Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Election Day! Live updates from HD90

Fairness Fund Organizer Andrea Jansa will be sending live updates from house district 90 throughout the day. Please stay tuned for the latest information.

12 p.m. update
Matt and I were sent out this morning to Batavia, Iowa, in Jefferson County, about 10 miles west of Fairfield. We had door hangers and a list of 41 doors to knock on.

We stopped by the Batavia Community Center to introduce ourselves to our poll watcher before we headed out to the neighborhood.

As we were finishing up, we stopped back at the polls where 41 votes had come in so far today. For a town of fewer than 500 people, that's not too bad for the first 5 hours of election day. Especially when so many absentee ballots are already in the bank!

2:30 p.m. update

Update from Brad Clark, Fairness Fund Treasurer
I'm in Fairfield today to help get out the vote for our endorsed candidate, Curt Hanson. I've been knocking doors with Fairness Fund organizer Craig at the Maharishi School, encouraging folks to get out and vote.

After a quick lunch, I thought I'd send a short update before getting back at it this afternoon. We have another round of doorknocking before meditation begins at the school at 5:00 pm.

From what I'm hearing, there has been a steady stream of voters throughout the day. Speaker of the House Pat Murphy called this morning to thank the Fairness Fund and all those who've contributed to our efforts in HD90. The morale on the ground is good and we're hoping for a victory celebration this evening!

4:30 p.m. update from Andrea
Matt and I have been canvassing Utopia Park near the Maharishi University of Management for the past few hours. Utopia Park is basically some student housing and labeled by the entrance sign as "The Homes By the Domes."

What a friendly neighborhood! Everyone is so nice...even after we've accidentally knocked on their door twice after their absentee ballot has already been picked up. This neighborhood is generally very supportive of Curt, so every chance we get to make sure they've made it to the polls is well worth it in our book.

Having technology right at our finger-tips out in the field has been a largely valuable tool. After receiving word from our office in Des Moines about a potential supporter who contacted them, we were able to get that information right over to the Democratic Headquarters in Fairfield. Every vote counts!

7:00 PM Update

We just spoke with Andrea and Brad who are on the ground in HD90. Both are in the middle of an intense last minute push to get voters to the polls before they close at 9:00. Turnout appears to be high by special election standards and our organizers are making sure every last supporter gets to the polls. All indicators point to a tight race. Fingers crossed that Hanson can pull out a victory!

Monday, August 31, 2009

Live updates from HD90

Fairness Fund Organizer Andrea Jansa will be sending live updates from house district 90 throughout the day. Please stay tuned for the latest information

12:00 pm update
Gathering with the large group of volunteers who are all here to help out the Curt Hanson campaign for Iowa house district 90. As soon as the auditor finishes updating the list of returned absentee ballots, we'll begin ballot chasing for the day. Ballot chasing includes talking to voters who requested absentee ballots, and offering to take their ballot to the auditor's office. Voters have until 4:30 today to either postmark their ballot or turn it in. After that they'll need to take absentee ballots to their polling location and return them before voting at the polls. The energy is high and everyone is excited to get out there and let voters know tomorrow is election day!

2:15 p.m. update
The volunteers have been sent out in pairs and triplets to "chase" outstanding ballots.  Matt, Craig, and I are working on our assinged lists of ballots.  All the volunteers are being utilized and we have until 4:30 to get our ballots picked up. 
Word is we'll be putting door-hangers on the doors of Fairfield residents this evening, so we'll all be getting our exercise in!
Driving around Fairfield has been a treat.  The homes are beautiful and you can tell the residents take pride in their properties and their community.  It's refreshing to see such a diverse area in what may be considered rural Iowa.  Everyone is very welcoming. 

9 p.m. update
The residents of Fairfield have definitely gotten a chance to get to know Curt Hanson volunteers! After we finished ballot chasing this afternoon, we took out a round of door hangers as reminders to voters who vote at the polls. The hangers also had information with each household's voting location.

I had a great conversation with a woman who completely supports Hanson and was really disturbed by the money coming in for Burgmeier from out-of-state organizations, such as the National Organization for Marriage.

Another great story comes from organizer Ryan Crane: During his stay in Fairfield, Ryan helped 94-year-old Lee Gobble write a letter encouraging his neighbors to vote for Curt Hanson. Since Lee wasn't able to get a letter to the editor into the newspaper in time, he paid for an ad to show his support.

Everyone is gearing up for a big day tomorrow. Stay tuned for stories throughout election day!

Friday, August 28, 2009

Five Days and Counting! We're coming down the final stretch!

By Ryan Crane, Fairness Fund Organizer

Just five days until the election! The tension and excitement is palpable as we learned more about how hard the opposition has been working. Burgmeier's campaign has been running TV ads and mailers, and the other two candidates are doing their part to engage as well.
Today we were preparing door hangers that will tell voters what precinct they can vote in on election day. And even though it rained virtually all day, we still had numerous volunteers step up and collect absentee ballots from folks who were procrastinating.
Dedication and hard-work seem to be the theme on the ground here, and it is inspiring to see how many Iowans are working for Mr. Hanson. I feel good to be part of what I'm sure will be the winning team.
But, like I said at the top, the opposition has seemed to come alive and is now finally working as hard as we are. And as many folks know, Republicans are known for turning out at the polls in large numbers. While we are excited and poised to do well, the next five days are probably the most important of the entire election. So please stay plugged in and help us win this!

PS - We're almost to $7,000 and the thermometer keeps moving up! Help us reach our goal of $10,000 by midnight tonight! Just click on the thermometer on the right!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

24 hours left! NOM in Iowa raises the stakes!

The National Organization for Marriage's "Reclaim Iowa" project has raised the stakes. On the ground in Iowa, NOM ads are blanketing the airwaves and newspapers across the country are reporting on NOM's scheme to overturn marriage equality in Iowa.

Your generous support has brought us halfway to our $10,000 goal.
We now have 24 hours to make up the difference. Please give today!

If Stephen Burgmeier wins this election, it will be spun as a victory for anti-gay marriage opponents in Iowa and across the country. We can't let this happen! Send a strong message to extremists who seek to buy elections in Iowa and across the country: Your anti-gay rhetoric has no place in the civil discussion!

Help us reach our goal by midnight Friday!
Goal Thermometer

With only days to go our organizers on the ground say the next 24 hours are crucial. We're being outgunned on the airwaves and we're scrambling to see that we have the funds needed to respond. Your support today could make all the difference between a win and a loss.

Whether it's $5, $10, or $100, every single donation counts! This is one election we cannot afford to lose. Help us reach our $10,000 goal by Friday at midnight!


Carolyn Jenison,
Chair, Fairness Fund

PS - Our organizers on the ground report we're beating our goals for absentee ballots returned. That's a good sign, but NOM's ads have fired up the right-wing base. We expect them to turn out in droves next Tuesday. Contribute now to make sure our supporters know what's at stake!

Hello from rainy Fairfield!

by Fairness Fund Organizer Ryan Crane

There were a number of state representatives and state senators who offered their help today-- not to mention the volunteers who have dutifully continued to knock doors (in ponchos!) and fill out postcards to constituents.
The absentee ballot chase I mentioned yesterday was a huge success, even beating the adjusted goals that were set on Monday. This, of course, raised morale and reminded us just how important and fruitful the work we are doing is.
As for me, I delivered yard signs, made volunteer recruitment calls, chased absentee ballots, and even attended a poll-watching training run by Mr. Hanson's campaign director, where I met some of the active community members who are determined to make sure that the opposition plays fair at the polls!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Another day closer to the election!

by Fairness Fund Regional Field Organizer Ryan Crane

The office buzzed with passers-by and volunteers today. A police officer, a community activist and some college students stopped by to see what they could do to help. Lots of postcards were filled out and lots of phone calls were made. Plus, the collection of absentee ballots is beating expectations!
Curt Hanson spent all afternoon patiently reaching out to to constituents over the phone, and was the most articulate and sharp candidate at a well-attended public debate in Fairfield this evening.
Tomorrow promises to be a little more fast-paced. Starting after lunch, an aggressive campaign to collect outstanding absentee ballots should bring in a huge number of votes that folks may have had just sitting on their counters. And as we continue working to beat expectations, the enthusiasm is building. You can really feel the sense of dedication rising!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

On the Ground in HD90!

by Fairness Fund Regional Field Organizer Ryan Crane

Greetings from Fairfield, IA!

On my first full day of assisting Democratic candidate Curt Hanson's campaign, the mood is good and the efforts are well-managed. Help is coming in from all corners -- AFSCME, community activists, state representatives, state senators, and unions -- and nearly every voter in the district has been contacted. Some more than once!

Just today, we beat the goal set for absentee ballots, requested and collected, ONE WEEK before the election.

I created some flyers to urge people to vote early at the courthouse, collected ballot requests and chased some absentee ballots door-to-door. I'm part of a team working hard to get every vote for Curt Hanson!

But there is a lot of urgency under the surface. Last night, when I expressed confidence in Hanson's prospects, almost all the staffers warned me the race would come down to the wire and be very close. Having worked on and volunteered for several campaigns in the past, I know this to be true. There is no winner until every vote is counted.

Stay tuned to the Fairness Fund blog. I'll be with you along the way to share my thoughts on the race and my perspective from the ground!

Counteract NOM's Ad buy in HD90!Goal Thermometer