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December 5, 2006

November Report

Today’s Downsizer-Dispatch . . .

November should have been really bad for We take it as a sign of things to come that it actually turned out pretty good.

We’ve come to expect downturns in the run-up to elections as people focus on the political contest, plus continued lethargy after the post-election blues set-in, followed by still more slow going as Thanksgiving kicks-off the grueling holiday marathon. November is tailor-made for distraction and slow growth. But . . .

We did okay.

Nearly all our key indicators moved upward.

Attrition in our email subscriptions can be pretty intense unless Congress is in session doing bad things to cause people to sign-up, and Congress was out of session most of the month. But we still grew by 91 net subscribers to reach an all-time month-end high of 23,817.

We also had our best November ever for recruiting new people to use our Congressional Contact System. 315 new supporters registered to use the system for the first time, as compared to 203 in November, 2005, and 124 in November, 2004.

The total number of registered DC Downsizers now stands at 15,484. That’s about 29 Downsizers per member of Congress. This is an important number. We were told by people on Capitol Hill that Congressional offices really start to pay attention when they get 30 messages on any given issue. So . . .

We now have the hypothetical capacity to accomplish this on a regular basis. Of course, we know there are more Downsizers in some districts, and fewer in others, and you all have busy lives, so our ability to generate that 30 messages is still hypothetical rather than actual. But we’re getting closer and closer each month.

We sent 16,452 messages to Congress in November. This number really stuns us. It’s MUCH higher than we would have expected for a normally slow month. We weren’t nearly as agressive in calling for action as we had been in October, but we were just 177 messages shy of equalling the October score. You guys sent 3,867 more messages than you did in November of last year, and a whopping 16,195 more than in November, 2004.

Are we reaching critical mass, where the growth and the activity keep on increasing, no matter what the circumstances? It’s starting to feel like it.

Our strongest campaign in November was the effort to stop the NSA Spying bill with 4,545 messages sent to Congress. Next was the campaign to repeal the REAL ID Act with 2,874 messages and third was “Read the Bills” with 2,613 messages sent. This brings the grand total for “Read the Bills” messages to 56,940. The drumbeat continues, and Congress can have no doubt that the campaign to pass “Read the Bills” is here to stay.

All-in-all we’ve now sent 442,515 Downsize DC messages to Congress.

Last, but not least, our funding was also surprisingly strong for November. Yes, we did miss our budget goal for the first time in four months, but by only about $1,000, which is much better than we’ve done in past Novembers. Part of this is due to our every-growing roster of monthly credit card pledgers. The more monthly pledgers we have each month the easier it is to reach our goal. Total monthly pledges now stand at $5,426.53. This means we only need to raise an additional $8,574 this month to achieve our budget target of $14,000. This is very important because . . .

Money raised above $14,000 will fund advertising, and once we have that amount in secure income each month our advertising efforts will increase dramatically, as will our recruitment and pressure on Congress. We’ll also be able to launch our “One Subject at a Time Bill” to prohibit Congressional leaders from passing unpopular legislation by combining it with popular bills. In short, the sooner we have reliable monthly funding of $14,000 the sooner we’ll be able to start making Downsize DC and our proposals like the “Read the Bills Act” known to everyone, everywhere, everyday.

We’ve made it very easy for you to help us reach this goal. You can start a monthly credit card pledge of $3 or more HERE. Almost anyone can afford that amount, if they value our work. But please do more if you can. Our highest monthly pledge right now is $200, and this donor would love to see someone else do even more. So would we. You can do so HERE.

Well, that’s it for November. Now onto to our work for December . . .

Thank you for being a DC Downsizer.

Jim Babka
President, Inc.

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