A former top campaign advisor for President Barack Obama is training unions behind closed doors in Canada.
Mitch Stewart, who acted as the Battleground States Director for President Obama’s 2012 re-election campaign and is now working with the “Ready for Hillary” Super PAC (political action committee) devoted to electing Hillary Clinton in 2016 if she were to run, gave private briefings and workshops to Canadian union organizers last Thursday — a day before the Broadbent Institute ‘Progress Summit’ for political action officially kicked off at the Delta Ottawa City Centre in Ottawa, Ontario.
While Stewart would not give in-depth details about his presentation, he did say he touched base on the lessons learned from the Obama campaigns.
“We talked about the lessons that we learned on the Obama campaign of running an effective campaign, running an effective organization, talking about setting goals, what are the strategies that can help you achieve those goals, and then what are the tactics that can help your strategy achieve those goals, giving some real-world examples and then workshopping a little bit with some Canadian specific examples,” he told The Hill Times.
He continued, “We’ll talk a lot this afternoon about relationship building, telling the story itself, narrative building, we’ll talk a lot about goal setting, and kind of melding the relationship-building aspects of the campaign with the cold, hard data and analytics of a campaign and how you employ the organization to help you achieve goals that the data and analytics inform.”
Stewart also served as the Director of Organizing for America, the former community organizing project of the Democratic National Committee (DNC) founded after Obama was first elected. Later, he founded 270 Strategies, a consulting firm that includes other former members of the Obama team such as Jeremy Bird, Mark Beatty, and Betsy Hoover.
The Broadbent Summit included panels on building a green economy, indigenous rights, income inequality, and winning progressive campaigns in the United States and Canada. It attracted the likes of former Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard. Panels were moderated by Susan Delacourt of The Toronto Star, Canadian Press bureau chief Heather Scoffield, and Maclean’s magazine columnist Paul Wells.
Ed Broadbent, a Canadian social democratic politician and founder of the Broadbent Institute, hosted the conference. The Broadbent Institute was founded in 2011 to act as a vehicle for social democratic and progressive academics and to train activists.