State of the Candidate's Websites

We've had a few announcements lately and some non-announcment, announcements. So, I thought it was time to do a little digging and see what candidates have in the way of websites. I'm also going to look at our Democratic leaders, at least those that I know or those who are "progressive" leaning. The grades will be based on the following, which is my take of what the leading candidates are doing nationwide.

F - no website except government site.
D - website with no online contact info (phone/address only) that looks like it was made in Dreamweaver in the 90s.
C - website has online contact info, but is out-of-date with news/bills/action that is listed.
B - website has all of the above and appears to be updated on a regular basis, has a photo page, and a way to donate online.
A - website has all of the above, plus a blog or chatroom, and links to Flickr/YouTube/MySpace/Facebook sites.

Governor:

Beverly Perdue - F
Beverly Perdue has no website available other than her official government page.

Richard Moore - C
Richard Moore has a state-run website, and a campaign website. The first thing I noticed, and I do mean the first thing, is that he is using the same picture on both sites, different background, but look at the hairs out of place and you'll see they must have done a bluescreen photo.
moore
That is lame enough to knock him down a grade, but I won't. His news section hasn't been updated in six months, his photo gallery is old and not updated, and he has limited contact information. All in all, a solid C grade.

Michael Munger - A
Not a Democrat, but as a loyal reader and poster here at BlueNC, worth a mention. He has donation buttons on the front page (PayPal again), he has an interesting "Visit Every County" page, he has a signature drive Flash graphic (assuming its Flash) on the header, all the standard information links in a sidebar...what's this, Podcasts? Sure enough, including an NPR interview. I'll tell you what, transfer to a real host (looks suspiciously like Blogger), tone down the graphics up top, and you get an A+. As it is, he lacks things like a Flickr page to track your activities, a good calendar, and videos of events - still he gets an A.

Lt. Governor:

Dan Besse - B
Mr. Beese has a campaign website up and running. He's got a donations button on the front page (is that Pay Pal?), an email update page hidden in the contact info, photo galleries that include an RSS feed(!), a news box where the stories aren't hyperlinked, and site navigation that is tiny but present. Style-wise it fizzles, but content wise it gets a B.

Hampton Dellinger - B+
As the youngest candidate in the bunch, I go in expecting more of Mr. Dellinger and his personal website. The site is not sexy, even though it has almost everything I am looking for in a candidate site. It has a big donate button in the right sidebar of every page. It's got a Press package page with photos (you need more and higher quality, and lose the jacket over the shoulder), it has his announcement video on the front page. I think it is a B+/A-; but it doesn't have links to any info on Flickr, Youtube, etc and it doesn't have a blog. So, B+ it is.

Pat Smathers - C+
Pat Smathers has a personal website. It is pretty basic, but he gets props for having this at the top of the front page: New! Read Pat's blog at http://www.bluenc.com/blog/psmathers2008
. So, I guess in some ways that gives him a blog. The rest is really bare-boned, though. So, I'm going to settle and give him C+. There is no online giving button (ActBlue people!), the info that is there is sparse, and it is mostly text-based.

James Harrell, III - N/A
I don't know, there was one mention in the N&O of his running, but just met him and there was no hints to that effect. Also, an absolutely horrid website that I won't link to out of respect. N/A until we find out he is running.

Walter Dalton - N/A

Same thing here, his website is a disaster but I haven't really heard that he is running except in that one N&O story.

Cynthia D. Brown - N/A
Same again, no facts I have heard, just wikirumors and no website at all.

A.B. Swindell -
I haven't really heard that he is running except in that one N&O story.

Democratic Leadership:

Speaker Joe Hackney - C+
Our new speaker has one of those Dreamweaver sites I was talking about. The news is occasionally updated (his election in November and his Speakership in January are the last two events), he has lots of contact info, including his personal email and information in Spanish. His links are updated, including the "Bills" he has submitted, which is pretty good. Regardless, not quite a B.

Speaker Pro Tempore William L. Wainwright - F

No website. Tsk, tsk.

Majority Leader Hugh Holliman - F
No website. Tsk, tsk.

Dan Blue - N/A
He gets a pass for his recent appointment to the House. He has no website and those of us who visit this site regularly know THAT is unacceptable for reasons that we won't go into. Tsk, tsk.

Verla Insko - C
Has a personal website, but hasn't been updated in parts since 2001/2002. Tsk, tsk.

All in all, I have to say that I am pretty damn disappointed in the candidate websites. We have a new playing field out there, the midcourt of which is online. You still need GOTV and the classic networks to score inside the red zone, but the nets will put you in range. Given that, it's disappointing that North Carolina, once again, is at the back of the pack. If only we had a central place in the state, close to the capital, where thousands of tech experts lived and worked and volunteered for their party.

If only

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Comments

what about

presidential candidates?

As for Walter Dalton, it has been known that he plans on running for Lt Gov for a long time. Dont believe me? He has $200,000 cash on hand.
For comparison, Jimmy Harrell has $50,000. Besse has 30,000. I doubt any other candidate has above 50K

Draft Brad Miller -- NC Sen ActBlue :::Petition

"Keep the Faith"

Actually

I was wrong. Hampton Dellinger had 277,000 at the end of the year.

Draft Brad Miller -- NC Sen ActBlue :::Petition

"Keep the Faith"

Walter Dalton

has been seen at a couple of events that were headlined by the Bev. Can't believe he's not running for something.
 
“All the world's a stage,
And all the men and women merely players.”
So enjoy the drama.

Want to know

What we are up against?
Fred Smith would get an A+

Our candidates for Governor need to get going, and quick, cause I am starting to get worried we are overconfident.

Draft Brad Miller -- NC Sen ActBlue :::Petition

"Keep the Faith"

Link me, cubby

and don't post obvious things that pain me to think about on my facebook wall.

I always wanted to be the avenging cowboy hero—that lone voice in the wilderness, fighting corruption and evil wherever I found it, and standing for freedom, truth and justice. - Bill Hicks

no

I refuse to link to him.

its senatorfredsmith.com or similar

Draft Brad Miller -- NC Sen ActBlue :::Petition

"Keep the Faith"

good

That is one arrogant SOB. No linkies for him.

oops. Is SOB considered cursing? Hope not. Nothing else fits when you're talking about ol' Fred.

"They took all the trees and put them in a tree museum Then they charged the people a dollar 'n a half just to see 'em. Don't it always seem to go that you don't know what you've got till it's gone? They paved paradise and put up a parking lot."

Dan Besse

You would have received an F in Journalism school for misspelling his name. One name wrong is an automatic F.

Harummph

Robin Hayes lied. Nobody died, but thousands of folks lost their jobs.



***************************
Vote Democratic, the ass you save may be your own.

Durn these aging eyes.....

my bad...completely out of line....I absolutely didn't read it right.... :)

Robin Hayes lied. Nobody died, but thousands of folks lost their jobs.



***************************
Vote Democratic, the ass you save may be your own.

I know

was just teasing.....

Robin Hayes lied. Nobody died, but thousands of folks lost their jobs.



***************************
Vote Democratic, the ass you save may be your own.

Hey, what would my website get?

And do I get bonus points for doing it myself? ;-)

I always wanted to be the avenging cowboy hero—that lone voice in the wilderness, fighting corruption and evil wherever I found it, and standing for freedom, truth and justice. - Bill Hicks

choosesam.com

forgot the site isn't in my sig here.

I always wanted to be the avenging cowboy hero—that lone voice in the wilderness, fighting corruption and evil wherever I found it, and standing for freedom, truth and justice. - Bill Hicks

B-

Draft Brad Miller -- NC Sen ActBlue :::Petition

"Keep the Faith"

I think it's about 8 years

until I can throw my hat into a council of state race.

I always wanted to be the avenging cowboy hero—that lone voice in the wilderness, fighting corruption and evil wherever I found it, and standing for freedom, truth and justice. - Bill Hicks

Response from Pat Smathers

Robert, thank you for taking the time to visit my website. I think your analysis of my current site is spot-on, which is why I’m planning to debut a dynamic new design later this month which will allow visitors to learn more about me and my ideas for a better North Carolina; share their feedback; stay abreast of my appearances and donate money. I am just now entering the fundraising stage of the race, having devoted the last year-and-a-half to meeting Democrats and local leaders across the state. I firmly believe voters have the right to get to know a candidate before he asks them for their hard-earned money.

I will be on the coast this weekend, addressing the North Carolina Fire Chiefs Association, while my son Zeb represents the campaign at the Buncombe County Democrats’ Second Annual Chili Cook-off. I hope you’ll consider stopping by to say hello.

Thank you again for your interest in my campaign, and I look forward to hearing what you think of my new website.

As to Richard Moore's photo

I don't think it was blue or green screen. Anyone could cut out his head that well with photoshop in no time and layer in as many different backgrounds as he wanted.
 
“All the world's a stage,
And all the men and women merely players.”
So enjoy the drama.

Ouch and duly noted...

Dan Blue - N/A
He gets a pass for his recent appointment to the House. He has no website and those of us who visit this site regularly know THAT is unacceptable for reasons that we won't go into. Tsk, tsk.

Ouch, and duly noted. It is unacceptable, all things considered, and will be corrected (at least, up to a B+... Flickr/YouTube/MySpace/Facebook may never happen).

cough

cough ((OLF?!?!)) cough cough

Draft Brad Miller -- NC Sen ActBlue :::Petition

"Keep the Faith"

Keep at 'em Robert

You'll bring our elected officials kicking and screaming into the 21st century. It's kinda fun to think about it.

Robin Hayes lied. Nobody died, but thousands of folks lost their jobs.



***************************
Vote Democratic, the ass you save may be your own.

This is a GREAT entry.

Thank you for doing the work and taking the time to capture what we're all experiencing.

Trying to reach elected officials is often like running the gauntlet at best - or more like wandering through a maze in the dark. It's almost like they really don't want to hear from you.

Freddie working the system

Just looked at Freddie's website, then went to his financials to see how much he spent on it.

What I found was quite interesting.

For the 2006 election(in a strong GOP district), here is what he shows on the books:

One lobbyiest was paid $20,000 for consulting. The owner, Frank Hill, was the initial Chief of Staff for Liddy Dole.

He also paid $35,000 to Karen Rotterman, who is one of the founders of dirty political ads in North Carolina.

On another item, he paid over $375,000 to the group that creates commericals for national GOP candidates. http://srcpmedia.com/

Also, he paid $325,000+ to himself.

...hmmmmmmm ethics?

http://www.sboe.state.nc.us/cf_pdf/2006/20070111_52553.pdf

put it into perspective

He could have won that race by spending 50,000. 100 to 200K if he wanted to not have to worry. Didnt he spend like a million or something disgusting?

Draft Brad Miller -- NC Sen ActBlue :::Petition

"Keep the Faith"

All cash spent on him?

My point on the large amounts of money, was to show that Freddie was a major component in filtering cash to other GOP candidates around the state.

The large amount spent of advertising and media was probably a result of him writing checks for other peoples ads around the state...or the NC GOP in general.

If someone found a receipt for the large expenditures that he made on advertising...it would probably be one lump sum (not itemzed)

By the way, his website was designed using a standard template, that can be bought online for $50-$100...all you do is add a few graphics, name the links, and add in a couple media clips.

....Ethics??

Just remember that "Hope is Only a Donkey's Ride Away"

hah!!

You made me laugh. You wrote "Freddie" and "ethics" in the same post.

Everybody thinks Fred made his money as a developer. He didn't. He only multiplied his money as a developer. He made his first million as a J.D. bill collector. hmm. How would a bill collector become a millionaire? Natural born SOB.

"They took all the trees and put them in a tree museum Then they charged the people a dollar 'n a half just to see 'em. Don't it always seem to go that you don't know what you've got till it's gone? They paved paradise and put up a parking lot."