Case Study: Tim Kaine
Elect Democratic Candidate in Solid Red State & Maximum Base Vote
The 2005 Democratic Candidate and then Lt. Governor, Tim Kaine would attempt to become governor in the rock-solid Republican State of Virginia and prove Democratic Governor Mark Warner’s election win was not a fluke.
The election was expected to be close even with Independent candidate Russ Potts as a possible spoiler candidate. In 2004, President Bush won Virginia by 8% and internal polling revealed Kaine with a 21-point name identification deficit against Republican Candidate Jerry Kilgore.
A decline in polling for President, George W. Bush and desire for continuity in Virginia for the management style, progressive policies, and leadership that Governor Warner provided
Connecting Kaine with the policies and popularity of centrist Gov. Warner, the evolving demographics statistically favorable for democratic candidates, and the strategic outreach to independent and Republican voters was the strategy for electing Tim Kaine.
Naturally, Tim Kaine would need strong support from Democratic voters comprising largely of African Americans voters and democrats titled as Federal Democrats or 165,000 households that included at least one voter who supported John Kerry in 2004 but failed to vote in 2001 for Gov. Warner.
Our firm focused on the Base/African American/ Federal Democrat target universes through not only an intense door-to –door, phone program, paid advertising, and direct mail campaign but also an innovative outreach program.
The outreach plan targeted Historically Black Colleges and Universities, African American churches, and African American barbershops and salons to combat issues of an area seen as transit and to counter outdated data of disconnected numbers and old addresses.
Kaine's win featured impressive showings in Democratic
strongholds such as Richmond and Norfolk
The turnout effort broke history as the largest for a
Democrat in state history, with a 5.7-percentage-point
margin—a margin larger than that of any other Democrat
elected governor in the past 20 years but just 0.6 higher
than Warner’s margin in 2001
Tim Kaine for Governor of Virginia
Photo Credit: Assoicated Press
Photo Credit: Washington Post
Photo Credit: USA Today