Senior officials with American Bridge 21st Century – the group’s full, legal name – told POLITICO that the oppo-slinging outfit will grow to a staff size of about 90 people, including a full 50 trackers deployed to monitor GOP candidates throughout the country. That’s more than double the number of camera-wielding operatives Bridge employed last year.
American Bridge is growing its staff of researchers to 22 people and has already prepared oppo books on 20 Republicans running in competitive elections. The group is broadening its focus to include more House elections and, for the first time, gubernatorial races, and is using its nonprofit arm to join the fray in policy debates over immigration, voting rights and more. American Bridge has begun both monitoring the top tier of Republican presidential candidates for 2016, and truth-squadding GOP attacks on potential Democratic candidates in a recently-unveiled “Correct the Record” project.
Between its super PAC and 501(c)4 arms, Bridge raised around $3 million in the first six months of 2013, officials with the group said. It plans a budget of $17 or $18 million for the full cycle.
All that adds up to a dramatic upgrade in the group’s capabilities as it heads into its second full election cycle of existence. In an interview at the American Bridge offices near Washington’s Chinatown neighborhood, Bridge president Rodell Mollineau said the organization’s staffers and donors came out of 2012 convinced that their approach to research and communications worked, and was worth investing in further.
They’ll be building up their video archives, too, according to Politico.
Already in the calendar year 2013, Bridge trackers have recorded over 1,000 events featuring Republican candidates. Perhaps even more importantly, all that footage is going into a video library that’s now easily searchable by candidate, topic and keyword. The video the group compiles now – regardless of its news value in the present – will be around and quickly accessible, effectively, forever.
In other words, if you think Bridge is a clearinghouse for research in the world of Democratic super PACs now, just wait until 2016.
The organization also just recently announced the launch of its Correct The Record website, which aims to defend Democrats “from GOP smears.”
I can already imagine the parody videos in response. Hashtags too…
Read the full Politico piece, it’s rather informative.