PROVIDENCE—Now in its 7th year, the annual convention of progressive bloggers known as Netroots Nation ranks as one of the top events on the Democratic calendar.
It’s also turning into a must-stop for many Democratic House and Senate candidates.
Four Senate hopefuls showed up this year — Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, Tammy Baldwin of Wisconsin, Mazie Hirono of Hawaii and Chris Murphy of Connecticut – in addition to five sitting senators: Sheldon Whitehouse, Jack Reed, Sherrod Brown, Jeff Merkley and Ben Cardin. There were nearly a dozen House candidates from across the nation, including Netroots favorites Darcy Burner of Washington state and Alan Grayson of Florida.
It’s not an event for every Democrat — the progressive blogosphere isn’t interested in advancing the cause of moderates. But for many candidates, Netroots Nation marks an important destination on the candidate circuit, a place to see and be seen by some of the most important and influential voices on the left – bloggers who can generate national publicity and, equally important, Internet fundraising dollars.
ActBlue, the online Democratic fundraising clearinghouse that serves as a conduit between donors and candidates, estimates that it raised more than $18 million in the first quarter of 2012 alone.
Kathy Boockvar, who’s running against GOP Rep. Mike Fitzpatrick in a suburban Philadelphia seat, explained that her presence at the event was about “generating a conversation about the candidacy.”
Kaelan Hutchings Mrs. Schlotthauer English II 16 February 2012 The Event that Shocked the Nation John Fitzgerald Kennedy was the 35th president of the United States. He was assassinated by Lee Harvey Oswald on November 22nd, 1963 in Dallas, Texas. The Death of United States president John F. Kennedy was caused by his political views on civil rights, the space race, and the Vietnam War, and it ...
“I came here because I want to connect as many people as possible to why this race matters,” she said.
Siobhan “Sam” Bennett, who attended this year as head of the Women’s Campaign Fund, said when she ran for Congress in 2008 the Netroots exposure was invaluable.
“The Netroots was a game changer in my race, changing it from a rather parochial affair to a national race,” she said.