This site is meant to facilitate the upward flow of information to help our elected officials stay in touch with those they represent. Also as a means to help us (the voters) help our leaders lead.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Campaigns Volunteers and Christmas

Campaigns are really starting to ramp up as most of the candidates have filed and the primaries are going to be crowded in our neck of the woods, in the “Five County” area. The “Five County” Parties are starting to do their thing too. In fact is my way to help the parties share their ideas on how each hopes to GOTV (get out the vote).

In Muskegon we had a busy day indeed. In the morning the regular Thursday Carmen Group was held and good talk was had as usual.

Then starting at noon for one hour shifts Republicans rang the Salvation Army Bell at Wal Mart on Henry St. Jim Riley set it all up, Susie made the Signs, and I was kept busy helping Jim keep track of the volunteers. The volunteers were the ones that really carried it off. As you can see from the photos the GOP presence as an asset to the community was felt. This election year we had plenty of volunteers. There will be another “GOP Bell Ringing” next Thurs. 12/10 see Calendar for details. Below are pics of the volunteers.

We as Republicans should be celebrating the cornucopia of choices and Candidates we have this election cycle. The Republicans in the “Five County” area are showing that they are the Party of new faces and good ideas.

In the mix; there are political veterans that bring a wealth of experience and there are new fresh faces who do not yet bring other assets. Depending upon your own way of thinking, experience or its lack is either a good or a bad thing. It really boils down to the person who is running. Their integrity and honesty, or let’s say the appearance of those traits in a candidate along with the message, is what will translate into picking up the 30% of the voters who call themselves independents.

I went to a Christmas parade in Ludington Friday night, I walked with Goeff Hansen – below is a picture of his crew. It was cold and windy and snowy. Thankfully the parade was fast furious and short. There was however a lot of people and children watching and getting candy and a lot of people in the parade.

Sat. I was in the Whitehall/Montague Christmas parade and most of the candidates were there. This one was at noon and a lot warmer, and longer. One thing to be said about the “newcomers” to politics is their excitement and enthusiasm for the contest they have entered. It shows up in their volunteers also. Below is a picture of Ken Punter and his lively crew, then Bill Cooper and his crew. The next is of Senator Wayne Kuipers whose crew also showed a marked enthusiasm. The last pic is of Goeff Hansen getting his crew together before the parade. We were all glad to see Tammy up and about after she had been sick for awhile. She is waving from the car.

Let me here add that in all the crews I saw a lot of young people. That, made me feel good.

The Republicans all seem to reflect a basic conservative message of lower taxes, less government; I really don’t see a Scozzafava in our midst. That is a good thing. It will be up to us as voters to meet and study the candidates so we can help the party choose in the primary the best candidate to win the general.

This 2010 election from bottom to top is crucial to the Republicans. We need to hold our term limited seats and pick up new ones such as the 91st which has Ken Punter and Holly Hughes in the Republican Primary. It is important for us to field candidates that reflect the people’s desire to cut back on the intrusiveness of government. Click Candidates for a list of Republicans in the "Five Counties" and state wide. The candidates need to find ways to resonate with that angst out there in the public about BIG Everything, Big Government, Big Labor and Big Business.

In an election cycle especially this election cycle I welcome crowded primaries. Let me explain. The general election this November will be about which candidate best offers the voters a way to help make government more accountable to the people. I believe it is about a basic struggle between those expecting government to fix everything to those with an idea that the government should help people to help themselves. ( David Cameron and the British Conservative Party call it Facilitation). That is done best by the government simply getting out of their way and not hindering them with over regulation, fees, high taxes and intrusive laws and rules. Candidates need to help get people to want to take back their own freedom.

I write this blog for the purpose of showing by example how easy it is to join in a campaign for a local candidate of your choosing. The candidate is happy with any help you want to give. I like to pick local candidates, ones that are close by because I have a better chance to get to know them. Simply put just by trying to figure out which candidate you prefer puts you on the right track to becoming an informed citizen. Come parade season next year all the candidates will be scrambling to get as many walkers in the parades as they can and volunteers to help with other things.

I personally like to help directly. Walking in a parade was the first time I volunteered to help a candidate. With my limited funds I also like to buy things to donate to a local campaign. For example I’m “old school” and love campaign buttons, so for around $20.00 I can have 10 made or more if I so chose and give them to a campaign if they don’t have them. I get these buttons made (sometimes while I wait) at Shirts N Stuff in Cloverville. Buttons I feel are more apt to be worn elsewhere than T-shirts. Be sure to Ask the Candidate first to get their right logo, permission etc. I feel more connected by doing this than if I was to give out $20 in cash. One time I gave them a candidates business card and Shirts N Stuff did the rest the other time I gave them a piece of literature with the candidates logo on it and they did the rest. No set up or art fee. If you order more they will give you discounts.

Another reason I like volunteering is the camaraderie that can happen. Fred Bertsch who lives in Whitehall had a “get warm” party for Ken Punter’s crew after the parade and we all went. See pics below. There was hot and cold cider, coffee and donuts and most of all good campaign talk. Plus the kids got to see the animals on the acreage. This is a great way to get to know a candidate.

Don’t get me wrong, sorry to say, cash is still king in campaigns. Candidates always are desperate for money, so don’t hesitate – donate lol. But – keep in mind that the money is there to help get voters behind your candidate. A volunteer by definition is already there.

For this and other ways to volunteer and to get involved in the political process which is what makes our democracy work, please click this link to my site -- “How Can I Help”
Regards, Live Dangerously Be A Conservative

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