Mark Sump

Spring 2014

Barack Obama’s two presidential campaigns launched a new era of political communications, taking direct voter contact and mobilization of voters to levels never seen before. These innovative strategies created two historic victories and generated a 60-percent voter turnout rate for the first time in many decades. This spring, Dole Fellow Mark Sump delves into these political communication methods to reveal how they resulted in two Obama victories.

Sump is President and CEO of ACTIVATE, a political consulting firm focusing on technologies that improve and encourage grass roots participation in Democratic campaigns and progressive organizations across the country. Sump has worked in four presidential campaigns and dozens of congressional and state-wide races. As a consultant, Sump helps campaigns design and implement sophisticated grassroots efforts and is known for his introduction of the robocall technology to political campaigns in 1998. In 2005, Sump invented Activate, the first virtual dialing technology that allows volunteer campaigns to make phone calls with the same speed and efficiency of professional companies.

Discussion Group Topic
The Brave New World of Political Communications: Lessons from the Obama Campaigns

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