Magazine article Campaigns & Elections

Ask the Campaign Doc

Magazine article Campaigns & Elections

Ask the Campaign Doc

Article excerpt

Hey, Candidates, No Need to Ride in Style

Q: Am I justified in suggesting that the candidate not drive his Porsche to campaign appearances?

A: Yes, and you might be better off saying "Hell,no way,''ratherthan just suggesting. As Bloomberg News noted earlier this year, "vehicular stagecraft" is all the rage ascandidates "deploy high-mileage autos meant to confer Main Street authenticity." The idea is that "Fords, Chevrolets and Jeeps are rolling protection against charges ofelitism .''Just beware that economic elitism can rear its unpopular head in other ways-not knowing the cost of a loafof bread or the major employers in a jurisdiction. And don't complain about property taxes that exceed a voter's annual income orthatyouradultchildrenarenotgetting paid enough when your audience includes many people who are unemployed.

Q: I am not interested in working for a specific candidate, but I do like the idea of being a poll worker. How do I go about doing that?

A: In2007,the U.S. Election Assistance Commission published a compendium of state poll-worker standards including, but not limited to, voter registration status, age, residency requirements, and party registration. Despite the lapse of seven years and some changes in state laws, it remains a good place to start. After reviewing the eligibility rules by accessing the commission's website, contact your local election office-chances are they will gladly add you to the poll worker team.

Q: Can big data be useful for fundraising in small races like school board, city council or legislative?

A: The answer is yes, but divided into three parts: the target, the ask, and the amount. Accordingto Democratic consultant Matt Lackey of Civis Analytics, "Who you ask for money matters a tonobviously primary voting Republicans won't donate toa Democratic candidate. You can use good segmentation or microtargetingonwhateverlistyou're organizing voter contact around to focus your donations on your likely supporters. …

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