Alright party peoples, Friday is the end of the fundraising quarter for all candidates at state and federal levels. Giving by the 30th allows them to boast your contribution when the numbers come out in July (extremely important for getting people to take your candidate seriously) and allows them a hard number to use for balancing their checkbook.
I know giving sucks, I know we're all short on cash, but the cold, hard truth is that over 9 in 10 races are won by the guy with the most money. You want your man (or woman) to win? You've got to open your wallet.
In Congress, like with anything else, you get what you pay for.
Some of you live in places where your House race isn't looking so hot. In that case, you can give to senate/gubernatorial/other races. In Texas, things are looking pretty dire, with relatively few Dems with a good shot at winning (John Courage and Chet Edwards being the best ones) but hey, you never know if Bell, Van Os, Radnofsky, or Ricketts can win unless you try, right?
In South Bend, we're looking a little better: Donnelly has a real shot at taking down Chocola. This district is normally Dem, and normally is represented by a Dem. Chocola is a fluke, and we can prove it. Give at Donnelly for Congress.
The other race I gave to this quarter is Jim Webb, who's running for Virginia Senator against George Allen. This guy (aside from having a great name) is one hell of a candidate. He's a died-in-the-wool progressive libertarian who won 6, yes 6, medals in Vietnam before serving as Secretary of the Navy during the Reagan Administration. First in his class at Quantico, JD from Georgetown, and netroots favorite who beat the dogshit out of the establishment candidate in the primary in what is probably the fastest "bluing" state in the Union, a win for Webb would not only mean another progressive in the Senate and a step closer to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, but in all likelihood the political destruction of one of the Right's primo picks for the presidency in 2008.
Ned Lamont in Connecticut, John Tester in Montana, Sheldon Whitehouse in Rhode Island, and Sherrod Brown in Ohio are other great candidates who are close to beating shitty incumbents.
Other great pickup opportunities can be found at ActBlue.
A great final option is the Democracy Bond. These are monthly donations given to the DNC in an effort to put Howard Dean's 50-state strategy into action. It's a worthy cause, and a great alternative if you can't give a lot all at once (my Democracy Bond is for a mere $10/month, but it's gonna add up to a lot more than I could give otherwise). Going this route also gives the DNC a steady income so that they plan ahead with their money, and don't have to reevaluate their finances every month.
You want a good government? You get what you pay for. Do what has to be done.