Fresh Paint
Wednesday, November 08, 2006
Things Taste a Little Bit Better
... or maybe it's the bottle of champagne I just finished all by myself, while watching Brian Williams interview My New Crush, Nancy Pelosi.

I should have bought a second bottle. Was on the phone with a friend, bemoaning the Seals defeat and trading election stories (she was in North Chicago all day) with CNN on in the background, when she gasped. "Rumsfeld has been fired!"

"Thank God he didn't do it yesterday, or Sunday," I said. "Otherwise we wouldn't have 230(+-1) dems we can now kick around and make to do our bidding."

We all now wonder what would have happened if Rahm had 1) not interfered in the hearty grassroots support of Christine Cegalis, who had a network of worker bees and a solid progressive program, and came oh-so close 2 yrs ago), or 2) given Seals money early on.

Thoughts on how we can do this better:

1) Better voter ID. No wishful thinking. If someone says to you, a Democrat, that they don't want to tell you who they're voting for, it means they're a fucking Republican, you moron. Don't read things into it or think they're genuine swing voters. Training can help, I think. If they have an NRA sign in the window and a bunch of howling dogs in the yard and no holiday wreath on the door (or possibly a super neat house that has already taken down Halloween decorations), they're a fucking Republican, or a non-voting "they're all the same" type. If there are rotting pumpkins still on the steps and a Volvo or Prius in the driveway, you do the math.

2) Early physical, door-to-door canvas. 3 days before an election I shouldn't have had to report back on canvass sheets about vacant lots, Republican candidate signs littering the lawn of "target Democrat" voters, etc. DAY OF ELECTION I shouldn't have had these same IDs on my walk-sheets. Someone should have simply driven up and down the streets of every fucking precinct noting OBVIOUS SHIT. Ditto for day-of-election sheets that never recorded YOUR OWN PARTY'S signs in a yard. Yeah, maybe hubby is a Republican, and wife is a closet Democrat and doesn't dare put up a Dem sign, but I'd rather spend my time on someone else. She can get herself to the polls.

3) Less reliance on phone banking. People HATE to get junk phone calls. I still haven't unloaded the answering machine. This is how the "Hi, here's what Tammy Duckworth" -- click -- NEXT MESSAGE -- "false flag" messages work. You click thru 14 of them, and you're not going to vote for anyone.

4) I don't know why (for example) Melissa Bean's website reported on these fake calls and what to do about them (SHE WON), yet Tammy's website didn't (SHE LOST). I just learned today that in the last 2 days (when the Kirk people actually got nervous), Seals started getting the robo-calls too (HE LOST TOO). The local and national media should be WHIPPED about this.

Which brings me to

5) Something has to be done about the dirty tricks that happen so close to an election that even reporting them can be spun to the trick-maker's advantage. Excuse me, I was there. An irate canvassee actually HANDED ME the "Speedo" Roskam "Welcome to America" kit and begged me to take it back to "my people", it so deeply offended her.

OK, that's it.

One thing I've always liked about our old "Kerry Traveller" group (that was recently slammed as part of a political ploy in the Chicago Tribune -- will not provide the link, because it was so offensive) is how very much we've believed in person to person, neighbor to neighbor canvassing.

Why is it we can't learn from each campaign? Why is it we seem to have to reinvent the wheel every time?

I drink my champagne and cheer the victories of others, but here in Illinois, a supposedly bluer than blue state, we could have done better and smarter.

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