Leach Announces Campaign Team

Daylin Leach portrait 2013 lores
Daylin Leach

State Sen. Daylin Leach unveiled the team of staffers and consultants who will manage his bid for Congress. The list includes some familiar names.

Leach is the second candidate to file in the race for Rep. Allyson Schwartz’s congressional seat (she is expected to run for Governor rather than re-election). Dr. Valerie Arkoosh, a physician and activist, has also filed to run.

State Rep. Brendan Boyle (D-Phila) and former Philadelphia City Controller Jonathan Saidel also appear to be gearing up for the campaign.

“This is the best team that anyone could put together to run and win a congressional campaign in Philadelphia and Montgomery County, and I feel very fortunate to have the opportunity to work with them,” said Leach. Several of the names are staffers and vendors who worked with him at the Pa. Senate Democratic Campaign Committee.

In other PA-13 news, progressive leader Howie Klein of Down With Tyranny and his Blue America PAC endorsed Leach, calling him, “a real leader and a courageous fighting progressive.”

Here are the politicos who comprise Leach’s campaign. Their bios are from the Leach campaign release:

Senior Advisor: Aren Platt
Aren Platt worked as Executive Director of the Pennsylvania Senate Democratic Campaign Committee in 2012, managing the election efforts and directly overseeing each of the targeted Senate races. Prior to that, he has worked on campaigns in Philadelphia and across Pennsylvania at the local, state, and federal levels including Ed Rendell’s 2006 gubernatorial campaign and Chris Carney’s 2008 congressional campaign. In 2012, Platt was named as one of PoliticsPA’s top political operatives.

Fundraising Consultant: Vanessa Gervasi DeRose
Vanessa Gervasi DeRose is a veteran fundraiser with more than 10 years of experience raising political funds across Pennsylvania. In 2010, DeRose served as the finance director for the Pennsylvania House Democratic Campaign Committee, where she led the Committee’s efforts raising a record $8 million. In the past, DeRose raised funds for candidates at all levels of Democratic politics including Congresswoman Allyson Schwartz and State Rep. Mike Gerber. DeRose came to Pennsylvania in 2001 to work on Ed Rendell’s 2002 gubernatorial campaign where she served as Deputy Finance Director helping raise more than $44 million.

Mail: Dan Fee, The Echo Group
The Echo Group is one of Pennsylvania’s premier strategic communications firms, specializing in political campaigns and difficult public policy related issues. Led by Dan Fee, The Echo Group has worked with candidates for federal, state, and local public office. Among its successes are Ed Rendell’s 2002 and 2006 gubernatorial campaigns, Seamus McCaffery’s 2007 Supreme Court election, Seth Williams’ 2009 primary victory as Philadelphia’s District Attorney, and the Pennsylvania Senate Democratic Campaign Committee’s pick-up of three seats in 2012. Fee has been named one of PoliticsPA’s top political operatives.

Media Consultants: Tad Devine and Julian Mulvey, Devine Mulvey Longabaugh
Together, the partners of their firm have produced advertising campaigns for 25 winning U.S. Senate and gubernatorial races, 22 winning U.S. House races, and 10 winning campaigns for president and prime minister around the world. In 2012 they helped the Pennsylvania Senate Democratic Campaign Committee pick-up three seats in the state Senate, the largest pick-up for PA Democrats in 42 years. Devine and Mulvey’s experience in the state goes back a decade and a half, and includes Lynne Abraham’s victory for Philadelphia District Attorney, Bob Casey for Auditor General, and Chris Carney’s story-book victory for U.S. Congress in 2006.

Polling: Marc Silverman, Thirty-Ninth Street Strategies
Marc Silverman started Thirty-Ninth Street Strategies in January 2010 after spending four years at a nationally recognized polling firm. In 2012, Silverman polled for Congressman Matt Cartwright, who won one of the most closely watched and hotly contested congressional primaries in Pennsylvania in 2012, and for the Pennsylvania Senate Democratic Campaign Committee during their historic 2012 cycle. Prior to becoming a pollster, Silverman managed several campaigns from Governor to U.S. Congress. Silverman also worked for the National Economic Council in the White House during the Clinton Administration, focusing on energy, telecommunications, and environmental issues.

Campaign Counsel: Adam Bonin
Adam Bonin is one of the region’s most sought-after and respected attorneys in the political law field, with deep experience in federal, state, and local campaign finance law as well as voter protection matters. Bonin served as deputy county counsel for Obama for America in Philadelphia in the 2012 election, and was lead Election Day counsel for all courtroom matters. In addition, Bonin is the chair of NetRoots Nation, is a native of the 13th Congressional District – born and raised in Somerton, and is a graduate of George Washington High School, Amherst College, and The University of Chicago Law School.

Deputy Finance Director: Meghan Lane
Meghan Lane has most recently worked on Kathy Boockvar’s congressional campaign. Bookvar was the EMILY’s list endorsed candidate and raised $1.5 million.

Disclosure: Bonin does legal work for Ceisler Media and Issue Advocacy, whose principal Larry Ceisler is an owner of PoliticsPA.

4 Responses

  1. This is going to be a crowded primary, at least for a little while. Arkoosh and Leach are already declared, and Boyle is all but assured to run. I can’t imagine those three would be the only ones. So I imagine that there are a bunch of consultants sniffing around the race, and it makes sense to lock them down before hand. Sure he probably has to pay a retainer, but he gets advice.

    More telling is that he’s bringing on finance staff. That’s a good sign. If Leach can be the progressive *and* jump out to an early fundraising lead, it’s hard to see where there will be room to beat him.

  2. Dick-
    Well, I wouldn’t worry too much yet.

    1) Daylin would be awesome on the House floor/C-SPAN and have bigger megaphone for key issues.

    2) If he doesn’t win primary, he doesn’t have to give up his St. Senate seat.

  3. Sen. Leach’s ambitions are unfortunate for the party state wide. He replaced Bob Mellow as state senate campaign chairman and won three more seats last year. Mellow had perhaps the worst record as a legislative campaign chair in the country. Leach was a breath of fresh air and vitality. He is also one of the very few Democrat state senators who can walk and chew gum at the same time. He will be missed!

  4. That’s a lot of staff, for one year out from the primary. Most of the time there’s nothing going on with a campaign until late Fall, and too often a struggle to find candidates to run.

    Clearly, this seat is an easy-Dem seat so all there really is going to be is a giant battle among a half dozen candidates, despite little daylight between them on the major issues or Dem credentials.

    We could save $5-$10 million in primary expenses (money better spent in swing districts), if the candidates just settled it over a game of darts, and the winner picked up the bar tab. 🙂

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