Going into Election Day, the Romney campaign pinned its Get Out the Vote hopes on Project ORCA, which it described as the "newest, unprecedented and most technologically advanced plan to win the 2012 presidential election." For a campaign led by a management consultant, it's surprising the description wasn't even more market lingo-y, "an enterprise-based scalable solution to deliver electoral resources under a six-sigma compliant matrix."
The idea was to keep track of who had voted and which voters were still outstanding using a web-based application operated by over 30,000 volunteers.
Now, thanks to Romney supporter and Ace of Spades blogger John Ekdahl, we know how it worked out…
By 2PM, I had completely given up. I finally got ahold of someone at around 1PM and I never heard back. From what I understand, the entire system crashed at around 4PM. I'm not sure if that's true, but it wouldn't surprise me. I decided to wait for my wife to get home from work to vote, which meant going very late (around 6:15PM). Here's the kicker, I never got a call to go out and vote. So, who the hell knows if that end of it was working either.
Other volunteers had similar issues…
Felt used. Burned. Project ORCA ended up with a harpoon in its side and washed up on shore, lifeless.
We were told we were the tip of the spear. We felt like we were the butt of the joke.
It sounds like a complete disaster, but is unlikely to be the primary source of the GOP's electoral debacle. After all, the Republicans have lost the popular vote in 5 of the past 6 presidential elections. And the realization that this was going to be a tough hill to climb was implicit in Project ORCA: if you name a program designed to get Republicans to the polls after a threatened species, how hopeful can you be about your electoral prospects?
Photo by Valery Hache/AFP/Getty Images
Tags: Internet, Mitt Romney, Republicans