the relationships that Gov. Holcomb has built over the last 15-20 years around the state with grassroots activists."
|Oct 14||Public post|
FIRST IN IMPORTANTVILLE: Gov. Eric Holcomb will announce at the 2019 Team Holcomb Fall Dinner tonight that he has amassed more than 9,000 signatures as of Oct. 1 to get on the ballot in 2020, months before the January 8 deadline—about twice the number he needs to qualify. The feat—likely the fastest ever a Hoosier candidate has accumulated such signatures—is a testament to the strength of the incumbent Republican’s ground game.
“It’s been a priority,” Indiana GOP Chairman Kyle Hupfer told me in an interview Friday. “From the date that we announced at the Hoosier Gym, we were collecting on-site that day. Our goal all along was to get it accomplished by Oct. 1 so that we could turn our ground forces loose across the state in mayoral races, which is what we're now doing. I think it’s just a reflection of a couple of things: On a personal note, it’s a reflection of the relationships that Gov. Holcomb has built over the last 15-20 years around the state with grassroots activists, with friends who are extremely excited about what he’s done as governor....the second piece is the general strength of the Republican Party in this state.”
HAPPENING TONIGHT: Congressmen and combat veterans Rep. Dan Crenshaw (R-TX), Rep. Brian Mast (R-FL) and Rep. Jim Baird (R-IN) will headline the Republican dinner at the JW Marriott in Indianapolis.
THE PETE BEAT
DES MOINES—Around 700 people gathered behind Theodore Roosevelt High School in Iowa on a chilly Saturday night to hear Pete Buttigieg deliver his stump speech and answer their questions in a town hall format.
In his remarks, Buttigieg seemed to telegraph another yeomanlike debate performance free of gimmicks tomorrow night in Westerville, Ohio.
“The way it looks on TV,” Buttigieg said, “you’d think it was just all about the ups and downs and the numbers and who got the best zinger off on the debate stage and who had the best lines on cable and in the committee room but you would almost forget that what matters in politics—the reason we care about elections—is that the big decisions they make in those big white buildings in Washington filter into our everyday lives. They are a part of whether our lives go well, or go poorly. They come into our homes, our paychecks, our marriages.”
Since I last checked in on Buttigieg’s Iowa campaign in August, the campaign has ramped up substantially: He now has the largest operation of any 2020 candidate there, including 20 field offices and a staff that’s hovering around 130.
On Saturday and Sunday, hundreds of volunteers at 70 spots around the state knocked on doors for Buttigieg.
“We’re building an organization to win in February because this is a now or never moment for our country,” Brendan McPhillips, the campaign’s Iowa state director, said in a statement.
On Saturday night, after Buttigieg spoke, supporters swarmed a Pete Mobile—what appeared to be a retrofitted ice cream truck that passed out shirts and buttons—and staffers asked them to sign cards committing to caucus for Buttigieg.
“Iowa is critical,” Buttigieg told me during the gaggle afterward. “We’re investing, of course, in several early states, but one of the reasons I’m proud to have the most extensive operation in the state is because we’re going to need it. Look, Iowa is the place to settle the question of who can win an election.”
The investment seems to be paying dividends: RealClear Politics' Iowa Democratic Presidential Caucus polling average now has Buttigieg at 12%, polling four points behind Bernie Sanders and nearly seven points ahead of Kamala Harris.
In other Buttigieg news:
Buttigieg sidled up to the right of former Texas Rep. Beto O’Rourke, saying that “stripping churches of tax-exempt status over LGBTQ rights “is just going to deepen the divisions that we're already experiencing—at a moment when we're actually seeing more and more people...moving in the right direction on LGBTQ rights.” (H/T D.J. Judd).
Ahead of Tuesday night’s debate, Buttigieg rolled out more Ohio endorsements: Joe Schiavoni, Former Democratic State Senate Leader; Casey Weinstein, State Representative (OH-37); James Celebrezze, retired Ohio Supreme Court Justice; Ken Harbaugh, Navy veteran and former Congressional Candidate; Greg Landsman, Cincinnati City Council; Sean Fennell, Newark City Councilmember; Nick Komives, Toledo City Councilmember; David Donofrio, Board of Education Member, South-Western City Schools.
Good morning, and welcome to IMPORTANTVILLE. Thanks to the nearly 150 of you who came out to the first IMPORTANTVILLE LIVE events last week. We’ll do more if you want them.
WHERE’S VEEP? He has no public events.
WHERE’S PETE? In Ohio ahead of tomorrow night’s debate.
Notre Dame will be holding the first general election presidential debate on Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2020. IMPORTANTVILLE subscribers know that South Bend is the place that President Trump officially dubbed as IMPORTANTVILLE while campaigning in the city leading up to Indiana’s May 2016 primary. That could prove prescient.
In addition to Holcomb’s signatures, the Indiana GOP now have the signatures required to get Trump on the ballot next May.
“I’m gonna read all of the documents (and) listen to whatever witnesses there may be should I be called to do so, but right now it's an inquiry,” Sen. Todd Young told me on impeachment last week at IMPORTANTVILLE LIVE.
The Hogsett for Indianapolis campaign hasn’t polled the field recently, a sign they don’t think the fundamentals of the race have changed.
An autumn wind whipped between buildings in South Bend on Thursday night, as hundreds of supporters gathered for a Pete for America South Bend office opening, where Pete Buttigieg showed up in a homecoming appearance that marked a new season his campaign.
Fresh off raising $19.1 million dollars this quarter, Buttigieg this week put a new focus on his Indiana operation, hiring a state director and appealing to South Bend supporters to travel to Iowa and make calls on his behalf in the coming months. “It’s very likely that the nomination contest will still be pretty intense and undecided when the primary happens here in Indiana,” Buttigieg said in a gaggle with reporters after the event.
Before he opened his office Thursday, he called Indianapolis Monthly from Las Vegas, where he was about to participate in the March For Our Lives forum on gun policy. In the exclusive interview, Buttigieg talked about the impeachment inquiry, batted down rumors he would run for governor in Indiana, and explained why Indiana might play an outsized role in the nominating contested next year.
Wren: Given the impeachment inquiry, there’s a scenario in which you may run against Vice President Mike Pence. What would that matchup look like for you?
Buttigieg: Well, obviously he would be a very different figure than the current president, but has also been part of the same divisiveness and harmful enterprise that I think he will need to answer for in the event that he does become president. I think the contrasts are clear: If anything, the policy contrasts will become even clearer, because he is such an ideologically far-right figure where the president is I think less driven by ideology and more by a certain kind of personal style. But the better we’re doing it, communicating our message, the easier it will be to understand and support no matter who it is we’re running against.
By Reid J. Epstein and Gus Wezerek, New York Times: “Which 2020 Candidates Have the Ground Game Lead in Early Primary States”
Ms. Warren and Mr. Buttigieg have broken away from the Democratic pack with the most field offices overall in the four early states, and they are making an expensive bet that organizational strength on the ground will catapult them to crucial top finishes in Iowa’s first-in-the-nation caucuses. Their ground games give them more workspaces for organizers and volunteers. More organizers lead to more in-person contact with potential supporters in every nook and cranny of a state.
That’s all for today. Thanks for reading and subscribing.