Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Do election calls work?

It's 5 p.m. on Election Day and the phone rings -- a very nice woman named Patricia, who is supporting the school bonds and just wanted me to know I still had time to get out and vote. This marks the last of approximately 62,584 phone calls we got at our house this election season. I'm starting to hear Robin Hayes' voice in my sleep. Believe me, of all the voices I would like to hear in my sleep, Robin Hayes' does not make the list.

That was on top of the vote-for-me cards we got every day in the mail -- an identical pair for each candidate because my wife and I were on the mailing lists separately. If we'd stacked all the cards they would've been three feet high, or nearly half as high as the stack of cards begging us to get Time Warner digital phone service.

We'd listen to a couple of the calls on our answering machine early on, but there were so many toward the end that we deleted the message as soon as we heard a recorded voice. It's possible we won $10 million in a sweepstakes and deleted the call. We can live with that as long as we don't have to hear the mayor checking in with us again.

I do give props to City Council candidate David Romero, who at least called in person. We chatted for a good 20 seconds. I wanted to get off the phone before he offered to come cook us supper.

Here's my question: Does any of this stuff work? Did you learn anything about the candidates or the issues from the phone calls and mailers? Did any of this stuff make you vote a different way? Or do you wish there was a do-not-call list for politicians? Opine in the comments below.

(And by the way, if you're reading this before 7:30 p.m., Patricia's right -- there's still time to vote.)


Anonymous said...

Thankfully I did not receive 1 phone call or piece of literature in the mail. I wish I knew what I did to make that happen so that I could pass it along, and keep doing whatever it is that I'm doing.

As far as your question goes, no it doesn't work, at least with me. Unsolicited advertisements, let alone phone calls, generally work in the opposite way. I wish the do not call registry applied to political calls, as well as surveys, and I wish that they would extend it to "do not mail".

Anonymous said...

Man, I hate those election eve calls. I got 3 yesterday. After the slight delay between your first "hello" and their recorded blabber you get that dreaded sense of "I got up for this??? Quit Calling Me! I know how to vote!!!" I ALWAYS hang up right away no matter if I support the candidate or not.

Anonymous said...

Whoever calls does NOT get my vote.

Anonymous said...

My reaction is always "You've made the assumption that I haven't done MY job as a voter and researched the issues. Thanks for the insult, consider this an automatic NO vote for whatever your cause is."