I'm biased. I'm volunteering canvassing for Obama for America in New Hampshire. The fact is our ground game is superior to the Republicans. In fact, they have very little ground game whatsoever in the Granite State. I heard there are just eight Romney/Ryan field offices in the entire state. I think there are 30-40 OFA field offices in New Hampshire, and at least five I know of just in Rockingham County (Salem, Derry, Exeter, Portsmouth, and Hampton).
May I boldly say we have been fucking relentless (pardon my French). This one guy said it was the fourth time someone had come to his house. We are just reeling in our stragglers and fence-sitters. Romney is still trolling for voters.
If you predicted the election results by campaign signs on people's lawns, Romney is winning. Then again, that was the case in 2004 by an even wider margin and John Kerry not only carried Rockingham County but he carried the state.
Follow me below for details about how sophisticated the OFA ground game is:
When I go out canvassing, I get a folder w/ several maps, turn by turn directions to the starting point and a very detailed list of the voters we are trying to reach. There are two columns (designed for repeated contacts, in case the person is not home or other possibilities). There are boxes to mark if the home was: inaccessible (like a private driveway), the person refused, moved, and so on. The other column ranked the voter's enthusiasm from strong Obama, lean Obama, lean GOP, strong GOP, other candidate.
But this little detail is why I thought why OFA is so far ahead of the game. Next to each name is a barcode. This allows OFA staffers to quickly adjust their target audience. And I am not the only only person who noticed this:
Obama party workers say that months of canvassing have left them with finely-crafted lists of likely supporters. An Obama volunteer in Fairfax, Bob Polkinghorn, marvels that the voters on his call lists have already been contacted by the campaign at least once, and sometimes three times. In 2008 Republicans were “clobbered” technologically by Team Obama, concedes a Republican Party boss. This time Republicans are ahead, he says, thanks to clever data-mining and those internet-linked telephones that allow firm supporters to be separated from those who still need revving up. The Virginia party boasts of “Moms for Mitt” phone banks and “Warrior Wednesdays” when ex-servicemen call each other. Both sides claim target-voter lists of equal “efficiency”: the Romney camp reports that 63% of those they contact are supporters, avoiding wasted time and resources. The Obama camp reports 65% efficiency in voter contacts—a measure on which Democrats enjoyed a hefty lead in 2008.I have been working out a beautiful 18th century classic New England farmhouse. It is the staging house for the campaign. The host, David Ahearn (and his wife Elaine) is a long time party activist and candidate for treasurer of Rockingham County. Two OFA staffers, Alex and Evan have been staying there. Elaine was baking cookies for tonight. Volunteers and friends have brought food and water. The other day, I was warmed up from canvassing on a cold and blustery day with a bowl of black bean soup. Another day, someone brought sandwiches, and they were tasty and not some schwaggy gas station sandwich. My point is all the food makes you feel at home. When you are a college student (not myself, but many of the volunteers this past weekend)and you know you can grab a snack or a meal without having to spend money you may not have is as Vice President Biden once said, "A big fucking deal."
I have yet to see a single Republican doing visibility or canvassing in the Seacoast area of southern Rockingham: Hampton, Hampton Falls, North Hampton, Rye, Seabrook, or South Hampton. My friend did say she saw one guy standing near the Old Salt in Hampton (at US. Route 1 and NH 27) but the guy looked kind of sketchy and he was holding a hand-written sign below his campaign placard.
When I have encountered an actual human I close the deal more than 90 percent of the time. I had two outright refusals in three days of canvassing. The first guy was downright rude to me. Then again, I would rather that then passive aggressive bullshit like saying "I'm all set" which was something I heard a lot in Seabrook in 2008. I don't know what that means. It could mean my vote is private. It could mean stop bothering period. It could mean I'm voting for Obama. Or in 2008 for McCain. This guy told me to go away. I marked that as a refused.
The lady who refused me seemed flustered because I was the fifth person that contacted them. I explained that if she expressed a preference we would stop contacting her. She told me shad chosen a candidate but declined to identify them. I could care less if she said Romney. It makes my job easier if she said that.
This evening. I will be holding campaign signs either in Seabrook or Hampton Falls. Hamton Falls is where that racist bastard John Sununu lives. I would love to tell him to fuck himself, but the odds are he will have voted before I get there this afternoon.
Let's finish the job.