Sunday, May 24, 2009

Letter: Apt. Buildings Not Hospitable to Candidates

Hi Steve,

Interesting reading about issues campaigning in apartment buildings. [See HeraldTrib Today May 22, 2009 --ST] In the 1990s, I was precinct captain in Rosslyn and Wilson. At the time there used to be a lot more garden apartments, and I would enter (if I could) and drop literature for candidates.

Problem was, virtually every building had a sign banning soliciting or a locked front door. Often I did it anyway if I could get in. In the larger, often fancier buildings, however, delivering lit or going door to door would get you thrown out -- fast. If there was a doorman, forget it.

ACDC has struggled for years to develop a high-rise initiative (using the mail and folks who live in the buildings) and it has paid off, but the fact is apartment buildings aren't hospitable to candidates. And that's quite likely why candidates avoid them, even though you could quickly meet more people faster than going door to door in a single family neighborhood.

Jason Rylander
The writer is the Press and Public Relations Chair for the Arlington County Democratic Committee --ST

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Locked doors hinder both a candidate and his/her opposition. It's a wash.

I am personally not impressed by candidates and their supporters who attempt to obtain my vote by visiting my home. While this may show that the candidate or the supporter has energy, it does not show that the candidate has good judgement. Many people are turned off by salespeople, missionaries and candidates who disturb them while they have better things to do. The repetitive phone calls during election season are bad enough; visits by candidates and supporters are even worse.

Candidates and their supporters should find better ways to meet voters. Making themselves available at Metro stations, libraries, before and after parades, sports and community events, etc., are among those methods.

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