10am Entered polling place (sadly, this photo was eaten by iphoto). Imagine one boy, 8, with a cold but determined to make his mark today nonetheless, one girl, 4, who has decided she's for Obama because "he's more fair" and one girl, 11 months, who has no clue about any of it but is happy to be hanging with her peeps.
10-11:30am Waited on line. Ate snacks from bake sale. Said hello to many neighbors and friends who passed by on their way in or out. Walked Mairead up and down the hallways and fed her corn muffin.
11:30-12 Ate a quick lunch
12:15pm Mama and Boy Entered Obama-Biden Headquarters in NYC.
He did not do this sideways, but iphoto's not working and everything with the pictures is FUBAR for the moment, so bear with us here.
12: 20pm We entered HQ on the 5th floor. The woman at the desk took one look at Declan and said, "you ready to make some calls?" She gave us a ton of special phone bank stickers and Obama/Biden stickers and signs, and told us to go around the corner to Room A.
12:25 Darby, a campaign worker, gave us our script and a quick training in how to use it--we weren't doing "persuasion calls," this was get out the vote work, and we weren't supposed to rip people a new one if they said they were voting for McPain--and then passed out sheets of names of Florida voters in Broward, Jackson, and Gadsden Counties.
12:30 Began making calls. Notice Boy in green shirt in the back.
He's saying, "Hello, my name is Declan and I'm a volunteer with Barack Obama's Campaign for Change. I'm calling to remind you that today is election day. Have you voted yet?" If yes, then "Wonderful, thank you!" If he got an answering machine he left a detailed message reminding them of where their polling location was (it was on the sheet next to their number) and giving out several numbers or websites they could use to arrange a ride to the polls or report problems or get info.
Then we noted what happened on our call sheets.
Our first set of numbers had been pretty well worked over only about an hour or so before. When some campaign workers came in waving fistfulls of sheets with NEW NUMBERS on them, we felt like the guys in Glengarry Glenn Ross, desperate to get their hands on the new leads.
We dialed, and dialed, and dialed.
The guy dialing in front of us said he'd gotten his start volunteering in presidential elections around the same age as Declan when his parents brought him to make calls for Lyndon Johnson.
Once we got a babysitter who said the people we'd called weren't home and she was voting for McCain. She sounded a little grumpy. We were sweet about it. We knew she was gonna feel bad about that decision one day, or maybe later that night. Once we got a man who said "I just came back from voting," in a deep southern accent. "Just got in about twenty minutes ago." Then he asked us, "what I want to know is, is he still the leader?" I told him we didn't know yet but that they'd be telling us on tv before long. "Oh, when they do that?" he asked. "About 7 or 8 tonight," I said. He sure sounded excited. We had a good feeling about Florida.
After we made about 100 calls--mostly it was Declan--we called it a day. The boy was red and hot with his fever--and not just election fever. The kid had an honest to goodness fever. Even sick he pulled out all the stops for Obama.
5pm------We started watching the coverage. Eva peeled off around 8. Declan stayed in the game until 9:30. At around 11, this happened:
Maybe, just maybe, we had a little something to do with it.
After all, he won Florida didn't he?