This professional report was written as a partial fulfillment
of the requirements for the Master of Public Affairs from
the LBJ School of Public Affairs at The University of Texas
at Austin. It was one of the two reports from the LBJ School
Class of 2001 to receive the Emmette S. Redford Award for
Outstanding Research, which is bestowed upon "original
study by an individual that is of practical significance to
policy makers or develops insights, ideas, or concepts of
significance to the understanding of the public policy process
or the solution of a public problem which manifests a high
quality of research execution and preparation."
This paper is a participant’s analysis of the 2000 Bush-Cheney eCampaign. It raises questions about the success of the effort and the potential impact that new technologies and medias will have on future elections. To answer these questions, a review of surveys about this election is conducted, and the history of the Bush-Cheney eCampaign is established. Then, an examination of the eCampaign’s successes and failures follows, and lessons for future ecampaigns are extracted from both. In conclusion, the Bush-Cheney eCampaign is viewed as a successful operation that had an impact, albeit a small one, on the 2000 outcome. This foreshadows a new electoral world where all campaigns must more fully integrate new technology into themselves in order to succeed by focusing on individuals through grassroots organization and targeted advertising rather than on groups through mass media.
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A Different Kind of E-Publican: An Analysis and Critique of the 2000 Presidential E-Campaign of George W. Bush