One of the surest ways to fail as a movement is to continue our reliance on the strength of individual candidates and campaigns. Rallying around a specific candidate has created some major successes – but more often than not – it has created major failures.
At the federal level, there has been lauded growth amongst the liberty-leaning wing of the Hill and yet we are barely making a dent in Congress and have almost no collective clout in the Senate. Our federal legislators need reinforcements and the sad truth is that we will never get them as long as continue to try and bust through one race at a time.
We will never have the resources that the establishment does. Because we cannot compete on anything resembling a dollar for dollar basis we have to ensure that we run top- flight cost effective campaigns. More importantly, we have to make sure we fight them on multiple fronts. By focusing on federal races, there are traditionally a limited number of competitive primaries and/or victory opportunities.
Those same primaries and/or victory opportunities are focused on by the establishment and the liberty movement alike and, due to the limited number of races, are much easier for the establishment to target and win.
In the 2014 election cycle, the Club for Growth and Senate Conservatives fund spent $7,566,187 on losing primary efforts. Activists from around the country dove head first into multi-million dollar challenges in Mississippi, Kentucky, and Kansas. Not only were these defeats costly, but even if they were victorious the number of pro-liberty politicians in the Senate would have still numbered less than ten.
While we must support sound candidates at all levels of government, if we do not systematize our tactics and scale our methods we will continue to be outspent, out-strategized, and out-gunned.
The constant opportunity cost of such large losses combined with the attrition sustained to defend our successes will bleed the movement of resources at the very time we need to grow. We have to develop a sound long-term plan in place that supplements these short-term, high-profile skirmishes.
We must put an infrastructure in place that provides a clear path to a pro-liberty majority. We must move beyond the short- term mentality of campaigns that quickly are constructed and then torn down and towards a long-term plan that will ultimately help all of our candidates all around the country.