Sunday, October 18, 2009

Time marches on...

We're down to 16 days before the election now.

This campaign has taken over my life.

Our side is out-stripping our opponents by nearly a 3-to-1 margin in the fundraising arena.

The polls still have us in a statistical dead heat.

No matter how right we are, no matter how just our cause, no matter how high-minded and ethical our methods, this thing is not going to be won on those merits.

Voter turnout will win this thing, plain and simple.

We're in an off-year election cycle. People just don't come to the polls in off-years like they do when there is a big race on the ballot, like President or Senate or Congress or Governor. The only things on the ballot this year are some citizen initiatives and a couple of bond issues.

Which means the only people who are going to vote are those who vote every year, no matter what or who is on the ballot, and those who have a dog in the fight, namely the activists on either side.

So truly, it comes down to which side can mobilize their people better on November 3.

I am nervous, but I have hope. In the campaign finance reports for the third quarter, our side had 12,000 donors ranging from large to small. Their side? Well, not so much.

I read through all 450-some pages of our donors when they were posted on line. An interesting thing I noticed was that our campaign staff is donating to the cause. From the executive director to the temp field organizers. They almost all give. The opponents? I didn't see that at all. Oh, I'm sure there are a couple doing just that, but not like I have been seeing on our side. Every two weeks on average, our staff will donate some portion of their earnings back into the campaign.

We believe in this. And it's personal.

I'm doing all I can here in my little end of the world. I am organizing house parties. I think I've raised somewhere in the neighborhood of $20,000, or I will by the time the election rolls around. That's not bad for a volunteer who's unemployed and trying to make ends meet.

We're transitioning now into get out the vote (GOTV) mode, so my pitches involve more about volunteering than giving money, and that's OK. It's what needs doing right now.

I'm going to be preaching a sermon (yes, you read that right) on November 1 at a nearby Unitarian-Universalist church. It being a UU church, I am going to trust that the structure will not cave in upon my head when I step up to the pulpit, but I have endured no small amount of teasing and hilarity at my new found speaking engagement.

This could all turn into something different for my life when this is over. It's still in the air. I'll write more about it as it develops, you can be sure. For now, I am just going to concentrate on getting through the pile of thank-you notes I have to do, and maybe watch some football this afternoon. Stay tuned.

Oh, and if you want to donate, HERE is where to do it. Thanks.

Oh, before I go, take a look at this commercial released this week. For those from away, this woman's accent is French-Canadian. Her family is probably one of the thousands who migrated to the mill towns that sprung up along Maine's rivers during the industrial revolution. She may still speak French at home -- many of our Franco friends do. They are proud of their culture and their heritage, and their church. And many have been very very torn by the Catholic Bishop's venomous involvement in this battle, and they are standing up and speaking out for justice. I do love Yolande Dumont. She is everything that is right about memeres in Maine.

1 comment:

MRMacrum said...

I have not even come close to your level of support. But I have blogged about it. I have brow beat friends and neighbors. Any who do not show up and vote will be on my shit list. They know that also. The icing on the cake for me was when my wife received this fax. It's one thing when my conservative church going neighbor says they are against it. It is another thing entirely when some stranger from away passes judgement. Hang in there. I am most definitely rooting for you.