OUCH! “Green Energy” Guy Abandons Obama Fundraiser for Lack of Interest

Poor Jay Cole. The Duluth “green energy” advocate (and local TV producer) had a beautiful dream: He was going to launch a 50-day fundraising quest, leading up to his 50th birthday, with the goal of raising one million dollars for the reelection of President Obama. He created the “Jay Cole for Obama” PAC, loaded his camera and gear, and hit the streets.

And then, this happened.

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But have no fear. Over the next few days, Cole did indeed interview a few folks with some, well, amazing ideas about how to raise a million bucks for the prez. Down by the ol’ rescue mission, Jay met Jesse (a gentleman who in no way appears to have a substance abuse problem), who suggested using his “lawn care service” to help Obama.

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Frankly, as little trust as I’d have in Jesse to take care of my lawn, I would trust Obama even less…

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Jay also met Brian, who had the amazing idea of launching “Change for Change,” in which Obama supporters would beg for spare change and send it to the president.

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Brian may be more prescient than he thinks. Depending on how things go in November, one day we might actually see Obama having to resort to that very plan…

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Ah, who’m I kidding? He’ll always have an Ivy League professorship to fall back on.

Finally, Jay met Eric, a man with tragic head and neck palsy. Yet even with that disability, Eric managed to come up with the brilliant idea that the president should have an interactive website. Because of course no one’s ever thought of that before.

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And then Jay Cole called off the project.

I was struck by the lack of enthusiasm that greeted Jay’s ambitious failure. Minnesota was heavily pro-Obama in 2008, with Duluth (and surrounding areas) showing especially high numbers for Obama. So what happened?

I emailed Jay Cole (who seems like a genuinely sincere guy), and we had the following exchange:

Me: In your “Day 1″ video, when you couldn’t find an Obama supporter, to what do you attribute that? My understanding is that Obama won Duluth handily in ’08 — by about ten percentage points. Do you see a decline of support for him in your city? And, if so, what’s your opinion as to why?

Jay Cole: When I started the “Obama 1 in 50″ project I was envisioning that more people would engage and it would gain some viral exposure on Youtube….When I posted the first video I was exploring from a journalistic perspective. Most of the locations I have filmed at have been in what is called Canal Park which is a big tourist area and people from all over the country who would be more upper middle class.  Every time I have gone out to film it has been 60% -70% against Obama.

The Duluth area is very much controlled by the DFL (the Minnesota Democratic–Farmer–Labor Party) because of strong labor influence.

As to a decline in support it is hard to say right now.

“60% – 70% against Obama?” Wow. Whatever the polls say, and however trustworthy (or untrustworthy) they may be, this type of on-the-ground experience by a fervent Obama supporter surely does not bode well for the president’s campaign.

But cheer up, Mr. President. You’ll always have Jesse’s “lawn care service” to fall back on.

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