Anatomy of an (authentic) American political campaign

Follow the 96-day evolution of a grass roots political campaign as an All-American rural community fights back against the political manipulation of their town board's election.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Day Ninety Five

Finally. Election Day is here.

My husband and I were up and out by 5 am. With our neighbor, putting up our polling place signs. Then we all went to vote. At 6:10 am we were the 4th, 5th and 6th voters. Hopefully a good indication that people are going to get out and vote.

I headed over to the Town Hall polling place after voting where I took for the first 2-hour shift. My car wouldn’t start again, so I was forced to stand outside in the cold and dark waiting for people to come close enough to the 100 ft. polling place boundary that I cannot cross, in order to hand them a palm card that emphasizes Row G.

My line is really low on the ballot. I had trouble finding it and I knew where to look. Hopefully our polling place push of Row G for Good Government sticks with voters.

Around 8am, one of the election inspectors came out and challenged my right to be there, handing out materials. Fortunately, I had checked with the Board of Elections and double-checked with the Town Clerk that I could be onsite with my literature. Then this morning I took a 100-foot tape measure to each polling place and marked off the area where I could legally stand. The woman was clearly annoyed that I knew my rights and turned around and complained to the Chief of Police. He knew I was right and told her there was nothing he could do.

At 8am, I moved on to the School polling place and at 11 to the East Eden Fire Hall polling place. At both locations, the election commissioners again questioned my presence, and again I stood my ground.

I took a short break and went home for lunch and to get warm around 1pm. It was then that I discovered my first official campaign related hate e-mail. It came from a constituent in East Eden and it was really quite disturbing. I read it over several times and then crafted a reply. While I know it’s usually best not to engage such people, I just couldn’t finish out the day standing for hours on end at the polling places to try and win an election for the sake of voter’s rights, without speaking my piece.

We’ll see if the person has the nerve to respond. Either way, I don’t care. I know I’ve done a good job and I’m truly excited to see what happens tonight.

On a positive note, I spoke to Kevin Hardwick, a local political analyst and he congratulated me on my campaign. He said he would be following it and talking about it on the radio tonight in his post election coverage. I also received an official endorsement today from the Buffalo Pundit, a Buffalo Blogger.

Now we’ll see if the voters agree with them or with my new e-mail buddy…….
 
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