Democrat Dirt Books Exposed
An apparent IT failure at the DCCC caused the books to become available via Google searches that combined targeted candidate’s names with opposition research search terms. They appeared in both Microsoft Word and PDF form (though Media Trackers had to convert the Word documents to PDF to upload them below) on a URL linked to a file sharing and storage service used by, among others, the DCCC.
The information found in the documents appears to be routine material one would expect to see. Biographical details, copies of land plots, voter registration records, tax information, business records, and press clippings and for incumbents voting records make up the bulk of the information. It is anticipated that individual Democratic campaigns and the DCCC itself will leverage the information into usable political fodder based on the dynamics of a particular race. Reading the books one can obtain a general outline of where Democrats are most likely to attack the Republican subject of the manual.
Although the sudden availability of the files may trump any timetable Democrats may have put together for distributing the information, their value to Republicans depends largely on the individual campaign’s own strategic response. The information – if damaging in any way – could be pre-empted or attacks based on the material could be headed off at a time when they are not quite so damaging as the final weeks of a campaign. As is often the case, the general dynamics of a race will impact the value of the early release almost as much as the substance of the intelligence itself.