With a year remaining before the Congressional mid-term elections of 2018, the Democrats are trying to reverse their slide in both the House and Senate with the strategy of touting veterans for the open seats.
Both the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) and the VoteVets organization are working together despite the two organizations disagreeing on many issues. But the prevailing message is, that the left wants to dispel the notion that Democrats aren’t pro-military or veterans.
Party officials acknowledge that when they were looking for strong recruits to replenish the Democratic party bench this year, their teams often sought candidates with military experience. But, they argue, veterans have also stepped up in droves and decided to run on their own since the presidential election last year.
The DCCC expects 30 or 40 of its candidates next year will be veterans, a major uptick from recent cycles.
VoteVets, an organization that supports Democratic candidates, told ABC News they recently hired additional staff to handle the increased number of calls from veterans who are thinking about running for office. The group’s co-founder, Jon Soltz, said the DCCC reached out to his group early on, despite the fact that the two organizations have not always seen eye to eye. In 2014, VoteVets backed Rep. Seth Moulton’s, D-Mass., campaign against a sitting Democratic incumbent. This year, though, the two teams are meeting monthly to review the status of veteran candidates’ campaigns.
“One thing I hear when I do town halls in my district is that [people] want me to get out and make sure Democrats are winning across the country,” Moulton told the Concord Monitor last week. So far he has endorsed 12 veterans in swing districts for next year. “These are truly inspiring leaders so I’m proud to support them.”
In September, Moulton hosted a series of events in Boston for some of his recruits to meet donors, receive media training and speak to reporters. Over the last quarter, he raised more than $600,000 on behalf of other House Democratic candidates, which was more than any other member outside of party leadership, according to his staff and the Boston Globe.
Initially, the candidates running for office have stated that they aren’t interested in partisan politics that have divided Washington and won’t follow in lockstep with party apparatchiks and are looking to represent the people of their district…
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