By Peter Daou and Tom Watson
On June 11, 2015, we launched #HillaryMen with a post that explained why we support Hillary for president:
Hillary's unwavering commitment to public service, progressive policies and unparalleled experience make her one of the best (and best qualified) candidates ever to seek the presidency.
We are motivated first by her experience and her vision of progress and inclusion. Having long fought for the rights of the disenfranchised and battled to extend the American social contract, Hillary can lay claim to the mantle of Roosevelt, Truman, Kennedy and Johnson.
We are equally motivated by our passion to combat the rampant sexism and misogyny plaguing our world, the pervasive oppression of women and girls that stains every corner of this planet.
Three months after introducing #HillaryMen, we’re awed and gratified by the response to our initiative. Hundreds of thousands of shares, signups and site visits demonstrate beyond a doubt that there is a powerful underground movement supporting Hillary.
To date, we have not been paid a single dollar for this project; we have not spent a single dollar to promote it; we have not received any media coverage; we have not created a Facebook or Twitter page. All we have done is write from our hearts and post on HillaryMen.com and on our personal pages. The rest is done by a highly engaged network of #HillaryMen and #HillaryWomen, who are passionate, dedicated and motivated to help Hillary overcome the ultimate gender barrier.
We draw our energy from Hillary and her supporters and we do our best to channel that energy back with actionable analysis and insight about the election process. We try to hold the media and commentariat accountable for unfair coverage and we speak out forcefully against gender bias whenever and wherever we see it. We don't sugarcoat negative news (which occurs in every campaign) and we rely on real data and our own experience as communications professionals to help clarify the ever-changing landscape in a long election cycle.
We attribute the widespread sharing of #HillaryMen content to Hillary's deep grassroots support. For example:
The Great American Brainwash: Half a Billion Dollars to Turn the Public against Hillary (19,500+ social shares in one month)
Time for the U.S. Media to Apologize to Hillary Clinton (7,500+ social shares in four days)
NEW: Report Proves Quinnipiac Hillary ‘Liar’ Poll Was False and Slanderous (7,500 social shares in 48 hours, 10,000 in ten days)
The 2016 race is just kicking into gear. Hillary has been under intense fire since the day she announced. She is the central target of nearly two dozen candidates. Shadowy conservative groups led by the likes of Karl Rove are spending hundreds of millions to smear her. Media coverage has been a disgrace, with reporters and pundits transparently manipulating the public against her. Sexism rears its ugly head daily.
Through it all, Hillary is rock solid, rolling out policy proposals and connecting with voters across the country. Withstanding this firestorm is reason enough to elect her – no other candidate could do it.
It is no surprise that Hillary Clinton's leadership motivates an underground army. The surprise will be when her detractors see that army show up on Election Day.
Peter Daou and Tom Watson founded #HillaryMen to provide actionable analysis of the 2016 campaign focusing on the gender barrier in U.S. politics. Peter is a former senior digital adviser to Hillary Clinton and the Clinton Global Initiative. He is a veteran of two presidential campaigns (Kerry '04 and Clinton '08). Tom is an author and Columbia University lecturer who advises companies and non-profits on social activism.