Phone Banking 101 – Working for Crystal Williams and Theresa Garza Ruiz

Yesterday evening, I took a few hours and assisted two great candidates for County Legislature. It occurs to me that phone banking is an activity foreign to the overwhelming majority of citizens – or, perhaps more accurately, being on the calling end of one is. What’s it like?

Honestly, it’s a pleasant way to spend time, once you engage the gregarious side of your personality. You are given a rough script to work from, and a list of names, with address, age and gender. It’s tricky, sometimes, to guess at pronunciation of names. Generally, the older the person, the more likely they are to be home.

Probably the most surprising aspect of phone-banking is how non-political it seems. You’re not on the phone to argue with anyone; we were simply calling to identify people leaning our way so that we can focus our GOTV (Get Out the Vote) effort. (It’s just as well I wasn’t looking for an argument – not a single person I spoke with in 2 1/2 hours of calling said they would be voting for the opponents – not one!)

Most people listen politely to a few talking points and say whether they are leaning one way or the other, or are undecided. For the undecided folks, I discussed some of the candidates’ strengths, but you need to be careful about that, so as to avoid taxing their patience and to convey the genuine enthusiasm you feel for your candidates. People don’t want to hear you read canned talking points.

Despite the limited purpose of the calling, you’ll find yourself drawn into some great conversations. I had the true pleasure of chatting for a while with one of former Congressman Alan Wheat’s volunteers, and I had a fun time listening to a passionate advocate for dog parks – in Mission Hills.

There’s still time to get involved and help Crystal Williams and Theresa Garza Ruiz in their battle against Jackson County cronyism. There are still shifts available for phone-banking, and they could really use some help from people willing to get outside in the heat and go door-to-door. Call 816-365-6174 if you have a few hours to spare between now and Tuesday.

6 Responses to “Phone Banking 101 – Working for Crystal Williams and Theresa Garza Ruiz”

  1. Liar says:

    I am a volunteer for Rizzo we are calling in same area , and our numbers are very good . Why are you so caught up you are not honest.

  2. Clark says:

    I am curious to what the talking points are for crystal williams since she doesn’t appear to have any besides beating up Henry Rizzo. Negative advertising stinks and she should be a shamed of her campaign for concentrating so heavily on it.

    Good Day

  3. gonemild says:

    Liar – Well chosen name! I didn’t even mention the area I was calling into, so you kind of lose credibility in your accusation. And, like it or not, I wrote the God’s honest truth. It’s conceivable that people were being nice, but the fact is that not a single person expressed even a leaning toward Rizzo or the guy running against Garza Ruiz.

    Clark – funny that you go negative on Williams in such a creative fashion! There are tons of positive reasons to support Williams. Some of the ones that stand out for me are her support of the County Ethics Commission, her commitment to transparency in county government, her engagement in the community, her support of families, her work for nonprofits, and her knowledge of health funding.

    The fact she’s running against Henry Rizzo merely makes the contrast sharper.

  4. The Observer says:

    I was shocked by this information – not the idea of phone workers – but the idea that anyone would work for Rizzo.

  5. Hit Harder Crystal says:

    Clark I don’t agree at all. The people of Jackson County are both genuinely confused by and pissed off at the Jackson County Legislature. Pissed because they know it’s corrupt. Confused because they don’t know who to blame because they don’t know who most of the officials are.

    Voters don’t know who runs against who because they vote for 3 at -large races and 1 in district. If you are going to knock off an incumbent like Henry Rizzo or Denny Waits, which eliminating both would be cutting the head off the snake, then it is an obligation that you attack your opponent so that they know who you are running against and why you are running against them. You must paint a picture of their participation in the corruption or in Rizzo’s case his participation in the corruption and pushing an agenda that increases him family business of taking money on the side and pushing the growth of predatory lending.

    She actually needs to hit harder. Her mailers don’t tell voters who she is running against.

  6. Anonymous says:

    No endorsements?

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