Elephant Ears

This blog is dedicated to the political happenings in the Valley and Southwest Virginia. As the the name implies, this blog will have posts based on what is heard by this elephant's (GOPer's) ears. It is also a great treat to get while at the county fair or a carnival.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

72-Hour Program

This is sort of an open thread on the 72-hour program. I believe it was a good idea run badly. People were called too many times (which aggrevated them) and also we still need poll workers. Having no poll presence to hand out sample ballots, etc is stupid. Make sure the people who goto the polls know who to vote for. Those are the most important people to help.
I suggest next time that we make calls to identify voters and remind them to vote, at most twice. More than that and people get aggrevated. Also, we should not pull people away from the polls to make calls on election day. We should have enough people to do both if thats needed. If not, polls come first. I think the way it was run caused the 72-Hour Program to be a failure.
Thats just my opinion, what does everyone else think?

17 Comments:

  • At 11/17/2005 7:17 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I disagree about putting workers at poll sites versus turning them out. It's doubtful that anyone makes the choice for whom to vote once they arrive at the polling site. No GOP voter is getting there and looking around saying "Who is our nominee for Governor???" It's more important to push non-likely voters to go vote then to tell somebody that's already there what to do. Additionally, most, if not all local city/county Dem. committee have elderly volunteers that can't/won't do anything besides hand out sample ballot.

     
  • At 11/17/2005 8:18 AM, Anonymous saywhat?? said…

    I do not think ANY recorded messages over the phone encourage people to vote. Local candidates tell me that poll presence is very important -- not to hand out sample ballots, which I always find insulting, but to introduce themselves (with literature) to voters who may be showing up to vote for state or national office and know little about local candidates.

    Finally no 72-hour program can save a weak candidate (for example, Kilgore) running against a strong one (as in Kaine). I don't know if your 72-hour program failed or not. Your candidate failed.

     
  • At 11/17/2005 12:16 PM, Blogger GOPHokie said…

    Well we can argue about how strong a candidate Kaine was, but I am in no way saying that the 72-Hour program was the cause of Kilgore's loss.
    I do take issue with the idea that all GOPs know who to vote for when coming to the polls. I have worked too many times when people come up to you as if they have no idea who to vote for, and are in dire need of a sample ballot.

     
  • At 11/17/2005 4:14 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Was I the only one that got a ballot with little Rs and Ds beside the names? The sample ballot is a museum piece from the Byrd days. With the exception of local races, the party id should be on there.

     
  • At 11/18/2005 12:48 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    The reality is, those people who are going to turn out do, and those that don't by and large don't. People vote or not based on two things: whether they _always_ vote anyway, and if they are wavering on whether or not to vote, it's whether they are turned off by the campaigns.

    I have no doubts at all that the 72hr program hurt, instead of helping our turnout. This was an exhausting campaign season and voters were fed up. Given that Kilgore was a lackluster candidate and the negativity of the campaigns was so high and public, many many voters just got frustrated with all the pushiness.

    The poll coverage is important because it's the last chance frustrated voters have to see a friendly face that CARES about the candidates. And for the consistent voters, many really DON'T make up their minds until right at the end. I've heard this from them a million times. For all the whining about poll coverage, guess what: they de-emphasized it this year... and we lost. Not only lost, but lost even though it seems like enough Republicans came out to vote for us to win. Think about that: they already were coming out to vote. They just said to hell with Kilgore. And why not? They got slammed to death with Kilgore this and Kilgore that. No wonder they got sick of the guy: it only increased their already wavering feelings about him.

     
  • At 11/18/2005 10:39 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    72 Hour program concept works, turn out specific voters...your leans R's. The issue with Kilgore he was a poor canidate. I still have faith in the 72 Hour plan...just losing faith in the party.

     
  • At 11/18/2005 11:51 AM, Blogger GOPHokie said…

    4:14, I am referring to the ballots filled out by the party that tells you how to vote GOP (or dem)
    12:48, right on. Poll coverage is better than bugging people who dont want to vote anyway.
    10:39, I think the concept works; we just need to make sure we have poll coverage and dont bug people quite as much.

     
  • At 11/18/2005 5:31 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Hokie, I know what you mean. But I'm saying, come on, do you really need that much of a visual cue when the party id is right there on the official ballot?

     
  • At 11/19/2005 10:37 AM, Anonymous gopwahoo said…

    Perhaps in more rural areas of the state, the sample ballot volunteers still play some role. Smiling face, seeing your neighbor, friend from church, etc. who's asking you to vote for candidate x. But in the more urban areas and the fast-growing counties where people no longer know most of their neighbors, it is a waste of resources to have a volunteer handing out sample ballots. The VAST majority of voters don't want them and in order for the 72-hour program to be effective, there are more important roles for those volunteers. I realize it is a slow process to change the long-standing tradition from days when no party ID was on the ballot, but in order to be effective moving forward, we need to focus on shifting volunteers to activities that are more effective.

     
  • At 11/20/2005 1:08 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    We had a VERY strong 72 hr program this year: perhaps the strongest ever. It didn't seem to affect Republican turnout at all. Eevn a bad candidate doesn't explain that, and come on: Kilgore was not THAT bad of a candidate (only in hindsight is anyone saying that: it's easy to blame him as a target now that he lost) that it kept so many Republicans from responding to a gazillion phone calls. It was the gazillion phone calls in conjunction with a highly negative campaign that harmed things.

     
  • At 11/20/2005 1:13 PM, Blogger GOPHokie said…

    gopwahoo, I think you are certainly right. Sample ballots are much more useful is rural areas than suburban and urban areas. It may be to our benefit the run things differently for different parts of the state. We unfortunately think we need one homogenous plan for the whole state, and I think that is a bad idea.
    Anon, I agree the program was strong. The negative ads certainly hurt our turnout as well.

     
  • At 3/01/2006 8:13 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Sample ballots don't matter for the top of ballot candidates. They really matter for state leg and county candidates, that is why your local boys said that.

    72 is proven to up turnout of the voters you are targeting. You just have to be smart about who you target. Numbers don't lie. Its been proven that the more times you contact people the more they turnout. The law of diminishing returns applies of course, but it kicks in around 9 or 10 personal contacts.

     
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