Thursday, October 30, 2008

last phone bank

My church held our last No on 8 phone banks Tuesday and Wednesday evening. We've been holding twice a week phone banks for the last four weeks.

Throughout the month we've been working from the same set of call sheets. Most of the time when you call a number there's no answer, an answering machine, or sometimes you get a wrong number. We note if it's a wrong number so we don't call again, but in the other cases we would just move on and call the next person, actually having conversations with about 1 out of 10 numbers we dial. If we do talk to someone we mark a code as to how they've told us they're going to vote and then we move on. And then week after week we keep using the same sheets, continuing to try and reach the people that we didn't reach in previous weeks.

Well by Tuesday night, our seventh time through the call lists we had pretty much reached every person we were going to reach. It seemed like the only names left on the sheets were people who were never home in the evenings, or never answered their phone in the evenings. In two hours I only spoke to two people and I was feeling pretty frustrated. Other folks had the same experience. We also noted that even those people we did talk to had already been overwhelmed with messages from TV ads and newspaper coverage and so on, so there wasn't much likelihood of catching an undecided voter we could persuade to vote No.

For the Wednesday night phone bank we decided not to frustrate ourselves further with unproductive phone calls. Instead we had a nice chat. We encouraged each other to come out this weekend for some visibility demonstrations, to donate (again). And we also promised each other to contact every person in our personal email and phone lists and make sure they will vote and know to vote NO. I feel like I've done all I could. I hope it's enough.

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