Scott Brown was definitely the Massachusetts Miracle. As the dust settles, Lady Libertas has been interested to see not only the reaction to the Brown victory but also the analysis of the Brown victory. Many components came together in this special election to provide an impetus for a Republican victory: healthcare, the economy, a well run Scott Brown campaign, a poorly run Martha Coakley campaign.
But how was it that a virtually unknown Massachusetts state Senator went from a 30 point lag in the polls in November to an indisputable victory & national fame in January? Social Media.
The same Social Media drove an Obama victory and “hip” image in election 2008. Although the platforms may have been the same, the people driving those platforms for Brown versus Obama were very, very different. Conservatives quickly caught on that they needed to update their online skills after election 2008 and they began using those favored Social Media platforms against Obama and the Left.
As the Tea Party Movement and Conservative grassroots activism caught fire in 2009, Social Media became the hub for Conservatives organizing, distributing message and airing grievances with the Obama Administration – particularly on Twitter and Facebook. We took to political activism & social media like ducks to water. CNN even released a story in August called “Liberal Bloggers admit Conservatives have upper hand on Twitter“. By 2010, we can say that more Libs use #tcot than their own lefty leaning (and super boring) hashtags.
Lady Libertas has been blessed to have connected with a wonderful community of Conservatives and Tea Partiers and all-around amazing people via Twitter and Facebook.
One of these amazing people is John LaRosa aka @jslconsulting on Twitter. John is a Political and Business Consultant and Social Media Guru guy in real life (see John’s Blog Here!) – but in Twitterverse, John is the #41stvote guy. Being a Boston resident and Massachusetts native, John had a vested interest in getting onboard with the Scott Brown campaign and turned that vested interest into the twitter hashtag #41stvote. “I did not have interaction with the campaign staff,” John says. “I just ran with it. Lots of people like me just ran with it.”
Coming out of Christmas, national interest and momentum began building around the Brown campaign, due in part to the volunteer Scott Brown Tweet Brigades and Conservative bloggers that started talking up Scott. Lady Libertas knows because I was there … tweeting and blogging my little radical right revolutionary heart out and tagging it all with #41stvote.
Scott Brown became more than the Republican candidate running for Ted Kennedy’s seat – he became our 41st vote in the Senate that could defeat the Democratic filibuster that was preparing to ram healthcare down our collective throats. Scott Brown and #41stvote went viral.
Influential Conservative tweeters not in Massachusetts began picking up the tweets coming from the Massachusetts tweeters and began pushing Scott Brown under the #41st vote. Twitter Grader for @scottbrownma illustrates the momentum behind the Tweet campaigns, with Scott at one point picking up 5000 followers in two days. John’s #41stvote hashtag was in the top five of the tweet cloud for @scottbrownma.
John’s analysis of the impact of the volunteer Twitterverse support: “When there is a community of like minded ‘tweeters’ in place, a solid value proposition like #41stVote can go viral very quickly. People from every state, the vast majority of whom had serious reservations about the content and mechanics of the health care bill, realized that it was in their immediate personal interest—and the overall national interest–to support Scott Brown’s candidacy. This shared concern exploded into a frenzy of grassroots and social media activity when Rasmussen released a poll showing Brown within single digits of Coakley. Urgency met viability. This led to massive online fundraising, a flood of main stream media coverage and unstoppable political momentum.”
On January 5, Rasmussen released their poll stating that Brown was only trailing Coakley by nine points. John says it perfectly: “Rasmussen is on Twitter and that poll got spread by everybody who follows politics. Every political junkie said ‘wow, this guy has a chance in the most liberal state.’ They all became reporters.”
Not only did we become reporters but we were able to see how we could make a difference by involving ourselves in a campaign. The Scott Brown victory has proven that the two wins in November 2009 for Governor in New Jersey and Virginia were not flukes. We have not lost momentum – in fact, we are picking up speed and our target is clear: November 2010.
Scott Brown went on to an incredible victory on January 19 but the final analysis comes with a message for YOU – for all of you who have abandoned your families and spare time to focus on politics – for all of you who have made taking back our country their full time job – for all of you who tweet and blog and facebook and set up powerful and invaluable networks:
YOU are the heart of Democracy.
YOU are the engine of Revolution.
YOU are the power of Change.
and WE have only just begun. Lady Libertas Salutes YOU – I am honored to be working next to Patriots that crisscross our beautiful country.
Lady Libertas also Salutes the Scott Brown Campaign for an Awesome Campaign and unbelievable hard work!
Lady Libertas would like to recognize some of the outstanding patriots on Twitter who drove the Scott Brown campaign on a volunteer basis. Everyone worked so hard – retweeting and posting links and brainstorming on strategies to get the #41stvote message out over and over again. I will not be able to recognize everyone so PLEASE, leave a comment and a twitter address of anyone that I missed …and please make sure that you are following these awesome activists!
Lady Libertas Salutes the People’s Tweets!
@jslconsulting ~ @NorsU ~ @Loxodonta ~ @BradMarston ~ @LadyImpactOhio ~ @JimmyMcIver ~ @hipEchik ~ @STXherry ~ @bobbie85710 ~ @someguynamedpat ~ @WMassRepub ~ @tjholthaus ~ @Conservativeind ~ @bowlmeoverva ~ @bccohan ~ @midlifechick @beesnguns ~ @kamaainaInOC ~ @mnbodden ~ @Raging_Red ~ @ScottOnCapeCod ~ @jana_1977 ~ @tnright ~ @jimofma ~ @sammiesmiles8 ~@zombieshootout
Please Use the Comments to add Tweeps who deserve recognition and I will add them in!
John has started another new hashtag #Code41 – Keep the Momentum Going! See you there!