Christine Cegelis won the backing of a campaign fundraising committee formerly headed by Democratic National Committee chairman Howard Dean and now run by Dean's brother.Naturally, the Trib, like your Sun-Times, also discussed Sen. Obama's appearance in the new tv ad for the DCCC candidate. But Christine, like her supporters and the DFA, is focusing on her grass-roots strength:
Cegelis "is just a great candidate; she's got a good ground game, she's really good on issues," said Jim Dean, who heads Democracy for America. "She ran a terrific campaign [last time,] which has a lot of folks fired up, and we just kept that going."
Democracy for America is an outgrowth of Dean for America, the Internet-based campaign and fundraising arm of Howard Dean's unsuccessful 2004 White House bid. Though Dean failed, his Internet operation was credited with creating new interest in politics among youths and became highly successful in generating money for Dean and congressional candidates. ***
In 2004, Cegelis was supported by the DFA and named to Howard Dean's "Dean Dozen" of congressional candidates. Her 44 percent showing then was the best of any Democrat against Hyde in 30 years, leading Democrats to believe the seat is winnable this election.
Cegelis downplayed Obama's commercial in the 6th District congressional contest.As I have said from the time that the Washington Democrats started trolling for a 6th District candidate, this primary will be a showdown between two fundamentally distinct campaign styles: a high-tech, D.C.-funded advertising blitz versus a 6th District resident's grass-roots team of neighbors talking to neighbors.
"I've always been told someone will vote for a candidate they have met and shaken hands with," she said. "And let's face it. I'm that candidate. Tammy has been in this district for what, two months? I've been running for more than two years," Cegelis said.