Feingold Supporters On the Web: Early Activity
(March 31, 2006 grab)

Iowa for Feingold
About the Site:
Launched Jan. 16, 2006 by Patrick Stansberry.  He writes, "I have lived in central Iowa my entire life.  I headed off to college at the University of Iowa thinking I knew what I wanted to do with my life.  After graduating and working for a year, I decided to go back to school to get my elementary education degree.  I recently graduated [Dec. 2005] and will be teaching 2nd grade starting in August."

Patrick Stansberry (May 16, 2006 e-mail):
>Going back to Jan. 16, 2006, was there any specific event that prompted you to put up this site?
www.russforpresident.com started the 50 states campaign late in 2005.  I graduated from college in December and found myself with some extra time.  I had thought about starting a blog, but didnít know what to write about.  Knowing that Iowa is an important state in the political world, I thought what the heck and started Iowa for Feingold.

I am motivated to keep this blog updated by all the scandals and corruption in the news and the lack of accountability.  Sen. Feingold seems to be one of the only Senators who has the guts to say anything and provide a plan on how we can improve the lives of the average American.

>Have you met or worked for Sen. Feingold?  If not, when and how did you first become aware of and start to get interested in him?
I first became interested in Sen. Feingold in early 2005 after I saw him being interviewed on CSPAN.  Feingold was asked about his vote on the Patriot Act and against the Iraq War and he was able to explain those votes in an easy to understand manner.  That was starkly different than the Democrats last candidate.  In the interview you could tell that Feingold was a strong leader that stood on principles.

I met Sen. Feingold on his recent trip to Iowa at the end of April.  I attended two of the events that weekend and briefly talked to him and got his autograph.  It wasnít anything set up with his staff.  I was just one of the audience members at the events.

>Are you a political activist or veteran?  Have you been involved with a presidential or other campaign as a staffer or active volunteer?
I am new to this political activist thing.  I voted in the past (usually Democratic), but wasnít involved in any other manner.  In the 2004 election, I became interested in Howard Deanís campaign, but was moving and decided to go back to school, so I couldnít get involved.  I did volunteer locally for the Kerry campaign in the general election and then got involved with my county Democratic Party after the 2004 election and am very active on the internet.

>Have you done other independent web activity or blogs in the past?
I have been a frequent visitor to some political message boards for awhile, but Iowa for Feingold was my first experience blogging.  After a few weeks at it, I decided to start another blog, so I could talk about more than just Sen. Feingold.  [Taking his inspiration from Henry Wallace, Stansberry started the "Century for the Common Iowan" blog  on March 9, 2006; also in late March he put up a less frequently updated Marshall County Democrats blog].

>Anything you've learned from running this blog?
People want Democrats to stand up for something.  They see that Sen. Feingold stands on principle and isnít afraid of criticism.  They might not always agree with Sen. Feingold on every issue, but they are attracted to his principled stances.

Copyright © 2006  Eric M. Appleman/Democracy in Action