Kate and I just got back from spending a couple of hours calling registered Democratic voters in Florida; in St. Lucie County, Florida, to be a little more specific. We went down to an office building in West Berkeley were a Kerry-Edwards phone bank had been set up, bringing our own cellphones and chargers. We each got a list of about 50 voters, their precincts, and their phone numbers, along with a script to use. The script was basically, “We need every Democratic voter in Florida to turn out.”
A couple things I didn’t anticipate:
–How positive and engaged people seem to be. I had about eight or ten people tell me they had voted already; all but a couple of the half of the people on the list who answered their phones were interested, were upbeat about voting, and most said they were glad to get the call. I had one person say she was too ill to get out and vote, one who said it just wasn’t a good time to talk, and one person who said she’d gotten repeat calls and was a little tired of it.
–How positive and upbeat I felt: You know, after months and months of taking in the campaign through the media, or getting involved only to the extent of making donations, you get to feel that it’s all an elaborate charade. Going someplace here in Berkeley and calling a bunch of people all the way across the country seemed kind of lame. But talking to people who were actually going to the polls, who were pumped up about voting, who were enthusiastic about the candidate’s chances — hey, it made me feel like calling, or doing a little something to at least try to make a little bit of a difference.
I’ll find someplace to go and volunteer tomorrow, too, I think.