The National Democratic Training Committee (NDTC) is a 527 political action committee which trains Democratic candidates to run for public office. To this end, the NDTC provides candidates with online fundraising services, management and field guidance, messaging and communications, and finance training for campaigns. It also offers free online courses and training for Democratic candidates interested in running for local office.
The NDTC was established by Kelly Dietrich in 2016. Dietrich, a Democratic Party campaign operative, consulted with U.S. Representative Cheri Bustos (D-Illinois), who founded one-day candidate training seminar Build the Bench, as he created the NDTC.
NDTC was designed to be an online training platform for Democratic candidates interested in running for office. According to its own figures, over 10,000 Democratic candidates have signed up for the National Democratic Training Committee’s online training school.
The National Democratic Training Committee partners with Democratic Party and left-of-center groups such as the American Federation of State County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) government worker union; ActBlue, a left-wing fundraising service; Emerge America, a PAC that recruits female candidates for the Democratic Party; Progressive Change Campaign Committee; Communications Workers of America (CWA); and other left-of-center organizations.
The NDTC has provided training to candidates in numerous local elections. Some notable NDTC candidates are Shelly Hutchinson, candidate for State Representative in Georgia’s 107th district; Tom Tull, candidate for West Virginia House of Delegates in district 38; Amelia Marquez, candidate for Montana State Representative in district 52; and David Williams, candidate for Oklahoma State Representative in district 95. These candidates have all gone through the online training offered by the NDTC and are officially partnered with the organization.
In 2016, the NDTC relied on donations from 183 individuals, receiving around $851,400 in total contributions. In 2018, NDTC received donations from 725 individuals and various 501(c)(5) organizations. The most notable contribution NDTC has received came from American Federation of State County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME). AFSCME, the largest union for non-teacher government workers, has donated $50,000 to NDTC in both 2017 and 2018.
In the 2016 election cycle, NDTC spent a total of $851,400. NDTC spent around $62,000 on fundraising with about $29,000 of that sum being applied to fundraising consulting. It also spent $26,200 on administrative activities.
In the 2018 election cycle, the NDTC increased its expenditures to about $4.1 million. In that year, the PAC spent $1.5 million on fundraising, $1.3 million of which went to fundraising consulting services. The NDTC also spent about $814,000 on salaries, wages, and benefits during the 2018 election cycle.
The NDTC provided to various venders throughout the 2016 and 2018 election cycles. In 2016, the top vendors and recipients included several different organizations. The top vendors were Mothership Strategies, receiving around $117,585; ActBlue, which received around $33,600; and two left-wing magazines: The Nation, receiving about $12,500, and Mother Jones, receiving $10,000.
In 2018, the most notable NDTC recipients included Mothership Strategies, which received around $1.5 million from NDTC; payroll processor Paychex, receiving around $297,000; ActBlue, receiving $157,000; and The Nation, which received $74,000.