Plouffe on "Obama 2.0"
Even as Barack Obama completes his transition from candidate to president, the political machine he built in his successful 2008 campaign is also taking new form as an advocacy group for legislative agenda.
Bits and pieces of the structure of Obama's political organization have spilled out in recent days -- most notably the appointment of Virginia Gov. Tim Kaine as the chairman of the Democratic National Committee and Jen O'Malley Dillon as its executive director, a sign that the president-elect plans to keep control of his massive grassroots army in the hands of a small number of loyalists.
One of those loyalists who is certain to be involved in the re-imagining of Obama's political world -- "Obama 2.0" as its known to insiders -- is campaign manager David Plouffe who recently explained his thoughts on what the new organization might look like in an interview over the weekend with the Post's Lois Romano. Plouffe also spoke at length about the transition, and offered a ringing endorsement of Eric Holder, Obama's choice for attorney general, who will face tough grilling on the Hill later this week.
The goal of the new grass-roots operation, according to Plouffe, is to ensure buy-in from the millions of people who donated or volunteered during the course of the campaign. Plouffe added that the advisers tasked with the transformation of Obama's political operation have spent considerable time poring over the half-million (or so) surveys filled out by supporters online looking for guidance about the next iteration of the organization.
"We're going to help facilitate people having discussions back in their home town communities about that -- building support, talking to people about these issues," Plouffe told Romano.
The challenge, Plouffe acknowledged, is turning a group of people who came together in support of a candidate and a campaign into a grassroots group organized around legislation.
"It is much different than a political campaign," said Plouffe. "That's not what we are undertaking here, we want to just basically try and, for those people that want to get involved, on issues out there in their community, we want to try to figure out the best way to try and help facilitate that."
Look for Romano's complete interview with Plouffe on washingtonpost.com tomorrow morning. More details on the look of "Obama 2.0" as well as the players -- in addition to Plouffe -- that will be involved in the effort are expected in the next week or so. We'll have them all for you on the Fix.
January 12, 2009; 3:55 PM ET
Categories: White House
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