Saturday, July 19, 2008

Campaigning

I find that I have a tendency to write really long posts, if and when I actually post. This obviously takes a lot of time, and thus I tend to push blogging way down on the priority list. This is obviously not a good thing, as I feel I have a responsibility to keep certain folks updated. If you are not one of those folks, that’s okay, you can still read my posts.

In any event, I plan on updating more, but with shorter entries.

But to start it off, I’ll bring you up to speed.

First I’d like to say that my multi-month vacationing marathon around Eastern Europe and Australia has been interesting and enjoyable. The weather has been consistently nice, and the food is fantastic. The natives, however, are just as stuck up as ever against us Yanks. Regardless, that hasn’t stopped me from perfecting my surfing pro-skills and diving the Reef just about every day.

Oh wait; this is a blog post, not an addition to my summer wish list (which I've been meaning to start). Sorry.

Some folks still have no idea that I’m in still in WA, but in fact I’m working in Vancouver and will be until at least December.

I am the campaign manager of a senate re-election race, as well as the executive assistant to the CEO of a marketing firm. My day is split in two, focusing on the business in the mornings, and working on the campaign in the afternoon. Thankfully my boss is the same for both jobs, but it still can be confusing when trying to keep track of two very fast paced schedules.

Probably the most diverse of the two jobs would be campaigning. I run the Senator’s schedule, coordinate endorsement and fundraising meetings, take all the campaign phone calls that come in, recruit volunteers, and file the contributions that come in with the Public Disclosure Commission every week (they keep track of all funds received and spent in every race for public office in the state).

I work with a WSU grad, Jami, who is our communications director. She does our press releases, updates our website and Facebook page, and coordinates our events with our volunteers.

“Doorbelling” makes up a large part of campaign work. Studies have shown (don’t ask me when or where) that physically handing information to someone and giving them a quick pitch, as opposed to strictly sending them mail pieces, cements the name of the candidate in their mind and acts a follow up to your other name recognition efforts (road signs, parades, etc.). All this is done with the hope that the ever forgetful voter will recall his sentient of good feeling or trust towards the candidate that he has perhaps gained when it comes time to check the box near his name.

I have plenty of stories of what happens on some peoples doorsteps, but for starters let me just say that the average voter, yes we’re talking register voters here, is horrendously under-informed (A.K.A Ignorant).

Most of the folk I talk to know only who they are voting for in the Presidential race. Other than that they don’t seem to care, at all. This apathy drives me out of my mind because they have no idea how much more state politics affects their everyday lives as opposed to national politics. :end of rant:

Another thing I've learned is that a lot of voters like to vote for the winner. It seems that if the voter percives a candidate as being likely to win, they will join what is called the "bandwagon" effect.

Well, thats all for now. Check back for more frequent (albeit random) updates from the life of a campaign manager. If you dare.

4 comments:

Stephen Bittner said...

It's amazing - the average American is at most apathetic when it comes to any kind of politics, national or otherwise. Just look at the Obama campaign; he has gotten where he is pretty much by keeping his campaign to the simple line, "Hope. Change. Obama '08." Very few people are willing to go further than their TV sets to fund out about this guy's background and voting record, what he really stands for, etc., hence the growing power of our warped media.

Esther said...

An addition to a non-existant list? Wow. That's kind of uhm...interesting.

And, yes shorter entries seem to be much more feasible for important people. =D

Jkplayschess said...

Interesting thoughts, Daniel. I agree that most of us are far too complacent about elections, especially local elections. Are you going to smack me now? J/K! This is an area I definitely hope to improve in. Maybe if I had more people around me actually involved in these sorts of things... well that's a discussion for another day. Give me a call when you have time- if you still have time for me these days. :P

Brian said...

You have no time to post, yet when you do you use it to post about a non-existant wish list? Alrighty. Just jokin. Good post, good post. For a second there, I thought you were making a joke about all the minorities in Vancouver (Russians, etc.) which would have been funny. You should tweak the post and make it so.