Nancy Pelosi: The Golden Lady

Dear Reader,

NPR did a report on Nancy Pelosi's fundraising abilities: link here.

In just an hour or two at the fancy dinner, Pelosi pulls in some $300,000 for the Democrats.

Lots of the donors say they hate the outsized influence money has in politics. But they're putting lots of money into politics. They say they don't want to unilaterally disarm. They don't want to go to a baseball game without a bat.

Beyond the insightful reference to the  Prisoner's Dilemma (related, here) of fundraising, the report contains some interesting details.  Still, I think the report could have gone a lot further than it did.  Really left unanswered: why is she so much better than other Democrats at fundraising?  Why are there not others using her tactics?  That is, what are the barriers to entry in this market?  She's able to user her position as the minority leader to get her message out (recent example) --- but part of the reason she is still the leader of the Democrats is that they know she is good at fundraising.  That can be part, but not all, of the explanation. 

It would be really interesting to take research like what Justin Grimmer is doing --- using text as data and sorting out how politicians represent their constituents --- to see if that can help make sense out of fundraising success.

As a final point: once the money has been raised, it is important to keep it in a safe place.

--- Stag Staff

ps.  Read the Grimmer article; it is really impressive research.