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If the front doorknob hadn't broken, this might not annoy me quite so much. - Barnstorming on an Invisible Segway [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
Marissa Lingen

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If the front doorknob hadn't broken, this might not annoy me quite so much. [Nov. 2nd, 2010|11:46 am]
Marissa Lingen
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In the last two days, not one but two people have shown up at our door representing a particular candidate and asking how I intended to vote.

Not how markgritter intended to vote. Not how timprov intended to vote. They are both registered voters. I believe they are registered the same way as I am. But twice in less than 24 hours, people have come to ask about my vote. (Possible differences in how I look to oursiders: I am the officially designated Woman Of The House; I am the one who signs the checks to charities, including charities like Center for the Victims of Torture and Second Harvest Heartland that could in some sad twisted world be considered political.)

I answered this most recent gentleman's questions happily until he got to, "Do you intend to vote for [particular candidate]?", and then I gave him my best tight, frozen Minnesota girl you-have-offended-me smile and said, "We have private ballots in this country."

I know it's useful to them to try to get numbers. I don't care what's useful to them. I do not want to encourage them to keep showing up at my house and harassing me on election week. For various personal reasons I am not the person with whom you would like to mess just now, and I do not like people showing up multiple times to ask about my vote. I'm voting. I am, in fact, voting for your guy. As long as you don't send around a third and fourth querier to make me change my mind.

Also, get off my damn lawn.
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Comments:
[User Picture]From: dd_b
2010-11-02 05:01 pm (UTC)
I'm not sure it really is any use to them to know who you say you're going to vote for. If it is, it's because they're delving pretty deeply into practical (as opposed to theoretical) statistical techniques. It's certainly not going to make any difference in how they behave for the rest of this election cycle! I suspect they ask because they feel good getting a count, or maybe even because they find it influences people to have said they're going to do something.

Was he working from a list with just you on it, or was he asking about you because you were the one standing in front of him at that point?

And sorry about the doorknob! Not that it's news that the knob / latch / lock mechanism on that door isn't completely healthy.

I actually do care what's useful to them, to some extent; to the extent that I want them to succeed, at least. I might tell them straight off that I was on their side and they should go spend their time on somebody that needed convincing, to save their time (and a bit of mine; though I'd have already been interrupted by then).
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[User Picture]From: mrissa
2010-11-02 05:38 pm (UTC)
They asked Mark how I was going to vote when I was not there. Then they asked for me by name when I was there. So.
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[User Picture]From: mrissa
2010-11-02 05:54 pm (UTC)
Oh and also: the part that you have seen refuse to unlock and the part that is now broken (also in the direction of refusal to open, so at least we are not wide open to all the myriad burglary teams of Eagan) are completely mechanically separate items. So wheee.
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[User Picture]From: alecaustin
2010-11-02 06:17 pm (UTC)
That's awesome. (sigh)

I am having a good time imagining the myriad burglary teams of Eagan, though.
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[User Picture]From: miz_hatbox
2010-11-02 05:02 pm (UTC)
I do not want to encourage them to keep showing up at my house and harassing me on election week.

You are my hero right now.
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[User Picture]From: redbird
2010-11-02 05:14 pm (UTC)
We have only been getting robo-calls, which means I can't say tell them I'm not going to vote for any candidate whose people phone or turn up at the door and interrupt me.
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[User Picture]From: mrissa
2010-11-02 05:39 pm (UTC)
The robo-call I got this week was from the Volvo dealership from whom we did not buy our Volvo.

It was reminding us that Daylight Savings is this weekend.

I was so confused.
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[User Picture]From: dichroic
2010-11-02 07:07 pm (UTC)
Were they in Sweden? It actually was last weekend here in Europe, but I thought it was much later in the US.
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[User Picture]From: mrissa
2010-11-02 09:19 pm (UTC)
Um, no, they were in Mpls.
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[User Picture]From: redbird
2010-11-02 11:28 pm (UTC)
That sounds like space-filler public service announcements, which are fine when it's putting a "watch the gap" notice on the subway train, questionable when the subway system puts a recorded message on the PA starting "This is an important message from the New York City Police Department" (it's not, it's the same thing they've said a million times, because they seem to have acquired a DJ's fear of dead air), and completely unjustifiable when it's individual interruptions of your day to tell you ordinary facts.
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[User Picture]From: cissa
2010-11-06 02:17 am (UTC)
YES, THIS.

I sometime email candidates if they have robo-called me. LEGAL does not equal WELCOME, and they need to realize this.
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[User Picture]From: reveritas
2010-11-02 05:47 pm (UTC)
In theory, I don't mind telling someone how I'm going to vote. I'll do it right here: straight Democrat, down the line, yes on 19 and April Vargas for county supervisor. Now, what I don't like is people coming to my door and putting me on the spot, while I try to wrangle a dog who's about to yap my face off because OMFG SOMEONE IS AT THE DOOR JESUS CHRIST CRY HAVOC AND LET SLIP THE LONGDOGS OF WAR and I'm sorry, what were you asking? Who -- what -- no I don't have any money for your school fundraiser -- oh -- electionbzuh...o_O? I have terrible stage fright, and that includes talking to people who come to the door that I don't know or am not expecting.

As for the phone, I just don't answer it, ever, unless it's a number I recognize on ye olde caller ID.

And of course ... I'm going to use that line any time I feel the need. "We have private ballots in this country." That's beautiful.
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[User Picture]From: apis_mellifera
2010-11-02 07:08 pm (UTC)
My husband's been getting spam text messages from people who are for Christine "I'm Not A Witch" O'Donnell. We've both been getting piles of fliers in the mail, too. Both these things are Not Normal here, and it's so frustrating. Very much looking forward to next week--we have Returns Day on Thursday, so things won't drop out of the news here until then (there have been rumbles about some people not showing up to Returns Day, which would be quite shocking).
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[User Picture]From: hbevert
2010-11-02 07:13 pm (UTC)
My parents used to have "get off my damn lawn moments" with people who would come by and stick yard signs for candidates in their grass without asking first. The parents, being usually difficult-to-rile Midwestern Scandinavian and German types, would really fume about the rudeness.

Used to really flummox the folks stopping by to make campaign pitches in Canada when I'd say, "it's no use going on with your spiel here. No one in the household is a citizen, so we can't vote."

The thing that really surprised me in the election campaign here was that I was getting ads for a U.S. Senate candidate when I was online. Following IP addresses to give the right ad to the right part of the state?
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From: zwol
2010-11-02 08:19 pm (UTC)
For a while last year I was getting press releases from a fringe right-wing Australian political party.

To my *work* email address.

I have never been in the Southern Hemisphere.
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[User Picture]From: seabream
2010-11-02 11:22 pm (UTC)
"people who would come by and stick yard signs for candidates in their grass without asking first" That was allowed?! Weird.

Well, not able to vote doesn't mean not having friends who can vote whose choices you can influence, but still, yes.
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[User Picture]From: mrissa
2010-11-03 12:05 am (UTC)
Define "allowed." Technically, it's trespassing and vandalism, but stopping it is another matter completely.
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[User Picture]From: seabream
2010-11-03 04:33 am (UTC)
Well, i meant, 'allowed' in the sense of such signs counting as having been legitimately placed and therefore protected by bylaw from removal or defacement. There was a time here when campaign signs could be placed on the city owned stretch of lawn between the sidewalk and the road (if such was present), that for most other purposes was private-ish property (in the reverse of the convention in Muskoka, where the stretch of beach between your yard and the water is, though in title part of the land parcel your cottage is on, is for most purposes treated as public land that anyone is free to pass through and play on etc...) and that you could reasonably control. Because if it didn't count, then it seems a kind of silly thing to do since the owner, if they didn't want the sign, would just be able to remove it, making it a waste (or at least inefficient use) of volunteer resources. I suppose that if they were aiming for character assassination it might make sense, but then they'd have to duplicate the opposing candidate's signage, or steal it, or something.
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[User Picture]From: zelda888
2010-11-03 06:57 am (UTC)
Somewhere, Miss Manners is cheering.
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[User Picture]From: zalena
2010-11-02 10:52 pm (UTC)
Due to water main repairs, I have an enormous hole on my front patio, which means not even the trick-or-treaters dared bother me this year.
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[User Picture]From: seabream
2010-11-02 11:19 pm (UTC)
Hmm. In my riding, at least for some elections, one reasonable reason for a candidate's team to know who is voting for their candidate is to be able to know who to send people (if available) out to help them get to the voting station and vote if such help is required. Because of the new requirement that all voting stations be accessible, some stations have moved etc... and for some people needing the access, are further away and sometimes harder to get to. Also so that on election day, they can remind those people voting for them, either in person or by phone, to actually go and vote.

Nonetheless, I understand the aggravation.
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[User Picture]From: mrissa
2010-11-03 12:05 am (UTC)
It is generally frowned upon here to base one's get-out-the-vote offers upon explicit promises to vote for a specific candidate.
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[User Picture]From: seabream
2010-11-03 05:03 am (UTC)
Huh. Different traditions.

It doesn't have to be a promise or commitment. An expression of intent is sufficient. Given that the ballots are secret, it's also an intent which can change at any time before the ballot and not be anyone's business. It's pretty much like arranging for a car-pool. I mean, here it's also not generally considered intrinsically rude for a candidate or their representatives to go door to door and, as dd-b mentioned above, allocate time to try to convincingly promote their platform to undecided or opposed voters inclined to have a discussion, as determined by asking which category the person who answered the door is in. Granted, it's certainly possible to do so in a rude manner, but that's generally considered something to avoid given the often associated drop in receptivity.

Also, hopefully it's not presumptuous to wish for good resolutions to the various personal reasons you are not the person with whom one might wish to mess just now. Well, I guess more than normal, since even normally you're formidable and not a person to mess with, though normally that's more accounting for metaphorical yield strength than fuse timing.
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