COLUMBIA, SC (AP) – Following a decisive but unsuccessful bid by U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham, South Carolina’s Jaime Harrison on Tuesday launched a political action committee to try to take advantage of her newly won status as a fundraising powerhouse. they give a lasting impetus to other Democrats, who hope to turn more areas from red to blue.
The Dirt Road PAC will focus on long-term investment in state-level democratic candidates and parties, such as intensive voter registration in areas harder for Democrats to win, Harrison told The Associated Press before the official launch.
“The days when we just hack and nominate a candidate every few years, we don’t have local infrastructure and we think we’ll win – it just doesn’t work,” Harrison told the AP on Monday. “I’m going to focus on investing, and I’m going to do it in a much deeper way, and I’m going to go to areas where people have just been forgotten or given up.”
Harrison said he will be the first to raise funds with Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff, members of the Georgia Georgia Democrats, who will run in the U.S. Senate, which could change the balance of the chamber and for whom he has already raised nearly half a million dollars directly. Harrison then said he would focus on Virginia’s 2021 election before moving on to the 2022 mid-term.
“Rome wasn’t built overnight,” Harrison told the AP. “Long-term and sustainable investments are needed to pay dividends.”
The committee got its name from there a video with a virus campaign in which Harrison met a South Carolina voter living on a dirt road who told the candidate to stay completely out of politics “until a Democrat or a Republican paves the way” that Harrison said was symbolic: the difficulty that so many we suffer in this state. “
Harrison, 44, raised a staggering $ 130 million in his campaign against Graham, and he became the first U.S. Senate hope in the country to cross the $ 100 million threshold. During the race, Harrison broke records several times a year as the country’s several Senate races reached hundreds of millions. To that end, Harrison developed a nationwide profile, gathering a chunky list of cell phone numbers and email addresses that he used several times to make small dollar donations.
The only thing Harrison can’t do right now is pay a large portion of his own campaign money to his committee, which transfers would be allowed if he had reserve cash. Tens of millions will be spent on advertising, infrastructure and locally, there will be little left in the coffers, and much of the remainder has been promised to fund the health care of campaign staff by the end of this year.
During his campaign, Harrison also directed $ 15 million to the Democratic Party of South Carolina infrastructure.
Despite his loss, theories abound in Harrison’s next steps, including the potential start of the chairman of the National Democratic Commission to formally govern the party’s efforts through the 2022 mid-term elections as well as the 2024 presidential term.
Harrison – an associate president and former lobbyist for the DNC who once also led the Democratic Party of South Carolina – previously aspired to the top position and eventually supported the support of current president Tom Perez. Party leaders are technically meeting to elect the next president, although this process could be accelerated if President-elect Joe Biden considers his election.
Harrison, through his Political Action Committee, also raised his immediate concern to encourage other Democrats that his resume uniquely entitles him to formally lead the National Party, taking into account state and national party experience, work on Capitol Hill and the candidate, and existing relationships. with both Biden and the elected vice president, Kamala Harris.
“I don’t think you’ll find a lot of people who’ve probably done these things, and wearing a lot of hats can get into the DNC and understand the path we need to take to rebuild our party.” Harrison told the AP. “If the President-elect were to ask me, I would be happy to serve, I would build better.”
Meg Kinnard is available at http://twitter.com/MegKinnardAP.
Find full AP election coverage at APNews.com/Election2020.