Why Blog Con Mattered So Much

Last week, FreedomWorks’ hosted Blog Con — bringing together America’s top conservative bloggers from around the nation to connect in Washington, DC. Political conferences are nothing special but this one was different. FreedomWorks’ Tabitha Hale tracked down the Right’s most excellent online personalities — and got them all together for an entire weekend. In my opinion, such a feat was monumental because each one’s platform will now be multiplied.

There were a couple of conservative bloggers from nearly every state. And these are the passionate kind — the folks that make a real difference. They are excited about how to make the message more effective in the right way. Making these personal connections served as a critical foundation for the conservative cause moving forward. Most of these folks are now connected in several ways online and each one’s message will be amplified substantially because of it.

As a former blogger who now works with bloggers in an outreach capacity on Capitol Hill, I believe the relationship between Members of Congress and the conservative online community is one of particular significance. Being in DC gave these bloggers an opportunity to speak to GOP staffers and make those important connections as well.

I’ve been working with some of the conference attendees for several years and finally got a chance to meet them face-to-face. We easily recognized one another via Twitter avatars and Facebook pages but shaking hands and actually saying hello was refreshing. It’s nice to have an online presence but if you never make it personal, it just doesn’t mean as much.

This was a jolly group, excited no doubt about promising Republican prospects this year. They also seemed genuinely excited and happy to meet fellow bloggers who will become their conservative teammates in the coming political years.

Most conservative bloggers have 9-5 jobs with no political connection. They sacrifice their time to keep up the fight online. They report out of principle and dig because it’s the right thing to do. Their online presence is built on passion and a conviction to hold people accountable. It’s not just politics — it’s a calling to many, an obligation to do good work because they can, because if they don’t, no one will do it for them.

I have the upmost respect for the men and women who’ve taken on this task, working tirelessly in their counties and not accepting the status quo. Blog Con was important in connecting many of these people and I was honored to be at the gathering. Thanks to all who made it happen. If I didn’t meet you at Blog Con — Tweet me or email me at [email protected] and say hello!

*Full disclosure: Ericka Andersen works for the House Republican Conference and blogs at GOP.gov.

Ericka Andersen

Ericka Andersen is a Mid-Western girl from Indiana who came to DC after falling in love with conservative politics. She currently works for the House Republican Conference.

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