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Creigh Deeds’ Mailing Lists – Where Are They Coming From?

I received an email today from the Deeds campaign (the Mary Margaret Whipple endorsement).  Actually, I received two.  Getting multiple copies of the same message from politicians is nothing new for me, but since I’ve never signed up for any Deeds info (or contributed to him), I was curious to see what address they’d used.  Well, it seems they’ve gotten ahold of a unique email address I’ve only used once in my life – on a contribution to the Commonwealth Coalition (a now – as best I can tell – defunct organization that tried to fight the anti-gay marriage amendment in Virginia two years ago).

Now, as a matter of principle and email management, every time I ever give an email address to anyone, I opt-out of any sharing.  So I’m sure I did that with the Commonwealth Coalition.  Further, the Commonwealth Coalition – by the nature of its advocacy issues – would surely have had some appreciation of the confidential nature of its contributor lists.   And yet here we are, with Creigh Deeds magically ending up with that email address (those who are familiar with Deeds’ “support” of the Commonwealth Coalition’s position will enjoy the irony, here).   But what really makes me wonder, here, is the fact that this is the *second* time a unique email address specific to an organization with a similar agenda has been used by the Deeds campaign.  When contacted about this, the director of that second organization assured me that they do not ever share email lists.

So.  Where’s Deeds getting his email lists from?

Update: Apparently this needs to be said – I’m not posting this as a personal criticism of Creigh Deeds.  I *am* posting it because I’m interested in an actual answer here.  In case anyone missed it, Virginia is a state in which discrimination has been enshrined in its constitution.  And that discrimination is against exactly the people who are likely to be active supporters of the Commonwealth Coalition (but not necessarily public supporters, for reasons I hope are obvious).   Whoever is responsible for sharing these lists appears not to get the importance of the promise of privacy (among other things).  I’d like to make sure that they do.

Update II: Representatives from all three organizations – the Commonwealth Coalition, Equality Virginia, and the Deeds campaign, have all told me that they have never shared or exchanged lists.  Which means that we’ve got a bit of a mystery going, as the information was (at some point) in the custody of someone who did share the information.  I’m looking forward to finding out who that was, and I’m sure that – given their clear understanding of the importance of the confidentiality of this information – each organization will continue to be helpful in sorting this out.

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16 Comments

  1. Have you ever thought about the possibility that these advocacy groups give their lists or sell them to someone else, supposedly of the same political bent?

    Like DPVA, for instance.

  2. MB

    Well, sure. That’s how candidates in VA are getting email addresses I used for some DNC-sponsored work in Pennsylvania.

    I presume, however, that organizations are being honest when they provide an opt-out tickbox, or promise me that they won’t share my information (as Commonwealth Coalition did).

  3. I just tossed the business card out for that organization recently.

    Claire might be interested to know, or be able to tell you, about your opt-out.

    Do you know how hot it is down here? Freakingly hot.

  4. Hmmmm

    Let me guess: the other organization was EV, right? And who backed the CC? Why that would be EV.

    Connect the dots.

  5. cvllelaw

    You write this as though it’s Creigh’s fault. Apparently he figured out that the CC would have good information on contacting Democratic voters — certainly true — and he bought the list. So what? That’s how you do it.

  6. MB

    The list isn’t for sale, Cvllelaw. And if it were, that means that they lied to their contributors.

    Is that really how you do it?

    ~

    In any event, this isn’t really about Deeds (to me, anyway). My concern is that supporter lists and contact information that were confidential (as in, not to be shared with anyone but the collecting organization) ended up in the hands of people who apparently don’t think twice about using them for other purposes. Do I really need to illustrate the problem here?

  7. Alan

    Could be that the site that you gave your email to changed their privacy policy. Or maybe they have created a policy defined “never” just like the insurance industry in Florida was allowed to have a policy defined definition of hurricane that does not match up with that given in a dictionary.

  8. As the campaign manager for The Commonwealth Coalition, I can tell you unequivocally that The Coalition did not sell or give its list to ANY candidate. If a candidate has access to our list, it is without the consent or approval of The Coalition. I take very seriously any potential compromise of the commitments we made to our supporters, and will respond accordingly.

  9. Dyana

    Neither EV nor EVPAC have have provided our list(s) to any candidate.

  10. Dyana or Claire, have either of the organizations ever shared the list with another group, such as the Virginia Partisans?

  11. James Martin

    Whackjob-

    Good question with a bad motive. I look forward to Claire saying what organizations she shared her list with but she’ll say definitivly it wasn’t the Partisans. I’ve done the Partisans list since 06 (now there is a prof managment company) and our email list is rather small- just consisting of due paying members (and former members) and people who sign up on the website… And it has never been shared with anyone (except maybe the stonewall democrats)!

    From everything I hear from the Deeds camapign- this list was never bought… But maybe someone else did and it got sold that way.

  12. Come on James, everything you hear from the Deeds campaign? Are you saying as webmaster and license-plate owner, you’re not intimately involved with the campaign. How did you compile the list to load into NGP or Constant Contact?

  13. James Martin

    For the record- the whackjob blog has attacked me on a personal level ceaselessly for more than a year…

    For those interested in the truth- I have never had a part in handleing emails for Creigh (even if they had asked- they use NGP and I’m NGP illiterate …) And if you don’t believe me- just ask the campaign…

  14. Come on Skippy, we’ve been abusing you much longer than that. BTW, nice job taking credit for Roemmelt’s website, after I had to clean up the crap you left when you bailed.

  15. Honestly, if you haven’t been “abused” by us you probably have something very wrong with you.

  16. MB

    Well, Aimee sounds like she’s got a career to fall back on.

    ~

    To anyone else reading, I’m still interested in any help you may have to offer in piecing together how CC’s email list came to be part of the Deeds campaign list.

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