Monday, October 6, 2008

tales from the obama campaign front lines: male PUMAs? they do exist!

Last week, I volunteered again for the Obama campaign. Latinos for Obama volunteer night is on Tuesdays and because of my work schedule, I had not been able to participate before. But I was free last Tuesday, so I walked into the Arlington office hoping to put my Spanish language skills to good use.

I worked the phone bank again. As I was getting my assignment, I saw NotFunny from my first volunteer experience and we greeted each other like old friends. Between my first volunteer experience and my latest, I noticed that much had changed. First off, there were a lot more people available to canvass. Secondly, there were tons more volunteers! The phone bank had tripled in size and every phone was manned by a volunteer. This was definitely an encouraging development. And the diversity of the volunteers was inspiring. It was so wonderful to see people from all different backgrounds and ages and skills coming together to help elect Obama and turn VA blue!

My job that night was to call likely voters (most of them were Spanish-only speakers) and determine who they were leaning towards voting for. Of all the calls I made, only 3 people were voting for McCain and those who had already decided to vote for Obama felt very strongly about doing so (I spoke to lots of Undecideds). I sat and listened to a few women going on and on about how McCain is just like Bush and how upset they are about Palin and how she's significantly set back the feminist movement. I could completely relate to how they were feeling and encouraged them to put their anger to good use by volunteering or donating to the campaign.

Of the three McCain supporters, only one of them was nice to me (one of them hung up on me after telling me she was voting for McCain and the other one said in Spanish, "I could never vote for a Black man.") He was a Democrat, originally from Arizona, and a former Hillary supporter. He explained how he had been a lifelong Dem and was pulling for Hillary during the primaries and was disappointed when she ended her campaign. The PUMA said, "You know, Obama hasn't really convinced me to vote for him, so I'm going to vote for McCain." In the background while he was explaining his position, I could hear someone chanting, "McCain sucks!" I wasn't sure what was going on.

The PUMA explained, "You might want to talk to my wife though. She's voting for Obama." She wasn't on my phone list, but I asked the PUMA to put her on the phone. PUMA's wife got on the phone and, before I could say anything, began to go on a rant about how McCain is just like Bush and Palin is a complete joke. I patiently listened to her rant (as I've been known to go off on plenty of my own) and didn't say a word until she asked me, "Why are you calling here again?" I told her I was an Obama campaign volunteer and I was just doing some surveys. At this, PUMA's wife got really excited. "I'm so happy you're doing this!" she said. "We've got to make sure Virginia goes to Obama." I assured her that there were many like-minded individuals who were fighting the good fight and I encouraged her to join in either by volunteering or donating. She responded, "You know what? I'm going to donate right now!  And maybe I can still convince my husband."

I can't tell you enough how rewarding it is to volunteer for the campaign. I've met many passionate individuals who feel the same way I do that change is really what America needs right now and the REAL candidate for change is Obama.

As we're going into the home stretch (4 weeks left until election day!), things are going to get ugly. The McSame/Vagina campaign has already announced that they intend to attack Obama's character over the next 4 weeks (Palin already did so by linking Obama to terrorists this past weekend, using the politics of fear tactics perfected by Karl Rove and his chronies) in order to distract voters from the real issues. I honestly hope that Americans can see through the ruse.

Still, nothing is going to stop me from volunteering for the campaign again. In fact, I just might face my fears head on and actually canvass the neighborhoods this weekend. Wish me luck!

3 comments:

Zipcode said...

hehehehe anyone voting for Spaghetti Cat yet? I will laugh if you get a caller that says that.

Notice Jesses friend looked at me like I was crazed lmao

instatick said...

You should canvass - it's SO much fun! That said, the husband and I had it easy as we canvassed a predominately black, Obama-supporting neighborhood.

Zipcode said...

A few things about canvassing you should know about - apartment complexes have no trespassing, no loitering, even though you are just canvassing - you can get kicked off the properties.

Be careful please! Call me if you get in a jam with anyone - zipcode to the rescue