Local candidates need you

Ask anyone who has run a strong, viable campaign for local office and they will probably tell you that it was one of the hardest things they've ever done. Local candidates work harder for each vote than candidates on any other level. Their campaigns aren't typically well-funded, so getting voters out means good old fashioned grassroots-style campaigns.

In many municipal elections there is no top-of-the-ticket race operating a massive GOTV effort, especially for the primary election. While there can be some coordination among mayoral, district and at-large campaigns, most candidates are on their own.

Unfortunately, many local political parties (Rep and Dem alike) are too wrapped up in individual power squabbles to help much or they have such poor fund-raising and money management that there is no money available to help candidates get out the vote.(GOTV)

I don't mean to paint a dismal picture. A handful of organized, vocal, positive volunteers can do wonders for any campaign for political office - especially when they are coupled with an energetic, hard-working, qualified candidate. As many of you know, James has run and held public office. He knows just how much hard work it takes to succeed.

Running a local campaign was harder than I ever imagined it would be. I realize in retrospect that I wasn't cut out for it.

When I sift through all the lessons, I think it was mostly about yard signs. One guy in our community had a beautiful fern frond on his yard signs. Without saying anything much about anything in particular, he came in as the top vote getter every cycle.

The other lesson is this: It takes a village. You can't do it alone ... a literal army is required. Endorsements can matter, too ... and I rarely got them. Believe it or not, I was considered the conservative business guy when I ran for city council.

I have deep respect for those who choose to run for public office, even when I disagree with their positions. It's hard, hard work.

It is hard work and this is where you come in.

There are many energetic, hard-working qualified Democrats running for local office and they need, deserve and have earned your support. They've earned your financial contributions, they've earned your phone calls, they've earned your door knocks, they've earned your letters to the editor, they've earned your endorsements and they've earned your poll greeting on election day.

BlueNC has two three community members running for office. Mark Kleinshchmidt is running for Mayor in Chapel Hill, Jay Ovittore is running for City Council in Greensboro and Gordon Smith is running for City Council in Asheville. If you live in or around either of these cities please consider volunteering to help Mark and Gordon in their bid for office. Both are running positive,energetic, issue-oriented campaigns and in my opinion both deserve your time, vocal and financial support.

I know there are many other deserving candidates out there vying for volunteers. Please list the candidates in your area you wish to support and offer contact information so our readers in those areas can easily get in touch. Once listed in comments I will add to the body of the post to help get a little more visibility.

Candidates who need you

Gordon Smith - Asheville, City Council

Mark Kleinshchmidt - Chapel Hill, Mayor

Anthony Foxx - Charlotte, Mayor (I like the new web site. Old one was ugly.)
Jane Bott Childrey - Charlotte, City Council District 6
David Howard - Charlotte, City Council At-Large
Darrin Rankin - Charlotte, City Council At-Large

Jay Ovittore - Greensboro, City Council District 3


I will take this moment to thank

all the volunteers who helped with my mother's campaign for re-election. You are some of the hardest working people I know.

Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

Thanks, Betsy!

Thanks for the shout out, Betsy. I truly appreciate the support of my BlueNC community!

We've been running a field operation since March for this election, and there are still lots of volunteer opportunities to come.

9/22 - Phone Bank @ HQ 5:30-8pm
9/24 - Phone @ UNCA 6-7:30pm
9/26 - Neighborhood Canvass 10:30am-1:30pm


Next week there will be more...

We've contacted about 7,000 likely voters already, and we aim to touch another 5,000 before the October 6th primary.

If you can't volunteer, please consider sending some coin my way. Many of my opponents have very deep pockets.


Thanks again, BlueNC!

Scrutiny Hooligans - http://www.scrutinyhooligans.us

I have added three candidates from Charlotte

Anthony Foxx isn't new to politics and he will probably get some GOTV help from the state party, but he has a lot of grassroots efforts on the ground and they need volunteers.

The other three I've listed above are all first-time candidates.

I am not listing Susan Burgess or Patrick Cannon. They are seasoned candidates, received highest total votes in the primary and already have a long list of supporters.

Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

I Can Use Help

In Greensboro, I am the only Democrat running in District 3, for a Republican incumbent's seat. We will be canvassing every weekend from now until the election. My primary is Oct 6th and the general election is Nov 3rd. If you can volunteer to canvass please e-mail me at voteovittore@gmail.com and send me your contact info.

I also need donations to run this campaign. Printing is like gas, you need it run your car, but it's expensive as can be. You can donate at my website here. Even a $25 or $50 donation makes a huge difference and they all add up.

As a younger candidate who just watched a senior at WSSU win his election, I want to keep the momentum going. Local politics effects you more directly then any other level of government.

Thanks for posting this Betsy!

Jay Ovittore

“The will of the people is the only legitimate foundation of any government, and to protect its free expression should be our first object.” Thomas Jefferson

Jay...I am so sorry

Last time I left out Mark and this time I left you out. I realize that at my age I should remember all three of you. It was not intentional. I'll add you right now.

Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

No problem Betsy

Thanks for the add up top!

Jay Ovittore

“The will of the people is the only legitimate foundation of any government, and to protect its free expression should be our first object.” Thomas Jefferson

Mark Kleinshchmidt for Mayor

Thanks for the plugging the Mark Kleinshchmidt for Mayor Campaign, Betsy! And as Volunteer Coordinator for said campaign, I must say I’m very happy to see this topic & all the encouragement for getting people involved with municipal campaigns.

I'd also like to plug our facebook group:
Mark Kleinshchmidt for Mayor

I certainly invite and encourage anyone in Chapel Hill, Orange County, the triangle at large, or anywhere in the state if you're up for it to volunteer with the Mark Kleinshchmidt for Mayor Campaign. In particular because he is a "Voter Owned Candidate" - which means running a campaign off of low dollar donations of $5 to $20 only from registered voters in Chapel Hill plus a small additional boost of public funds for participating in the Voter Owned Elections program - this campaign is really going to rely heavily on volunteering. The principles behind public financing for campaigns are openness, honesty, accountability to voters not special interest groups, and taking money out of politics… but once the money is out, volunteering really has to step up to make campaign successful.

And right now is the perfect time to start since volunteering is just now about to get into full swing. We’ve had some envelope stuffing, a sign making party, and a sign distribution event recently, and have some more volunteering opportunities coming up shortly. Here’s a few pics of our signs going up around town:

Next up we're about to kick off our phone banking & canvassing efforts. If you're interested in volunteering let me know. Either send me an e-mail at jakegoad@gmail.com or you can always join the facebook group. Its event option has been a great tool for organizing both students & internet savvy adults (I assume all of BlueNC users count as internet savvy). The phone banking will be done on more of an individual basis, let me know if you're interested, & when we get going I'll make sure you get a call list & basic script.

What I'm really looking for next is people interested in canvassing with us, to just walk around neighborhoods & build support for the campaign. I'll be making a facebook event on the group relating to it sometime in the next week or two, and I'll be glad to e-mail anyone information about it who e-mails me to express interest.

If you want to track campaign events in general, check out this site: http://www.mark4mayor.com/calendar/
And if you want to volunteer, shoot me an e-mail, or join the facebook group. If you join the facebook group and pay attention to the group messages & event invitations you will be very well informed about all volunteering opportunities: http://www.new.facebook.com/group.php?gid=91222152476

Jake Gellar-Goad
Volunteer Coordinator
Mark Kleinschmidt for Mayor

that last sign would get you fined in Mecklenburg

We have a very strict ordinance here. All signs must be out of the public right of way, generally 11' from back of curb or edge of pavement. The first five signs in violation are $100 per sign, signs 6-10 are $500 per sign and anything over 10 are $1000 per sign. One of our at large candidates got nailed with a $2500 fine and more fines are on the way.

I'm sold on big signs

Less signs to track, easier to find legal places for them on private property, and people actually look at them. 50 large signs can cover your average city council district, 100 for state house, 150 for state senate. And you can take the high ground by saying you're not making your community uglier.

Also, instead of driving around blanketing the district with signs, volunteers can be on the phone or going door to door contacting voters. Signs don't vote.

I always wanted to be the avenging cowboy hero—that lone voice in the wilderness, fighting corruption and evil wherever I found it, and standing for freedom, truth and justice. - Bill Hicks

Little signs prone to vandalism

by the unscrupulous:

That's what remained of one of Jay's signs during Primary voting last year.

Mother invests in expensive signs

and uses them year to year. All of her signs were in private yards, property or businesses and were planted with permission of the owners. Her signs are corrugated and she uses the same colors year to year. I don't have a picture of them, but they are smallish rectangular signs, very sturdy and they are really visible because of the colors and her last name is the largest thing on the sign.

Sam's right - signs don't vote, but they sure do remind people there's an election going on.

Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

Jake - do not hesitate

to post every volunteer opportunity you have on BlueNC and then remind people in open threads.

Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

Can't say no to an offer like that!

Canvassing – Walking Dogwood Acres (Southern Village area)

This is our next volunteering opportunity. It starts at 12:30 & will last a couple of hours. Meet up first at Mark's place. All the details & directions are in the link.

If BlueNCers do really want to help with local campaigns, we're going to be having volunteering opportunities almost every weekend for the near future, so join this facebook group to watch for future events if you can't make this one. Group: http://www.new.facebook.com/group.php?gid=91222152476

Even if you can't stay the full 2 & a half hours or so, come put in 1 hour of canvassing, it'll still go a long ways. We've been targeting likely voters, who are going to vote whether they hear about this campaign or not, so we need as many volunteers as we can get to reach as many possible voters as we can!