Posted at http://www.moderate-ri.org/, Sept. 3:
A lot has been going on in the 2 weeks since we attained party status!
We have filed for and received our non-profit status, set up bank accounts, got all set up with the Board of Elections campaign finance division, set up our PayPal account and filed all of our federal paperwork.
We have looked at a lot of options for office space, scored a bunch of free office furniture (anyone want to help move a half dozen desks, chairs, conference table, etc next week?) and have been looking at phone systems.
Over 20 folks have come forward and indicated their willingness to run for the General Assembly in 2010. Yes, that number is right…over 20 already. We are only two weeks post-party status and already have candidates for over half of the seats in the RI Senate!!!!
We have talked with 6 potential candidates for governor and are beginning to bring potential General Assembly candidates in front of our Executive Committee for vetting. We hope to announce our gubernatorial candidate in October. I also expect that we will field candidates for most State Officer positions in the 2010 elections.
We took a long look at the race to fill Rep. Slater’s set in the 10th district. The timing of this race was all wrong for us, coming less than a week after our party status was granted. A much larger challenge for us was RI Law, which demands that a declared member of a political party must disaffiliate 90 days prior to candidate declaration day if that person desires to run in a race as a candidate for a different party. For the 10th District race, the 90 day disaffiliation period meant that a member of the Democratic or Republican parties who intended to run in this race as a Moderate would have had to have disaffiliated by May 28, 2009. This date was 2 full days PRIOR to the ruling in our lawsuit. This one race did not merit the legal trek necessary for us to compete.
Opportunities to help
We are looking for volunteers to help with a number of very different activities.
As soon as we get our office and phone system operational, we intend to begin polling operations and phone-based fund raising. Anyone who would like to volunteer some time for these activities can let Margaret know by emailing her here.
From a fund raising perspective, we need volunteers willing to throw a ‘house party’ for the Moderate Party. If you can bring the folks together, we will send someone to the party to speak about our effort and make our pitch. This is a critical activity for us. If you can help us with these efforts, please email Margaret.
We are putting together formal committees to fully flesh out our platform positions. We will have four committees, one for each of the Es. If you are interested in serving on one of these committees, please email Margaret.
Our biggest need
We plan on hiring full time staff in order to best accomplish the lofty goals that we have set for ourselves in the 2010 elections. Among the positions that we intend to fill are: Executive Director, Fund Raiser and two full time staff members. In order to pull the trigger on these hires and sign a lease for our office space, we need to raise a substantial sum of money this month – $50,000.
To put the money issue into perspective, almost $100,000 was spent (not including legal fees donated for our lawsuit) to get the Moderate Party born over the last year and a half.
Our plan for the 2010 elections is to raise more than a million dollars to support our candidates. These monies will be spent on branding and marketing the Moderate Party message to voters. The Moderate Party intends to have a strong media presence over the next 14 months!
The Moderate Party understands that times are tight for too many Rhode Islanders. Yet, the only way that we can accomplish our goals is via donated money that we in effect have to beg for.
So, my plea to the 1,000 recipients of this email are for each of you to donate $100 (or much more if you have the means) now to the MPRI. Operating under party fund raising rules, we can accept up to $11,000 per year per person in donations. It is critically important that we do well in our fund raising now, so that we can do it all over again beginning Jan. 1, 2010.
Asking for your donations is awkward for me – clearly I do not like doing this – but it is critically necessary to bring the change that Rhode Island so desperately needs.
Your donation can be made by clicking here:
I want to thank you in advance for your financial support.
We may very well be filing yet another lawsuit in the very near future…look for more information mid-week next week.