Running on the high road

New ‘how-to’ campaign guide steers away from low road

March 6, 2019

Blue Jean Nation is aiming to fill a gaping void by developing an instructional guide for how to take the high road when running for office or helping others run, relying on grassroots organizing rather than selling out to wealthy interests, engaging in character assassination of opponents, and further undermining democracy and corrupting government.

The manual provides step-by-step guidance from the exploratory phase to election day. It identifies alternative political currencies that can be substituted for money when running for office and establishes targets for the number of volunteers needed in effective grassroots campaigns at the local, state and federal levels.

“There’s the old playbook for running for office the conventional way, with money and lots of it, and there are plenty of candidate schools teaching the old method of campaigning,” Blue Jean Nation operations director Beth Hartung said. “Candidates following this blueprint travel the low road. Most of them end up losing. A few ‘win’ but at everyone else’s expense. Our democracy loses and trust in government is lost.”

The 17-page how-to guide — Running for Office to Make Change the Blue Jean Way — breaks new ground by focusing on ways to overcome money power with people power, Hartung said.

“The Blue Jean Way means campaigning as if you intend to leave our political system in better shape than you found it, and pursuing victory in a way that allows our whole society to win, not just a candidate or a party,” she said. “So many people who would make great candidates and excellent public servants resist running because they can’t in good conscience do it the way all the professional political consultants teach campaigning. There needs to be an alternative that doesn’t involve getting down in the gutter. Whether you are thinking of running for office yourself or planning to help someone else do it, there is now a map for the high road.”

Blue Jean Nation is making the guide available online free of charge as a public service.