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Volunteers holding signs at polls?


KungFuPanda
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Volunteers Holding Signs at Polls  

50 members have voted

  1. 1. WHY? Have you ever stopped to vote or changed your vote because of a volunteer with a sign?

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    • No
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    • Other
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People are always holding election signs at the polls. Has this EVER caused you do stop and vote when you otherwise wouldn’t? Has it ever caused you to change your vote? I don’t understand why they do it. It was raining! What am I missing? Is there a purpose or do they just want to feel part of something bigger?

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No polling places here anymore.  

When we did have polling places, campaign materials such as signs were not allowed.  

I’ve never voted at a polling place except for one time a provisional ballot when my absentee ballot never arrived. That time it was an absolute zoo as many other voters were in my shoes and I wouldn’t have noticed a sign.  I did work as a polling place volunteer and observer in from 1997-2006 or thereabouts and never saw much in the way of sign holding.  

I voted absentee before we went all mail in because when I originally registered to vote, it was too late for anything besides an absentee and I never updated.  I prefer voting at home anyways.  

Edited by LucyStoner
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I doubt I would but in NZ all political advertising has to come down the day before the election (I guess only official stuff though).  I know workers at polling booths must dress and behave neutrally but I suppose I could stand outside with a sign but I have never seen it done.  We use schools, libraries, church halls etc as polling stations and there is usually one within walking distance and we always vote on Saturdays so maybe that limits such behaviour.

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We have a 40 foot boundary from the entrance of the polling place, which is marked off by tape. I don't believe that anyone has changed my vote, but I may have been influenced to cast a vote I otherwise would have left blank. Often these volunteers will have a flyer with the Dem or Republican candidates names, and I may have voted along a certain side due to a flyer and discussion. (I don't remember but think I have.)

One year, there was a group of homeschooled teens to encourage voters (on their own, no parents). While they weren't old enough to vote, it was very cool to see them there, a, "Hey, I know you!" moment. I would guess it was also an encouragement for other voters to see young people there and probably sparked more conversations than an older person would have.

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I was actually thinking of that same thing when I went to vote.  Signs aren't allowed near our polling station, but on the main drag leading up to it, there are lots and lots of signs and pickup trucks with ads, etc.  I, too, was wondering if that actually changed anyone's vote?

In the end, I think that yes-- it might.  I think there are some people who simply check off a name they're familiar with, especially if it's an office that doesn't seem so important.  

 

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When I went to early voting, I had to walk a gauntlet of people trying to shake my hands or hand me leaflets. They have to stay a certain distance from the polling place, but they crowded the sidewalk leading from the parking lot to the door. Plus all those people are taking up space in the parking lot. When I was leaving, all the signs along the road made it really difficult to see to turn out of the lot.

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I’ve never seen anyone holding signs near a polling place! I’ve voted in a couple different states and in 5 different locations but never seen that. 

I do know we have rules in place as to how far away signage must be. 

ETA: but no it would annoy me instead of influence my vote. 

Edited by Rachel
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Nope, and I find it annoying.  I also find it annoying when they try to be friendly and talk to you.  It makes me feel like a jerk because I have no intentions of talking to anyone at the polling place.  I feel like my vote is my personal private business.

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This year one particular group that had signs for a few locals running for school board caused me to vote for the other school board candidates instead. The group was promoting a side I completely disagree with so if they were also promoting those three candidates, it helped me decide who not to vote for. It's never had any impact prior to this one time though. 

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4 hours ago, J-rap said:

I was actually thinking of that same thing when I went to vote.  Signs aren't allowed near our polling station, but on the main drag leading up to it, there are lots and lots of signs and pickup trucks with ads, etc.  I, too, was wondering if that actually changed anyone's vote?

In the end, I think that yes-- it might.  I think there are some people who simply check off a name they're familiar with, especially if it's an office that doesn't seem so important.  

 

 

 

There were people with signs from both sides of a contentious local issue. I told both of them "I already know how I'm voting" and just continued on in. But I know they were there to talk to anyone that wanted to. If someone was still uncertain seeing someone to talk to may have made them think "Hey, I have a question to ask" and with both sides present, they could get two perspectives on the issue.

 

(One thing I have been reminded of -- even though there are only two votes -- Yes or No -- there are way more than two perspectives. People have different reasons for voting the same way.)

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I put other because sometimes I don't have enough information about local elections, and they supply what I need to know. We live in a township area, and it can be hard to know what our local stuff is--local papers often cover the main towns/cities, and not the township stuff. 

Locally, these people are generally enthusiastic but not intrusive and say things like, "We'd appreciate your support. Thanks for voting, regardless" kinds of things. 

Sometimes issues are worded such that you aren't sure which option is the one you mean to vote for (especially if it's a new issue replacing an old issue--you are sometimes voting counterintuitively to support or to reject the issue). The people who hold these signs often know that answer, and I appreciate it. 

Mostly, local candidates do this to let people know that they don't take it for granted that you are going to vote for them even if they are a shoe-in for the job. They want to have a presence that shows they are engaged. 

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They are allowed here but must not be within 100 feet of the door of the polling place. I have never changed my mind because of a sign! I think they are there for the purpose of increasing name recognition for those who aren't overly familiar with all of the candidates. People will be more likely to vote for "Bill Smith" if they don't know anything about the candidates if they just saw a sign with his name on it.

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