Home / General / Some scattered thoughts after an afternoon of canvassing

Some scattered thoughts after an afternoon of canvassing


This is really exhausting for an introvert like me, but it kind of helped with the low level constant anxiety/fear/stress I’ve been feeling for weeks now. I’m sure I’ll be back to my dyspeptic self tomorrow, but for now it helps.

Talked to many dozens of people, mostly but not all from a list of registered Democrats (who haven’t early-voted as of yesterday). Zero Trump supporters (indeed zero non-Clinton supporters) but then I doubt many Trump supporters would be willing to drive through West Dayton, let alone live there.

Mostly talked to older African-Americans. When I launched into the boilerplate about how this is likely to be a very close, very important election, etc etc etc, they’d often give me a raised-eyebrow look that said, very clearly, “do you really think I don’t understand what’s at stake with this election?” and we’d quickly move on to logistics–polling locations, early voting hours, etc.

White people, on the other hand, are exhausting. Only talked to handful, but they all wanted to talk about at least one of their “issues” (EMAILZ make me sad, wasn’t Bernie dreamy?, IjustdontlikeherforsomereasonIcantputmyfingeron, random 90’s references, etc) before committing to doing the sane, responsible, necessary thing. As exhausting as this was, working a white neighborhood would be probably be much more so.

The GOTV machine I was a cog in seems to be functioning at such a level that it seems unlikely very few votes getable votes on the table in West Dayton. It’s impressively efficient, well-staffed with volunteers, and well-organized.

Early voting is a BFD. In talking to busy people with complicated lives, it makes it a lot easier to make a plan to vote they can commit to. I knew this, intellectually, but it was really driven home today. Absolutely worth fighting to defend and expand.

Only a few people want to take advantage of the captive audience to talk politics, but one woman, just getting home from a double shift as I arrived to her house, was pure gold. I’m going to reconstruct my favorite part of her rant as faithfully as possible, but I’m not doing is justice–it was just a marvelous, angry, hilarious rant. The gist of it:

Look, I get it, you white people* had a hard time with Obama being president so you need a racist president. I get it. I don’t like it but I get it. But what I don’t get is why you needed a racist who is so goddamn crazy and stupid! Couldn’t you find a racist who could actually know how to run the damn government? I mean, I wouldn’t vote for him–he’d still be bad for people like me–but at least he’d know what he’s doing? What good does it do the damn white people when Trump shits the bed? It’s not like there’s some other special country they move to when he takes this country down. We get a black president and he does a pretty good job, and your response is murder-suicide? You white people need to get smarter about how you do this racism thing.

*she interjected caveats about how her use of “you white people” should not be construed to include people such as myself and Obama/Clinton supporters generally, so this didn’t come off as hostile or accusatory as the words on the page might make it appear.

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  • howard

    that woman is a stone cold genius: thank you for celebrating her.

    • jim, some guy in iowa

      agreed. that rant was *excellent*

      • lizzie

        Indeed. Thanks for sharing. I’ve mostly been feeling ok, in a thick bubble of denial that the worst could happen, but the last day or two I’ve been getting really anxious. That rant cheered me up.

    • djw

      It was all delivered from that slightly crazed exhausted-yet-weirdly-energized state you only find yourself in after working for way, way too long (I think she’s a nurse) that was just a perfect pairing for the content.

      • ThrottleJockey

        I’ve been doing some canvassing too. It sounds like you’ve been *mostly* following the *longish* script you’ve been given, no? How well does that work out for you? I’ve been coming across a lot of people who seem in a hurry.

        • djw

          It didn’t seem too overlong, but I shortened it up by the end o the afternoon.

    • GeorgeBurnsWasRight

      Almost never is the question asked: “Is our racists learning?”

      ’cause it’s difficult to ask questions when you’re laughing so hard.

    • BobBobNewhartNewhartSpecial

      that women is a stone cold genius

      Seems apropos of the straight Jewish male self-hating sub thread we had going under another post.

    • ploeg

      I have had the same feelings myself. Whatever you can say about Hillary Clinton, you just have to ask yourself, “And then they go and nominate Donald J. Trump?” and any reluctance that you have to vote for Clinton subsides instantly.

      • vic rattlehead

        Whatever I can say about Hillary? I think she will be 2016 NFLTG Obama from day one and I can’t wait.

        • science_goy

          Seriously. I know it’s stylish to say something about “holding your nose and voting for her,” but I felt absolutely thrilled to cast my ballot a few days ago.

          • scott_theotherone

            I cannot fucking wait to vote for her, my wife is even more excited and my daughters are nearly as the Barry Allen able to pass through solid walls stage they’re so goddamn excited.

            • Dilan Esper

              She’s going to be a terrible President on foreign policy. She has repeatedly proven herself to be an utterly bloodthirsty and incompetent hawk.

              On domestic policy she will get nothing done but do less harm.

              • Taylor

                If I have any reservations about voting for Hillary because of her hawkish FP, this kind of over-the-top CDS theres-not-a-dimes-worth-of-difference-between-them rant dispels those reservations completely.

                Thank you.

    • Are you sure that woman wasn’t Dave Chappelle in drag?

      He does live around there.

      (Yellow Springs actually. Ran into him there a few times.)

      • farin
      • djw

        I shared a table with him at Dino’s Cappuccino’s the last time I was in YS.

    • rhino

      Yep. She needs a talk show.

  • Fats Durston

    If the election doesn’t go pear-shaped, it will have been worth it just to have read that rant.

    • skate

      I’m a middle-aged white male and I’ve had a semi shitty day. Reading that rant made me feel better.

  • randy khan

    It’s hard to disagree with her. That said, with competent racists you get South Africa.

    • Mike G

      Couldn’t you find a racist who could actually know how to run the damn government?

      With Republicans it’s a point of pride to not know, and not care, how to run the government. That would be admitting that government has a function other than being a fat target for their cronies to loot.

    • wengler

      Or Israel.

    • Bootsie

      Or the American South until like the 80s.

      • MidwestVillager

        Reading about the failure of King’s Chicago campaign I get the sense that the Southern racists were actually less competent than the Northern ones in terms of being subtle enough to preserve the status quo (eg when the Federal government admitted that Chicago Public Schools had been drawing attendance boundaries based on race, Daley was able to get LBJ to select the CPS board as the entity responsible for investigating itself and accordingly ensured that there would be no real change for another two decades.)

    • Gareth

      On the other hand, the South African racists knew when to quit.

      • Thom

        Basically, the South African racists (the apartheid government, I assume you mean) gave up when, as Jon Dee Graham says in “Laredo,” the money ran out.

  • Marci Kiser

    This is a really sad indicator of America’s industrial decline. Back in my grandfather’s day, America was producing some of the finest racists in all the world.

    • Hercules Mulligan

      We don’t make racists anymore…all our racists are imported from China. Sad!

  • ironic irony

    That “murder-suicide” line is everything. Thank you for sharing!

  • Karen24

    I used the Hillary 2016 magic phone banking tool today to make 40 phone calls, 20 to North Carolina and 20 to Arizona. I spoke to exactly one voter, in Spanish, from AZ. I have to say that it made me happy, or at least as happy as I am capable of being about this nightmare of an election, that we are still expending the effort to phone bank in Arizona.

    • BartletForGallifrey

      There are often options to do Spanish phone banks. If you speak Spanish, I *strongly* encourage that.

      • Karen24

        Hablo español, pero con un acento tan espantoso.

        • Most people in the world in my experience appreciate the effort that goes into an attempt, however inadequate, to speak their native language. There are exceptions, especially among anglophones and the French. The difference in poll findings among US Latinos from polls conducted in English or Spanish suggests that making the effort is very important to this group. If you are Slovene, Finnish or Welsh, you know that no outsider apart from professional linguists is going to learn your language, but it’s different in larger language communities.

          • Karen24

            That’s been my experience as well. I speak a little German and when I’ve used it to an actual German, they’ve all been delighted. I’m trying to learn French and Italian as well. I doubt I’ll ever be really fluent in all of them, but I want to be able to read newspapers and magazines. I can read Spanish really well, but get frustrated trying speak it.

            I think I’ll do phone banking in Spanish for the Dems in two years. By then I should be more comfortable and be able to do some good.

            • Thom

              Yeah, that (Spanish phone banking in two years) is a good goal for me as well.

          • I’ve never really found that to be the case with the French.

            French Canadians to an extent. Mostly because they’re so bilingual they’d just as soon you not waste their time trying to speak French unless you’re fluent in it.

            • rhino

              My experience is they appreciate the effort, but as you say they inevitably speak way better english than most people (canadians included) speak french.
              They appreciate that you tried, but they sure as hell aren’t going put up with your wretched abilities, and just start speaking english to you.

      • calling all toasters

        I speak very, very fluent Spanish. Todo ‘sta bien, chévere.

        • Karen24

          Muchísimas gracias!

        • Ahuitzotl

          I dont worry ’bout a thing

    • cpinva

      does that phone banking tool have a built-in translator function, or do you speak Spanish?

      and chill. by Tues. evening, the election will have been called for HRC (having taken every state/territory reported by 8pm, the west coast will be merely the cherry on top), comey will be packing his desk under guard, and senate republican leadership will be committing ritual seppuku.

      • BlueLoom

        from your keyboard to god’s ear

      • BigHank53

        republican leadership will be committing ritual seppuku

        Can we save some to throw to the lions? It’s traditional, after all, and we know how much they love traditions.

        On second thought, we don’t need the ASPCA on our case for abusing the lions by feeding them garbage.

        • (((Hogan)))

          The lions would know better than to eat that rancid crap. They’d just maul the hell out of it and leave it for the hyenas.

          • Snarki, child of Loki

            “Throw them to the RINOS”

            It’s what they deserve: getting GORED, that is.

      • Coconinoite

        Oh please oh please oh please oh please

  • los

    interjected caveats about how her use of “you white people” should not be construed to include people such as myself and

    Some of them are good people, I assume. Some of them aren’t rapists, gropers, xenophobes, racists, unregulated ‘militias’, … deplorables”

  • Peterr

    “Pure gold” does not do this woman’s rant justice. Thanks for sharing it, three days before the election.

    And may inspire you and others here who canvas and do GOTV work to keep on keeping on. Just think: the next door you knock on may be this woman’s sister . . .

  • bobbo1

    I also liked people rolling their eyes as if they needed you to tell them how important the election is. Sometimes I wonder if this is clear to people, but your experience is reassuring.

    So anyone up for a prediction about what time they call this damn thing? All times in EST please

    • Matt McIrvin

      It could be quite late, just because it’s clearly not going to be a blowout and some of the big swing states have most of their Democratic vote in cities that report late. The transit strike might mess everything up in PA if it goes on.

      • brendalu

        Speaking of which, Uber and Lyft are doing free rides to/from the polls in Philly (sponsored by a Dem PAC) to help counteract that. Worth spreading the word if anyone’s got connections there.

        • Matt McIrvin

          I think the major problem is going to be messed-up work commutes making people miss the polls entirely, not getting there from home.

          …But this is still going to be a lifesaver for some, so it sounds great.

      • (((Hogan)))

        I’m betting that if they haven’t settled by Monday, SEPTA will get an injunction for election day. The judge at the hearing wasn’t buying the “most people live close to their polling place” argument.

        • rhino

          I am unfamiliar with the issues, but smart negotiators on both sides would find a way to call a truce for the election. It’s just good optics.

    • BobBobNewhartNewhartSpecial

      So anyone up for a prediction about what time they call this damn thing? All times in EST please

      It depends on how long you think it will take to resolve 4-4 split in the Supreme Court.

      • rhino

        The presidential race? I’m comfortable calling it now…

        Trump hasn’t got a chance in hell.

        The Senate and the house? My prediction is the senate by a bunch, and barely carry the house for dems. I think the republicans are looking at a historic collapse because their voters are going to stay home. I think we forget that there are limits to party loyalty, and that even the deluded cannot actually hold their noses and vote for trump.

        Ironically, while I recognize the stakes as huge, I am more optimistic about this election than any I can remember.

    • ploeg

      It’ll probably be done by 11 EST. Trump has so many need-to-win states out east that it will be over with as soon as they can confirm that Trump has lost any of those states.

      Edit: The main thing will be whether the Ds take the Senate; otherwise Clinton won’t be able to get much of anything done. And that might take some time to figure out.

      • vic rattlehead

        What time was Florida called in 2012? If/when Florida is called for Hillary, we can be pretty confident Trump is drawing dead. Unless there are some very weird results elsewhere that make us less confident in the polls.

        It will probably end up being too close to call early. But once the blue firewall states are called for Clinton (knocks on wood) Florida will hopefully just be icing.

        And given all the Puerto Ricans voting in Florida, maybe we can narrowly unseat Rubio by like a Franken 08 margin. Puerto ricans don’t like Cubans! At least the older generation of my in laws… :(

        There may be split ticketing but the Puerto Ricans sure as shit ain’t gonna have a problem voting for the gringo (Murphy).

        • Craigo

          Florida wasn’t projected for close to a week, though the final margin was almost exactly it was at midnight on 11/6.

        • ploeg

          In 2012, Obama won Florida by 74,000 votes, and it took four days before the automatic-recount-proof result was verified. Not sure that it’s going to be that close this time.

          • Matt McIrvin

            I don’t know how to read the tea leaves on early voting (people always get excited about that), but unless there’s a major polling miss, it won’t be that close. Florida was polling tied in the endgame in 2012; nobody could really call it at all. Clinton has had a small lead there, averaging somewhere around 2 points, in all the polls I’ve seen since Halloween.

        • (((Hogan)))

          Part of the Florida panhandle is in the central time zone. In 2000 the networks caught major shit for calling Florida before all the polling places had closed (based on exit polls, no less).

      • Warren Terra

        In any case, the networks are strongly discouraged from calling the election before 11 PM Eastern, as that’s when the polls close in the western states (the western contiguous states; no-one worries about HI or AK), and there’s a concern a premature announcement may discourage people from getting to the polls.

      • Matt McIrvin

        Sam Wang’s “Trump +2” map suggests a not-ridiculous nailbiter scenario in which Trump manages to win or unresolvably tie Florida, NC, NH, and ME-2, and we have to wait to see if Ralston Reports is correct about Nevada being a lock for Hillary.

    • Todd

      North Carolina polls close at 7:30pm. If Clinton is able to win by more than a point or so, competent and honest election analysts will admit that Trump is drawing dead for the rest of the night.

  • wjts

    What good does it do the damn white people when Trump shits the bed? It’s not like there’s some other special country they move to when he takes this country down.

    Nobody tell her about Svenborgia. And especially nobody tell her about Grenyarnia.

    • BobBobNewhartNewhartSpecial

      It’s not like there’s some other special country they move to when he takes this country down.

      Nobody tell her about Svenborgia. And especially nobody tell her about Grenyarnia.

      Already there. And living out my white Jewish male privilege like the boss that I was born to be.

  • jpgray

    Thanks for your efforts. Black lady is more on point than a lot of the white liberal punditry/blogosphere/commenters I read.

    Reason being… it seems people go one of two ways in interpreting support for a disgusting loon like Trump. To oversimplify:

    1. “Ooh, they’re economically stressed and responding to his arguments(!) on trade/economics – we need to listen to their concerns and win them over!”

    2. “They’re a bunch of irredeemable weird old racist nativists and/or hypocritical fundie nutjobs – we need to write those assholes off until they die!”

    I work with a lot of Trump supporters in the 30-50 range, and both of those are… just fucking stupid, yet they also both have a half-grip on part of the truth.

    They’re normal people, most of them. This is going to end up being upwards of 47% of the voting public. You know and like some of them. But let’s be clear, these normal people are acting like psychotic self-harming assholes, and for a reason.

    To some extent a vast portion of the white male population feels like they should be able to either (1) start blue collar work at 18, get a job, buy a house and raise a family four years later in stability via hard work, or (2) go to college, get ??? degree, work hard for a bit and then get promoted and be upper class – fancy and secure forevermore.

    This is no longer possible for the vast majority of them, and so their brains are exploding as they feel this was promised to them.

    There’s some idea out there that explaining that this dream is gone forever in lurid detail and then promising some pale facsimile of 1 or 2 is a path to regaining their hearts, but it simply isn’t. Their (very sensitive and entitled) brains are exploding and we’re peddling Alger’s Dream Debased?

    Irredeemably racist? I doubt for most of them this is true, but they sure as hell will act like it as long as they have sensitive, entitled, exploding brains.

    And that’s because what their exploding brains want is to feel dominant over, and in control of, someone, anyone else – ideally some person or group they can blame for their being made to feel like failures, however unreasonably.

    We’re simply not doing that. So is it any wonder they respond to someone like Trump? This is him all over – if you’ve failed, you’re weak unless someone else is to blame, and you assert your dominance over that person/group and make them pay. Not being weak is more important than figuring out how to fix the failure or avoid it in the future.

    If we’re to address the self-destructive mentality that supports Trump or Brexit, pointing out their actions are insane economic self-harm isn’t going to do it. Deep down, they know that already. “Listening” to their bigotry or xenophobia undoes the work of generations.

    You want infrastructure investment? For this demographic, you’re better off going the Ike route and tying it to national security. Crumbly bridges and a vulnerable grid are a problem of national defense, and we’re going to make our country safe. Sure it’s a bit silly, but channel the desire for pride and dominance into something useful. If you bring them in by “listening” to their xenophobia, you’re not only just chasing their ghosts, but you’re marginalizing minorities who’ve more than fucking earned their place of power in our coalition.

    • Matt McIrvin

      It’s even not entirely silly, especially the grid part.

      Trump even mentions crumbling infrastructure in his speeches, though he has no sensible plan to do anything about it.

      • jpgray

        Right! And holy god sorry for the massive wall of text.

        • Chetsky

          Please don’t be. Wonderfully put. As someone who grew up in a small Southern town, -this-.

        • ExpatChad


    • BobBobNewhartNewhartSpecial

      pointing out their actions are insane economic self-harm

      Assuming that this part is referring to the anti-trade or anti-immigration parts of Trump’s so-called platform, you are dead ass wrong. That is the only thing he gets right, and even Erik agrees. I know everyone likes to hate on the Bernie Bros, but Bernie was right on this one: http://www.vox.com/2015/7/29/9048401/bernie-sanders-open-borders

      • DocAmazing

        More like opposition to unions and lust for deregulation, which is boilerplate Republican.

      • jpgray

        It was referring more to the tax plan, and various privatization schemes, which are more likely to actually become policy than Mexi-Wall or Trump-branded NAFTA confetti.

    • For some reason, Nazis were very thin on the ground in Germany in June 1945. Defeat has to come before reeducation. The trouble is, the defeat has to be total and the reconstruction pitiless. Germany 1918 and the Confederacy in 1866 show that defeat may not be enough.

      • bobbo1

        Well Germany 1918 was defeat plus humiliation, and it was the humiliation that arguably caused the rise of the fascists

        • cpinva

          “Well Germany 1918 was defeat plus humiliation, and it was the humiliation that arguably caused the rise of the fascists”

          hardly, they didn’t even have to surrender, they just agreed to stop shooting at people. Pershing called this one right at the time. the only “humiliation” was self-generated, because they basically got their asses whipped, but suffered no post-war occupation by the allied forces. their humiliation/shame was entirely a self-constructed thing, which Hitler then used to great effect.

          • Marek

            their humiliation/shame was entirely a self-constructed thing

            um, no.

            which Hitler then used to great effect.


          • Woodrowfan

            Actually Allied troops, including American soldiers, occupied the Rhineland until 1930. American troops were among them until leaving in 1923. It included black US troops as well as Colonial French troops, which lead to a number of mixed-race kids. (Who were classified as non citizens under Nazi racial guidelines)

            You are right though, the German rightwing used the treaty as a scapegoat and refused to admit they had actually lost the war.

        • guthrie

          Not the humiliation, things were going better until their rather unbalanced economic policy combined with the 1929 global crash to immiserate a large % of the population. And even then the Nazi’s never actually wong the vote outright, they were handed power by the oligarchs who thought they could control them.

    • Gareth

      start blue collar work at 18, get a job, buy a house and raise a family four years later in stability via hard work,

      I think this was Theo Huxtable’s life plan on The Cosby Show before Cliff talked him out of it.

    • PJ

      You want infrastructure investment? For this demographic, you’re better off going the Ike route and tying it to national security. Crumbly bridges and a vulnerable grid are a problem of national defense, and we’re going to make our country safe. Sure it’s a bit silly, but channel the desire for pride and dominance into something useful.

      Dems already do too much of this playing to the national security fear, and they get pilloried for it by progressives and leftists.

  • (((Hogan)))

    You white people need to get smarter about how you do this racism thing.

    Got THAT right. We could fuck up a beach party.

  • vic rattlehead

    I had a similar experience in Philly when I talked to people of color. The reaction was basically “Um yes Mr. Pasty White Guy we understand that we need to stop Trump.” Not in a rude way just a sort of “of course dude you don’t need to nag us about this.” Which was cool. Except fewer older white people. I even talked to one guy who just became a citizen and was excited to vote! That was really cool and made me really happy!

    One older white guy, husband of a nice woman we were assigned to talk to at the listed address, said he was probably not on our list because he was an “independent” but said “put me down for Hillary too.” So that was nice.

    Lots of students in the area too so some bogus addresses which was disheartening. No one brought up emails, but then it wasn’t really aimed at persuasion, it was more GOTV focused aimed at confirming that they supported democrats and making sure likely voters knew how/where/when to vote. But then I’m sure it would’ve been a pain in the ass to canvass after Comey’s little October surprise.

    But yeah, it was Philly, so that’s Democratic canvassing on easy mode. Can’t imagine doing it in some other places.

  • MilitantlyAardvark

    What good does it do the damn white people when Trump shits the bed?

    Peter Thiel can finally have himself a bloodbank/autocracy in his very own all-white, all-male rowing-boat.

    Other than that, we’re pretty much reduced to checking fortune cookies for silver linings.

  • twbb

    I am scheduled to canvass tomorrow, which I am dreading. Not sure how effective it will be to do it after early voting ends, but I’ll try and do my part.

    On a side note the Clinton campaign is irritatingly the hell out of me. I’ve gotten 4 emails today begging for $45. I’m not quite sure exactly what use they are going to get out of donations 2 days before the election, because I presume the deadline to buy airtime has passed, and they’d better not be trying to dig their campaign out of debt, because that is not our problem right now.

    • vic rattlehead

      If you’re worried about coming across hostile people, in my experience it’s rare for GOTV as opposed to persuasion. And no matter what, most people find it much harder to be assholes to people face to face. People can be curt or surly of course (no one loves being hassled at their home-as a homebody introvert I used to find it invasive and uncomfortable although I was never rude to canvassers) and sometimes visibly impatient but it usually doesn’t get more overtly rude or combative than that. But maybe I’ve just been lucky.

      • twbb

        Nah, I just am an introvert too and don’t like cold calling, particularly in person. By virtue of being a large and intimidating man I am usually insulated from overt hostility.

        • farin

          When I said that very thing to the staffers, they pointed out that it’s not cold calling; you’re actually following very well vetted leads. It’s much less cold sales call than retail customer service, because you know most of these people want your product; you just have to help them work out the details.

          • twbb

            I did the actual phone banks too, and believe me, the recipients considered it cold calling.

      • Craigo

        FWIW, in 2008 I canvassed regular Democratic voters in western PA quite often, and those days were some of the most horrible experiences of my life. It was a total 180 from 2004, when working class whites in coal country had no problem voting for effete elitist John Kerry.

        • I don’t know quite what western PA was like in 08 but I do quite well know what it is like in 2016 and if there are as many similarities as I think there probably are, well, I feel your pain.

    • djw

      Curiously, she’s on my case for 35. Does she have evidence you have around 30% more disposable income (or are 30% more generous) than I?

      • Ahuitzotl

        coded to zipcode maybe? my ones are only $25, but I live in the bad part of town (I’m told)

    • Hopefully that extra $45 isn’t needed. But if this goes into overtime we’ll want money in the bank for lawyers.

  • Buffalo Rude

    [long time lurker, very infrequent commenter here]

    I canvassed today in Cleveland Heights (first ring suburb of Cleveland) and can confirm same (minus the righteous rant). Almost every white person I talked with, almost every fucking one, was like “I’m voting/voted Hillary, but…” [facepalm]

    However, every black voter – yes, every single one – that I talked with seemed to agree that this election really mattered and were pulling the lever for the Dems. So much so, I soon dropped the “OMG THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT!!!” part of the spiel as soon as I knew I wasn’t going to be talking to a fellow cracker.

    (Just some anecdata, but it made me feel better about Tuesday. Let’s do this, people!)

    • Incontinentia Buttocks

      The votes of people who are “voting for Clinton, but…” count just as much as any other votes for Clinton. Just sayin’…

      • Buffalo Rude

        This is very true, thankfully.

    • Jordan

      Awesome, thank you for doing that.

    • Brenda Johnson

      Thanks for doing that, fellow Cleveland-area resident.

      • Buffalo Rude

        No thanks needed, but appreciated. I don’t live in Ohio, tho. I have some family there that let me crash on the couch, thankfully.

  • Solar System Wolf

    I canvassed today also. Northern Colorado, white neighborhood. My list was of registered Democrats and unaffiliated but Democratic-leaning voters who have not yet returned their ballots. Most of the people on the list were Millennials.

    • rhino

      And? what was the response?

  • priceyeah

    I did some canvassing last weekend and this weekend in a Levittown-y suburb of Cleveland called Lyndhurst. Depressing place. Middle-class, mixed-race, I would even border on saying ‘affluent’ but everything’s kind of run-down and bleak. The most common response for any house was ‘not home’ — aside from that, hardly anyone seemed to want to talk about much of anything. My brief was not to do a ‘pitch’ at all but merely to ascertain level of HRC support and then exhort/explain early voting options and so forth. I was working off of lists of pro-HRC voters, so of course most people were solid supporters. But even within that set there were pockets of resistance. The main takeaway I got is that most people who don’t follow politics are sick to death of the election and aren’t enamored of the candidates. Every single black voter I talked to is solidly behind Hillary and intends to vote.

  • wengler

    It’s pretty simple how you get Trump:

    1) Have widening income gaps facilitated by transnational corporations and their ability to write trade rules

    2) Unchecked nationalism

    3) A deep abiding fear of the future

    4) Massive mistrust of elites and their agenda

    5) A permanent nostalgia for the ‘way things used to be’

    How Trump has used each point:

    1) Firm opposition to TPP and NAFTA

    2) Scapegoating of Mexicans, muslims

    3) Repeated calls that the country has gone to hell

    4) A war against most press outlets, also Republican Party leadership

    5) The hat says it all

    • But, but, commenters on the other thread have told me that ECONOMICS HAVE NOTHING TO DO WITH IT RACISM ONLY! Are you saying there might be multiple problems here>?!?!

      • ploeg

        Our basic problem here is that you have to marry solutions to problems. If your solution is that we have to build a wall on the Mexican border and have Mexico pay for it, then sorry.

        Speaking more broadly, western Iowa has its problems, but as long as you elect Steve King to Congress, the palette that we can use to fix those problems is somewhat limited.

        • BigHank53

          Perhaps you have greater experience in this area than I do, but I haven’t found that finger-painting the walls with your own poop solves any problem.

      • cpinva

        “But, but, commenters on the other thread have told me that ECONOMICS HAVE NOTHING TO DO WITH IT RACISM ONLY! Are you saying there might be multiple problems here>?!?!”

        ok, going to go slow here:

        1. racism: no country for old white men.
        2. mysogyni: why can’t I tell every women what to do with her body?
        3. homophobia: just………….icky!
        4. xenophobia: what do you mean that there are people on this planet that aren’t old white men? oooooooooh keep them away!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

        once again, it took a democrat to clean up the republican mess. employment is up, poverty slightly down, more people have health insurance than ever before. most Trump supporters would seem to be employed, though maybe not in the top 1% they believe they’re entitled to. so yeah, racism and generalized stupidity. not much to be empathetic about there.

      • Anxiously awaiting your next blog post about how this race wouldn’t be so close if we’d just nominated Bernie. You can source that to the last six months of wengler’s comments.

        • PJ

          All of which are apparently based on forgetting that Nixon and Reagan existed.

      • ExpatChad

        you wanna see how a trump presidency would have been?

        Visit the beautiful and friendly Republic of the Philippines.

        • ExpatChad

          In 2000, at about the time of John Ashcroft’s prayer vigils, I determined to retire outside of the Republican Hate nation. Being 50% Canadian, I Planned on BC.

          Came to the Philippines instead, where for 7 years I was very content.

          See how quickly HELL can arrive.

      • Harkov311

        Ok. This is as condensed as I can make my case.

        Most actual Trump supporters aren’t economically hurting. They’re middle-class by any reasonable standard. Not college-educated, but then I’m going by the assumption that you’re not using the Thomas Frank definition of “working class” meaning literally anyone without a degree who isn’t making over $100,000 a year.

        Find any one of these middle-class Trump supporter and I’ll bet that this person was also a Romney supporter four years ago. A free-trade loving venture capitalist and a protectionist white nationalist don’t have much in common, yet somehow most supporters of the first became supporters of the second. I’m pretty sure it’s not for economic reasons.

        Even if it were, Trump’s only heresy from conservatism is on trade. On wages, unions, benefits, and on down the line, he’s offering the same old conservative boilerplate. This also leads me to believe that those supporting him are probably not people who get hot and bothered about trade treaties.

        Basically, the white people who like Trump are the same white people who liked Romney. And McCain. And Bush. That’s been their team for a while now. Trump didn’t bring them along.

      • mds

        You know, Professor Loomis, if you contacted djw, he might be able to arrange a meeting with the woman in the post, who sounds pretty goddamned working-class to me. Then you can explain to her how important it is to talk with white working-class voters about how so many of them are supporting Trump for economic reasons. And then maybe we can put the whole thing up on YouTube for its humor value.

        I mean, perhaps she just doesn’t understand the evils of capitalism or something, but somehow her electoral remedy doesn’t involve a racist, sexist orange-tinted bag of shit whose actual economic plans are (1) more enormous tax cuts for rich people, and (2) that’s it.

        So I guess what really chafes my chassis is the presumption that only from talking to white working-class Trump supporters can we out-of-touch liberals really learn the genuine economic concerns faced by ordinary Americans. What about all the working-class people who aren’t supporting the flagrantly evil asshole? Are they honorary out-of-touch elitist liberals, too?

        (And no, of course it’s not all racism. My parents are supporting Trump because Franklin Graham has said it’s the only way to save American Christianity from destruction. Meanwhile, they’re paying less for their meds right now thanks to the donut-hole fix. But that was done by pro-abortionist atheists who hate America, and besides, lazy Negroes and illegal aliens are sapping our nation’s bodily fluids. So Trump it is. Mysteriously, though, non-bullshit economics never enters into it.)

        • rhino

          If you want to understand why people are supporting a fascist, you talk to the fascist’s supporters.

          I see no indication whatsoever that anyone is claiming that the concerns of the deplorable are the only concerns that matter. In fact, I’ve seen a great deal about how the concerns of the deplorables do NOT matter much at all compared to the concerns of other groups.

          Loomis did nothing to earn this.

    • BobBobNewhartNewhartSpecial

      1) Firm opposition to TPP and NAFTA

      A good thing.

      2) Scapegoating of Mexicans, muslims

      A bad thing.

      3) Repeated calls that the country has gone to hell

      An undeniably true thing, although explanations about how and why the country has gone to hell will of course differ.

      4) A war against most press outlets, also Republican Party leadership

      Something we on this board are actively pursuing.

      5) The hat says it all.

      The hat says something else we on this board are actively pursuing.

      Are you a stealth Trump supporter or something? Because four of the above five sound pretty good.

    • FlipYrWhig

      I don’t even think he has “firm opposition” to trade deals. He just says he could make better ones.

      • djw

        Yeah, the particulars of his rhetoric about free trade tie in very clearly, it seems to me, to those other parts of Trump’s appeal. When he talks about renegotiating NAFTA, putting China in its place, etc, he’s promising we’ll bully and dominate those foreigners who’ve been getting uppity. There are obviously non-racist, non-xenophobic reasons to oppose free trade, but Trump’s campaign has married anti-free trade rhetoric and racism/xenophobia in his rhetoric and, importantly, in the minds of many of his supporters, which is going to make it harder for future politicians to disentangle them.

  • Denverite

    The good news is that on the walk with the dog today, the count was 7 Clinton yard signs and 0 Trump (though I did see 2 anti-right-to-die initiative signs, so I’m counting those as like 0.6 Trump signs). The bad news is that my neighborhood is the one designated “Wealthy Democrats” on Judgmental Maps, so it may not be representative.

    • FWIW my mostly Catholic family has a number of die-hard, life-long Democratic voters who are strongly opposed to right-to-die laws. This includes the substantial chunk who are pro-choice. So I’d be hesitant to count those as semi-Trump signs.

      • rhino

        Whenever I encounter people who oppose right-to-die laws, I cannot help but wish a very slow and painful degenerative disease on them.

        Fucking assholes.

  • Went to early voting on Saturday afternoon, and had to wait an hour to cast a vote. It really shouldn’t be that hard; I’ve seen reports of it being much, much worse in other places.

  • I’ve seen a lot of Trump signs on my bike rides here in Central Ohio.

    I’d say mostly on wealthy looking properties outside city limits. Big houses on multi-acre lots.

    I see a few Clinton signs out there too, but not as many.

    • Steve LaBonne

      Those fuckheads are fine with burning down the world as long as they get a tax cut out of it.

      • I’m an upper-middle-class white male. I would arguably stand to gain personally from a Republican administration.

        I just don’t think I would enjoy my tax cut very much in the crumbling, post-apocalyptic, hellscape they would turn the country into.

        • Steve LaBonne

          The fuckheads seem to think their McMansion developments will somehow be safe havens.

          • The fuckheads seem to think their McMansion developments will somehow be safe havens.

            In the style of communities of wealthy Mexicans (at least when I lived there; I don’t imagine things have significantly changed, except for the expansion of “wealthy” to include many more drug lords—which presumably does affect the point I haven’t gotten to yet), they will simply buy their own private militias. And perhaps they will even offer their upper-middle-class white male neighbor ComradeMajor Kong first dibs on organizing their own private Air Force (there’ll surely have to be a fire sale at Wright AFB, with great bargains for the well connected)! I’m sure he’d like that, though perhaps they might not, after all was said and done.

  • Gator90

    Well, off to vote. HRC winning FL would more than make up for yesterday’s fiasco in Fayetteville…

  • Steve LaBonne

    For quite some time now I’ve been in favor of making white people pass good old Mississippi-style literacy tests before we’re allowed to vote.

    • so-in-so

      Just asking them who won the Civil War would weed out the worst!

  • Steve LaBonne

    I look forward to finally being able to do this stuff in a few years when I retire (I’m a civil service employee and not allowed to do partisan work). I know how important it is and my hat is off to all those who are doing it.

  • Cosigned.

  • Kathleen

    I canvassed in Cincinnati today in a neighborhood within half a mile of mine. I live in the city – about 5 minutes from downtown – and our neighborhood is diverse ethnically and economically. The African Americans I’ve spoken with have had the same reaction described by other folks commenting – yeah, we got it. We know it’s important. And they’re all enthusiastic for Hillary (except for maybe 2 I spoke with). I’ve also spoken to white people (mostly older, a couple younger) and they are also enthusiastic about voting for Hillary. I’ve heard great stories about how or why people are enthusiastic over and above the fear of Trump. People are really getting it, and actual conversations are in stark contrasts to pundit babble and “news” reports. For the first time I feel confident that the decent people Obama always talks about will show up and save the day.

    I also think Hillary will take Ohio.

    • Steve LaBonne

      I think so too. The campaign’s actions suggest that their internal polls are looking decent.

  • Woodrowfan

    I hesitate to think what my hometown just south of Dayton (Go Pirates!) will do. My guess is 75% Trump. Blue-color, used to work for GM and NCR till the plants closed/moved. Visited the old Moraine GM plant last year. There were -ing trees growing in the parking lot. Depressing as hell.

    • djw

      A Chinese glass manufacturer is taking over large parts of that facility, ramping up production and jobs pretty fast.

      • Woodrowfan

        cool! thanks, I did not know that. I worked there when it was Frigidaire. 4th generation of my family to do so.

    • BiloSagdiyev


      That’s Flint, MI. Best I can tell, all the whitish area on that satellite view are concrete where factories used to be.

  • Jake the antisoshul soshulist

    Remember in the ’80s-90s when Japanese started moving/buying manufacuring in the US. We are seeing the same thing with Chinese

    The murder-suicide line is priceless.

  • Dennis Orphen

    They might shit the bed on the murder-suicide thing, AKA ‘Don’t Laugh, You’re Next‘.

  • PJ

    Juat want to point out that not all Black voters love HRC. A lot of them are still pretty annoyed-to-pissed about how she ran against BHO. BUT.

  • ASV

    White people, on the other hand, are exhausting. Only talked to handful, but they all wanted to talk about at least one of their “issues” (EMAILZ make me sad, wasn’t Bernie dreamy?, IjustdontlikeherforsomereasonIcantputmyfingeron, random 90’s references, etc) before committing to doing the sane, responsible, necessary thing.

    I wonder if this is something white Democrats only pull when they’re around other white people. This kind of bullshit has made me more frustrated with my fellow Euro descendants than even the overt racism of Trumpers, because I was already fully aware of how much racism was out there. But the facility with which white people will say, “Yeah, Trump is terrible, but…” and then whine about how they have to vote for Hillary just sets me on edge. My wife has a couple of (white) hardcore Bernie friends, and every time she talks to them she comes back with a rant about what whiny idiots they are — they’re going to vote for Hillary (in Illinois, so like, not a huge deal), but they desperately need people to acknowledge and thank them for the damage they’re doing to their souls in the process.

  • I canvassed in an overwhelmingly white neighborhood in central Ohio yesterday. I was surprised by the enthusiasm as they all (except one “undecided” man) confirmed that they are voting for Clinton. Everyone knew their polling location and a startling number of them knew the open and closing times. At least three different women saw me walking up their driveways and preemptively said “don’t worry, we’re with her,” before I started in on my spiel. One teenage boy answered the door, saw my “H” sticker, and said “there’s no pussygrabbers in this house.” He told me he just turned 18, this was his first election, and he was excited to get out and vote.

    I also have to second djw’s complements of the Dem GOTV org: “impressively efficient, well-staffed with volunteers, and well-organized,” is pretty much my sentiments exactly.

    • blackbox

      “there’s no pussygrabbers in this house”

      This oughtta be a lawn sign too.

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