Extremely low voter turnout has come to define American elections. Many Americans feel their vote does NOT make a difference that it won’t matter and ALL politicians are the same. Americans believe that politicians don’t REALLY care about the average American so why bother wasting time to voting. Many of the new voter requirements only add to the mayhem. For African Americans these factors are exacerbated!
That is until Barack Obama. Barack Obama’s first presidential run in 2008 saw huge turnouts including voters who never voted before. Local voters confessed that even though they were well over voting age some several years to decades eligible said that they either never felt their vote mattered or they never felt the desire. That is until President Barack Obama. As such there seemed to be a sense of urgency.
The Obama factor as it were. 2012 election would be no different in terms of voter turnout. Initially, when Barack Obama run for the office of the President it was questioned, how can someone with only community organizer experience get elected?
Organize for America (O.F.A.), the grass roots organization that helped get the President elected using the skills the President himself perfected as a community organizer would morph throughout the campaign. The extremely well organized efforts of O.F.A. went into high gear.
A campaign that included all, encourage all and involved all only added to Americans desire to get out and vote to live the country’s creed giving Americans the mindset that their vote really would count. The President’s conversations about hope and change rang an even keener note.
Taking full advantage of technology, social media and good old fashion “We the people”. The efficiency, use of technology and personable nature of the campaign really hit home with the masses. Many felt not only the need to help the President but to also save the American political system and finally the process would be much more reflective of other and different portions of the electorate.
Get Out the Vote (GOTV) turned up campaign efforts to do just what the name suggest. Campaign workers literally knocked on thousands of doors and made thousands of phone calls. Workers first goal was to sure up the Democratic vote and get them to commit to support the President and vote for him. Then there was what was referred to as the, “persuasion call”. These are calls where campaign workers try and persuade a voter of a different political affiliation to support and or vote for President Obama.
Locally, The Presidents’ endorsement for Proposition 2 (known as the save our families bill) drew an alliance with the United Auto Workers (UAW) which further aided the campaign.
In Michigan Detroit voters had waits from two to four hours. Voters in Ohio waits were anywhere from six to eight hours. Voters in Florida reported waits over eight hours in some cases.