Election turnout

By

Something about this poll doesn't add up to me.

Politics is a water—cooler topic, a dinner—table subject, an issue to discuss after Sunday services, and this year the interest of American voters is at its highest level in more than a decade.

That renewed attention could translate into higher voter turnout on Nov. 7, according to an Associated Press—Pew poll.

Wasn't Pew the group that ginned up the poll showing so much voter concern about campaign financing while McCain Feingold was being debated?

I just spent over a week visiting friends and relatives across the country and there was not a single mention of politics in any conversation unless I first raised the issue about how local races were going.  I somehow doubt all my acquaintances are in that 30% who don't care.  I particularly asked one conservative friend who works in a government office dominated by liberals how things were going in the office and she said there had been very little discussion of politics at work and nothing at all about Foley.  

Nor did I overhear that many conversations about politics around me in the many restaurants, coffee shops, shops and lounges I visited.  Even in St. Paul and Minneapolis, Minnesota, where six months ago I noticed that many cars still carried Kerry and even Wellstone bumper stickers, I saw little indication of high voter interest.  In fact, it seemed to me that many of those old bumper stickers had been retired not to be replaced with open shows of support for Democrats currently in statewide races.  From what I saw and heard while passing through Chicago, I suspect the topic around the water cooler is far more likely to be da' Bears awesome 5—0 start,  not the governor's race between two ethically challenged lifelong politicians. 
 
My own suspicions are that people are starting to heavily resent the intrusive nature of modern campaigning, especially those #@&*^ annoying canned phone messages I seem to being getting several times a day.  The saturation of negative TV ads during the local news doesn't help, either, nor does screeching from the extremes of both parties.  Negative intensity tends to encourage most people to distance themselves from a topic, not to join in.
 
Also, notice the bit about women voters being concerned that jobs for their children are hard to find. They must have polled residents of some other planet. It seemed that every other business I walked into during my 2400+ mile drive had a big displays advertising job openings at good wages, many with benefits.   In much of the country there seems to be more work than there are willing and able bodies to do it all.

Rosslyn Smith   10 11 06

Something about this poll doesn't add up to me.

Politics is a water—cooler topic, a dinner—table subject, an issue to discuss after Sunday services, and this year the interest of American voters is at its highest level in more than a decade.

That renewed attention could translate into higher voter turnout on Nov. 7, according to an Associated Press—Pew poll.

Wasn't Pew the group that ginned up the poll showing so much voter concern about campaign financing while McCain Feingold was being debated?

I just spent over a week visiting friends and relatives across the country and there was not a single mention of politics in any conversation unless I first raised the issue about how local races were going.  I somehow doubt all my acquaintances are in that 30% who don't care.  I particularly asked one conservative friend who works in a government office dominated by liberals how things were going in the office and she said there had been very little discussion of politics at work and nothing at all about Foley.  

Nor did I overhear that many conversations about politics around me in the many restaurants, coffee shops, shops and lounges I visited.  Even in St. Paul and Minneapolis, Minnesota, where six months ago I noticed that many cars still carried Kerry and even Wellstone bumper stickers, I saw little indication of high voter interest.  In fact, it seemed to me that many of those old bumper stickers had been retired not to be replaced with open shows of support for Democrats currently in statewide races.  From what I saw and heard while passing through Chicago, I suspect the topic around the water cooler is far more likely to be da' Bears awesome 5—0 start,  not the governor's race between two ethically challenged lifelong politicians. 
 
My own suspicions are that people are starting to heavily resent the intrusive nature of modern campaigning, especially those #@&*^ annoying canned phone messages I seem to being getting several times a day.  The saturation of negative TV ads during the local news doesn't help, either, nor does screeching from the extremes of both parties.  Negative intensity tends to encourage most people to distance themselves from a topic, not to join in.
 
Also, notice the bit about women voters being concerned that jobs for their children are hard to find. They must have polled residents of some other planet. It seemed that every other business I walked into during my 2400+ mile drive had a big displays advertising job openings at good wages, many with benefits.   In much of the country there seems to be more work than there are willing and able bodies to do it all.

Rosslyn Smith   10 11 06