Canvassing is All About Showing Up

(This diary is well worth reading--thanks to AlanF for the cross-post. - promoted by desmoinesdem)

I originally posted this diary at Activist Land, Daily Kos, and Blue Mass Group. desmoinesdem was kind enough to ask me to post it here as well. The comments at Daily Kos and Blue Mass Group were very worthwhile. Please also see desmoinedem’s Friendly advice: How to talk to non-supporters about Obama.

I co-lead a local group of Obama supporters preparing to canvass in New Hampshire, the swing state closest to us. (For those unfamiliar with the term, “canvassing” means going door-to-door for a candidate, putting yourself in touch with voters and the canvass on your sneakers in contact with the sidewalk.) One member sent me this question:

How does one prepare for canvassing? My support for Obama is largely subjective based on his handling of various situations. I don’t think that will help me to be an effective canvasser – suggestions?

I’d like to point her to a nice succinct “elevator pitch,” and any links or suggestions would be welcome. But I also want to use this as an opening to hold forth on what canvassing is about, how to enjoy it, and why (to paraphrase Woody Allen) ninety percent of success in canvassing is just showing up.

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