My 17-year-old son and I spent three hours yesterday on the phones making calls to registered Republicans yesterday. My 15-year-old daughter, and 13-year-old son joined us to go door-to-door for another three hours, encouraging folks to get out and vote (if they had not already done so).
The campaign office was crowded with people. Every phone was in use, and some people were waiting for someone to leave so they could join in. We got a lot of answering machines during the phone calls. This gave us the opportunity to give them a message from Governor Sarah Palin. We had a few hangups and refusals, but for the most part those that answered were courteous and forthcoming. Those that we did hear from responded that they would (or did) vote straight-ticket Republican.
There were a few surprises, however. Some said they were undecided on the down-ticket races. One responded that they voted for Obama, Schaffer & Markey (D). My son had the most interesting response.
He started with our canned introduction, “Hello, my name is __, and I’m with the Colorado Republican Party.” At that point he was immediately cut off with the following response:
I don’t want to hear anything from the Republican Party. The Republican Party has screwed up our country enough!
Either a disgruntled former Republican voter, or the phone number is now owned by a frustrated Democrat. Some responded that they didn’t have time, weren’t interested, and some were tired of getting called. One even responded, “You just called me 20 minutes ago!”
After making the calls, I headed home to pick up the other kids to go out with packets of McCain-Palin, Schaffer & Musgrave information, and to survey the voters. We ended up with the apartment complexes filled with students attending Colorado State University.
At first, I was concerned that we would end up in Obama-supporter hell, even though we were going only to registered Republican homes. To my surprise and delight, we came upon a significant number of young Republican voters. Most of them had already voted. It was clear after a short time that many of the apartments were occupied by someone other than the registered voter. We did run into some Obama supporters, and they were all pleasant and we thanked them for their time.
It was a good experience for me and my kids, one I’m sure they’ll remember for a long time. We’re doing the same thing today; three hours on the phone, and three hours going door-to-door. If my kids aren’t totally wiped out, I plan to do a joint blog with them tonight.