It has been said by some who visit here that the Internet doesn't really matter to a congressional campaign. Of course, I've got my own bias. I see the Internet as a tool for an unprecedented shift in campaign power, enabling candidates who are intelligent enough to use it effectively to transcend traditional limitations.
So where does the truth lie? I encourage you to look at this morning's Google rankings and decide for yourself. Go to Google and type in: "arcuri for congress".
Here's what you'll find:
First listing: Arcuri Stay Our DA! - a blog that asks Michael Arcuri to drop out of the congressional race and honor his promise to serve out the term he was just elected to serve four months ago.
Second listing: A page from FEC Watch that lists contributions recently made by the United Food and Commercial Workers Union. Arcuri got a five thousand dollar check from that union on January 26, 2006. Five thousand dollars is not shabby - that's more than little voters like you or me are allowed to contribute.
Third listing: The Arcuri for Congress official web site.
The Arcuri for Congress web site should not have third billing. It ought to have the number one ranking, but it doesn't, because the Arcuri for Congress campaign hasn't had time to get enough links in to the site to promote it to its proper place (I've done my part to help out with this, adding links in these blog postings, as well as over in the sidebar).
The result is that, this morning, with newspaper articles prominently discussing Arcuri's campaign announcement, people will be going online to find the Arcuri for Congress web site to try to find out more, but what they'll find first is a web site that's critical of Arcuri's campaign. Not until the week before the primary will there be such an opportunity to get traffic to the campaign site, and the opportunity has been missed because of a lack of preparation of a good online strategy.
If I were on the Arcuri for Congress campaign, I'd be giving a call to the campaign's Internet support team, Quadsimia and ask them what they're doing to overcome this problem.
But that's me. I think that the Internet matters. What do you think?