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Message Box: One Year Later and What Comes Next
A year of newsletters in the books with some big plans for the year(s) to come
One year ago, I launched Message Box. We were in the middle of the most important election in history, contending with a raging pandemic and massive amounts of disinformation, as well as running against a president willing to lie, cheat, and steal his way to victory. I wanted to write about what was happening in a way that was designed for the people trying to defeat that president.
I have spent twenty years writing memos to candidates, senators, party leaders, and a president giving strategic advice on what to say, how to say it, and to whom to say it. I’ve released insider information to insiders. But since then, politics and political communications have changed dramatically. The old model of political insiders talking to media insiders and hoping the message gets to the public does not work anymore. I wanted this newsletter to serve as a strategy memo for the activists and organizers who were doing everything they could with every moment they had to save the country from Trumpism.
I had no idea if people were interested in this form of political writing. I didn’t know if they would read it, let alone subscribe to it. A year later, Message Box has grown and expanded in ways I never imagined possible. So, for that I thank you.
Stay in the Fight
With Trump almost in the rearview mirror, I know a lot of people had hoped to take a step back from the firehose of political news. I get it. Trump lost, but Trumpism is still ascendant and can feel overwhelming. Our exhaustion is not contingent on the news, but on what Republicans have done to rewrite our laws and our history. We must stay engaged or they will succeed in 2022 and 2024.
This year, there will be critical elections in California and Virginia, a battle for voting rights legislation, a hugely progressive jobs and families plan on the table in Congress, and a fight against gerrymandering all across the nation.
Donald Trump, Mitch McConnell, and the rest of the political arsonists in the Republican Party are betting on our folks to step back.
What’s to Come
could not be more grateful for the smart and engaging community of Message Box readers. Those of you who joined in the early days as annual subscribers will soon be asked to renew your subscription. I hope you will do so. Those of you that haven’t yet decided to become a paid subscriber:
Paid subscribers receive:
Access to a weekly Q&A;
A weekly email with a curated list of articles on politics, polling, and policy; and
I have been working on the next phase of this newsletter. In the coming months, I want to try out some new features for paid subscribers including:
Deep dives into the big Senate primaries to help subscribers make informed decisions about whom to support;
Regular recommendations on political books and perhaps a Message Box book club of sorts; and
More frequent, quick messaging guides like this one on the Biden budget plan.
Thank you for all the support over the last year and everything you are doing to fight for progressive values and against the rising tide of Trumpism.