Thursday, March 19, 2015

Rand Paul's Digital Team Helped Re-Elect Bibi

David Weigel writes:
"Israeli elections make our elections look really one-dimensional," said [Michael] Duncan, in an interview from his temporary base in Tel Aviv. (He'd moved there two months earlier to handle the account.) "You had six parties on the right, drawing support from the same pool. We had to reach out to people who'd been supported Kulanu and Jewish Home. I'll tell you, the only thing similar to that in the United States is a crowded presidential primary.

Funny he should say that. Four months ago, Kentucky Senator Rand Paul hired Harris Media to run the digital operations for his RANDPAC–and, theoretically, for his coming presidential campaign. A month later, Likud hired the same consultants to help reach out to voters in the snap election. While Paul was fending off occasional attacks from American hawks, who view him as insufficiently pro-Israel, and declining to sign on to new AIPAC-backed Iran sanctions, Vincent Harris was Instagramming everything from his run from Tel Aviv to Jaffa to his "digital team" (surrounded by Netanyahu posters) to his tour of Israel's wine country.

More importantly, Harris and Duncan were bringing American tactics to Israel's race, and capitalizing off of Netanyahu's moves. The prime minister's speech to Congress was a major boon for social networking. The video led OnlyTheLikud, and viewers were asked to provide personal data, like WhatsApp contact numbers ("that's huge in Israel"), that the campaign could mobilize them with...

Iowa Representative Steve King, a Republican who'd appealed on Netanyahu to speak to Congress, suggested that the victory could help Rand Paul. "There's strong support for Israel in Iowa," King said. "This certainly isn't going to be a negative.

1 comment:

  1. I am a “sectarian purist,” but at the same time; I get political compromise if you decide to play the evil game of politics. If Rand has changed his position on the 1964 Civil Rights Act, I might not like it, but I do get it. The support and cheerleading he has given Netanyahu, however, is disgusting. Netanyahu is a monster on par with Slobodan Milosevic and Rand is putting self-interest above care and concern for actual lives being at stake. What does this say about his character?