Some of the most watched campaigns in Central Jersey this season are Assemblywoman Linda Greenstein's race for Senate, Congressman Rush Holt's re-election in CD12 and Hamilton Council race of Joe Santo.
This weekend, volunteers across CD12 and LD14 fanned out across the various communities to talk directly to voters about the importance of electing these three Dems on November 2nd. These aren't your paid canvassers of years past.
Following the Obama for America model, they are using volunteers within the communities to reach out directly to voters. As a 2004 Yale study revealed, these kind of personalized door-to-door contacts are the most successful and cost effective ways to get a campaign message across.
Greenstein volunteers prepare to canvass in LD14 at the Hamilton HQ on Route 33
At 10am Saturday morning, the Greenstein and Santo HQ’s campaign staff provided lists of voters, scripts of questions to ask, and maps of the streets to be canvassed. Volunteers included a mix of students (Rider, Rutgers, South Brunswick High School to name a few), teachers, state workers, Democratic committee people and a few first time political volunteers. Of course donuts and coffee were also provided to help fuel them on their way, and bottled water to keep them hydrated on the campaign trail.
Over at the Rush Holt HQ in West Windsor and all across CD12, volunteers for Rush and local candidates went door-to-door and onto the phones to talk directly to voters to gauge their choice on Election Day. These activities started Saturday morning and will go all weekend. This follows the Camp Holt sessions training volunteers and Democratic Committee people on the finer points of voter outreach.
All these activities are then tracked by campaign staff for follow-up and further persuasion as needed or to address specific issues brought up by voters at the door and on the phone.
Candidates and campaign staff will tell you that nothing you do this year is as important (except maybe making a donation!) as these grassroots efforts. Not only will it help them win, it will help to build a more people-powered Democratic Party that will only grow stronger with each successive election.
If you would like to find out more about each of these candidates or to volunteer for these campaigns you can go to their websites:
These canvassing sessions will be happening every weekend so sign up now! Can't walk? They will set you up with phone banking lists to call either at the HQ or from your home.
Rush Holt volunteers phone bank at the HQ in West Windsor