From GOTV to GTFO: Mass candidate field in Orlando could frustrate voters at the door

“Over 30 candidates for two congressional districts alone.”

“Dozens more for state house and state senate.”

“And dozens more for municipal and school board races.”

“It’s conceivable that on a ‘Super Saturday’ an Orlando voter will get four or five campaigns at their door.”

“Yikes”

So went a conversation I had with a friend last night. The 2022 Orlando field of candidates for office is the biggest in recent memory. Redistricting and recruitment for higher office made sure of that. And with qualifying over, the dash for as many voter “touches” as possible has begun. And it’s going to be a very loud summer.

And if you’re a veteran in the field, you know one of the worst things that can happen is to have another campaign on your “packet” or route when knocking on doors. It’s generally a bad idea to hit a door that just got hit by another candidate just a few minutes before.

That voter has to get up a second time. Put the baby down. Try to look on their Ring to make sure you’re not a creep. And then have to listen to what another canvasser has to say.

With this many candidates, primary voters won’t find much rest in the coming weeks. And they might get frustrated. Frustration leads to two things.

An angry response at the door, which is unwarranted especially with younger volunteers who are just trying to help a candidate they believe in.

Or a “Do not disturb” sign at the door. Which doesn’t help anyone. An uneducated voting base puts people in office that shouldn’t be there. That leads to scandal.

And we’re not even getting into the assault on the senses they’re going to get on TV,radio and in the mail.

What matters here is patience and kindness on both ends.

If you’re knocking on the door, have your words together. Be pleasant. Be professional. Be goal oriented. Be gone.

If you’re answering the door, remember that person is just trying to make the community better. We were all there once. Give them your ear. Ask some questions. Engage.

And of course, vote. Because your voice is needed now more than ever.

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