We Build Victories

Posted April 9, 2008 at 6:52pm

Republican consultants Mark Campbell, Eva Campbell and Bob Holste have joined forces to form Campbell Holste Inc., a full-service political consulting firm with offices in Parsippany, N.J., and Washington, D.C.

[IMGCAP(1)]“If winning is important to you, hiring Campbell Holste is the best decision you’ll ever make,” Holste’s former employer, Rep. Phil English (R-Pa.), said in a statement released by the firm.

Campbell Holste’s slogan is “We Build Victories.” The firm plans to live up to that during what remains a difficult political environment for Republicans by catching Democrats in areas where Campbell Holste believes they have outperformed the GOP –– the Internet and new technology.

“We have let the Democrats get ahead of us,” Holste said in a statement. “A centerpiece of our firm’s philosophy is a commitment to bridge that gap by bringing cutting-edge technology to the table for our clients.”

“We have web-based weapons at our disposal,” Holste continued, “that are truly revolutionizing the way campaigns are run and won.”

Both the Campbells and Holste have long résumés in the political consulting business.

Mark and Eva Campbell, whose New Jersey firm previously was known as Campbell and Campbell, advised former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani’s presidential campaign, the National Republican Senatorial Committee and various House and Senate campaigns.

Holste’s most recent position was as an adviser to Giuliani’s presidential bid. Prior to that, he served as English’s chief of staff and worked at the National Republican Congressional Committee, with a focus on incumbent retention.

Risa-ing Star. Risa Heller, Sen. Charles Schumer’s (D-N.Y.) former communications director, has accepted a similar position with New York Gov. David Paterson (D).

“My Administration will benefit greatly from Ms. Heller’s insight and experience,” Paterson said in a statement. Paterson, the former lieutenant governor, took office last month after then-Gov. Eliot Spitzer (D) resigned amid scandal.

Heller joins the new Paterson administration from Global Strategy Group, a New York consulting firm where she served as senior vice president. Heller joined the firm last year after leaving Schumer’s Senate office.

Before joining Schumer, Heller served as communications director to Rep. Jane Harman (D-Calif.). Heller also held legislative and communications positions at Rabinowitz Media, Hadassah and the Anti-Defamation League.

Virile Hires. Virilion this week hired Democratic political strategist Michael Meehan as senior vice president, with Melissa Boasberg coming on board as a vice president.

Virilion, a D.C.-based nonpartisan firm, advises its clients on Internet campaigning and messaging.

Meehan previously served as senior adviser to Sen. John Kerry’s (D-Mass.) 2004 presidential bid. Prior to that, Meehan was the vice president of strategy and politics for NARAL Pro-Choice America, where he ran the 501(c)(3) and 501 (c)(4) programs.

In the previous cycle, Meehan was a top aide to Sen. Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.), managing her Senate office and operating as the chief strategist of her 2006 re-election.

Boasberg advised Kerry’s 2004 presidential bid and was an integral part of his online fundraising effort. She later helped launch Friends of John Kerry and Keeping America’s Promise, Kerry’s political action committee.

Virilion has offices in Washington, D.C.; Austin, Texas; Boston and Los Angeles.

Raising the Barr. Former Rep. Bob Barr (R-Ga.) still is deciding whether to seek the Libertarian Party nomination for president. But in preparation for that possibility, Barr has tapped Dallas political consultant Russell Verney as an adviser.

Verney, who advises independent candidates and issue advocacy groups, currently is serving Barr in a volunteer capacity. In 1996, Verney served as billionaire presidential candidate Ross Perot’s campaign manager.

Verney, a founding member of the now- defunct Reform Party that Perot led, also advised Perot during his Independent presidential bid in 1992.

“It’s a chaotic time,” Verney said in a brief telephone interview, regarding the early stages of a presidential campaign. “I offered to volunteer.”

Barr’s decision to run for president as a Libertarian could depend on his ability to secure the support of party delegates in advance of its May 22-26 nominating convention in Denver, Verney said.

Also helping Barr out while he decides whether to carry the Libertarian banner this fall is Audrey Mullen of Alexandria, Va.-based Advocacy Ink. Mullen is handling public relations and taking media calls on behalf of Barr’s presidential exploratory committee.

Among Mullen’s other notable clients is the American Conservative Union.

Who Ya Gonna Call? Fraudbusters is a new Web site that is sympathetic to the Democratic Party and was created and launched by the Ballot Initiative Strategy Center.

According to the center, its mission is to “expose the conservative political operatives, for-profit signature gathering companies, and right-wing funders dependent on fraud to get their ballot initiative gimmicks on the ballot.”

Fraudbusters can be found online at www.stopballotfraud.org. The Ballot Initiative Strategy Center tracks signature fraud in all states with a ballot-initiative process.

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