(We are sharing some of the hard work of some of our Libertarian candidates during the 2012 cycle as a way to say thank you for moving the Libertarian Party forward.)
Rupert made over 400 campaign stops since his announcement to run for Governor on August 28th, 2011. He has visited all 92 counties twice, and some several times. This included 21 county fairs, 14 days at the State Fair, 12 parades, 6 LGBT festivals, 15 Libertarian Party county conventions, 3 state party conventions, and the national Libertarian convention in Las Vegas, NV.
Rupert also held many public policy discussions on these stops, including meetings with eight Chambers of Commerce, two mass transit groups, one homeschooling association, the state insurance board, twice with the State Employee’s Association, the Governor’s office on the Affordable Care Act, three legislative study sessions, 12 official school visits, three neighborhood association visits, four meetings with township trustees, five tea parties, five Fraternal Orders of Police, three state prisons, and over 100 small business visits.
At these events, Rupert has given out a tremendous amount of materials, including 7,500 tri-folds since January, 13,000 pieces geared toward the left since June, and 25,000 pieces geared toward the right since August, and 20,000 of the Libertarian Party of Indiana’s slate pieces on Election Day. Rupert has also given out 2,800 copies of his autobiography, 6,000 small buttons, and 2,000 large buttons. A total of 2,750 shirts were given out, including the 750 personally tie-dyed by Rupert. The campaign also distributed 2,000 yard signs, 3,000 bumper stickers, and 5,000 11×17 posters. He also has signed over 15,000 promotional pictures. Over 7,000 of those autographs came during his 14 days at the state fair. Lines to meet the former Survivor star were generally around 20 minutes. During this time volunteers were able to give out thousands of pieces of literature on Rupert’s campaign, other Libertarian campaigns, register people to vote, and ask for donations. The vast majority of Rupert’s fundraising was through grassroots cash donations. The campaign registered 832 people to vote.
All of this was organized by three full-time senior staffers who did not earn a paycheck. Evan McMahon served as campaign manager, Troy Hill as media director, and Jeremiah Hodgkin served as event coordinator. Over the last three months, 15 volunteers each have given at least 10 hours a week to the campaign to help staff outreach events, fulfill orders, deliver signs, and to keep the campaign running successfully. The campaign was run on $75,000+ total, and is a record for any Indiana Libertarian. Rupert was also the first Indiana Gubernatorial with a campaign RV provided by Mount Comfort RV and wrapped by Green Signs. The campaign worked out of a 3,500 square foot office in downtown Indianapolis office.
Rupert also saw an unprecedented amount of media for a Libertarian Gubernatorial candidate. Rupert was covered in 25 front page news stories on his efforts and 685 individual newspaper articles covered his race. The Washington Times named him one of the top five political superstars to watch this Election 2012 and said he “is the epitome of a hometown hero and arguably the most inspiring rising political star this year.” He was included in three statewide debates, participated in over 50 television interviews, and has done at least three radio interviews a week since April.
Rupert has also been a social media star. He is the only one of the three contestants for Governor that has regularly engaged supporters online. Several times a week he sits down to answers dozens of questions from supporters. Since starting his facebook page in April, Rupert now has more than any other LP candidate in the nation except Gary Johnson and more than any LP state party at 5,400 likes and growing. One of the keys to the growth of the facebook page has been the 6,095 pictures taken by Troy Hill. Hill, a professional photographer, has taken high quality photographs for followers to tag themselves in the event photo album which puts the photo in the newsfeed of the supporter. He has also done two Reddit.com AMA where followers of the site can ask him any question they’d like. The first received over 1,800 upvotes. Since launching his YouTube Channel in February, Rupert has had 5,216 video views. His website has seen 163,909 page views and 64,602 unique visitors since its launch on August 28, 2011.