GOTV by Party

In the last post on GOTV, I reviewed the research on effective techniques.  The short answer is that the more personal the technique, the more effective it is.  So how are Kuhl and Massa's GOTV efforts stacking up?

The Massa campaign tends to live "out loud" on the Internet, so we can see that they've gotten the message about canvassing.  Last week, they began door-to-door efforts in Monroe and Ontario counties.  These counties are the newest addition to the 29th and residents there are probably the least acquainted with either candidate.   The Massa campaign is clearly doing their best with their limited resources.  If they receive some help from the Spitzer and Clinton campaigns, they might be able to have a GOTV effort that yields results next month.

Since the Kuhl campaign has a much less active Internet presence, we have to infer their plans from national Republican GOTV stories.  The Republican strategy, called the 72-Hour program, is the result of years of research by Republicans.  The GOP believes that they know the right mix of direct mail, phone contact and door-to-door solicitation that will turn out their base.  Republicans also tend to spend more on GOTV than Democrats, and they start earlier to make sure absentee voters cast their ballots.

The GOP honed their GOTV effort in last month's Rhode Island primary. Using a combination of microtargeting -- careful identification of sub-groups -- along with a large number of paid professionals brought in from out-of-state, Lincoln Chafee was able to beat back a strong primary challenge.   Republicans viewed this election as a dry run for November.

The Kuhl campaign has the potential of using the most sophisticated GOTV template in the business, but in a tough year, it's not clear what kind of resources they'll get to run the 72-Hour plan in the 29th.


A note on the 72 hour strategy: the two big successes were Georgia and Ohio. A cynic would say it's the Diebold machines, but another angle there is that the turn-out was most successful in "exurbs", specifically suburban areas lined to but quite far from Atlanta, Cleveland, and Cinncinnatti. That would seem well-geared Pittsford, Brighton, etc. but not so much to the southern tier.