Precinct Captains and precinct organizers are crucial to the success of candidates–and Democrats don’t have nearly enough of them in Canyon County.
Precinct Captains gather information from voters in their local area that candidates at all levels need.
Candidates start their campaigns by appealing to known Democratic supporters for donations and volunteer help. Then candidate teams work to persuade undecided voters to vote for them. Finally, as election day approaches, teams Get Out The Vote (GOTV) by making sure both original and newly-persuaded supporters get to the polls.
Precinct Captains make it possible for candidates to know who the Democratic supporters and the undecided voters are. Without this information each Democratic candidate has to use their volunteer time and donations figuring it out on their own. Without good voter information, each candidate needs to knock hundreds of extra doors. This is a very inefficient way for Democrats to win elections.
This problem is compounded because often candidates don’t share the information they find out about voters. For example, none of the information the presidential candidates figure out about Canyon County voters will be shared with the Canyon County Democrats or our local candidates.
When precinct captains figure out which voters are which, every Democratic candidate – local, statewide, or federal – is able to use that information to help their campaigns. And the information will be available to candidates in future elections as well as this one. The information Precinct Captains gather this year will help Democratic candidates for years.
To be a good Precinct Captain you start by introducing yourself to the other known Dems in your area (we have lists). I promise that many of these Dems will be happy to hear from you. It is likely that they feel isolated, and you can show them that they aren’t alone. Some of these Dems will probably be interested in helping you and soon you’ll have a small team.
The next job is to talk to some of the 100s of voters that we know nothing about. Information on which voters are Democrats, middle-of-the-road, undecided, or Republicans is incredibly helpful to every Democratic candidate.
It also helps if Precinct Captains can discuss what issues matter to all of these voters. Are the people in your precinct mostly worried about their kids’ schools? Or their healthcare options? Or the environment? Knowing what voters care about helps Democratic candidates understand their constituents and makes it possible for them to connect with voters on the issues that matter.
As a Precinct Captain you may also find yourself registering new voters, helping people with absentee forms, and driving people to the polls on election day. And you’ll help with GOTV efforts by making sure all the Democrats in your precinct actually get out and vote.
Precinct Captains have other duties within the structure of the Democratic party. They elect the District Chairs and County officers who vote on the Idaho Democratic party leadership. (Between you and me though, no other duties are nearly as important as getting to know the Democrats in your neighborhood.)
By becoming a Precinct Captain you can make an impact on Democratic campaigns this year and in the future.
If you are even a little interested, email us at CanyonCountyDems@gmail.com. We can get coffee and talk more about your precinct.
And do it soon. Ada County has invited Canyon County Precinct Captains and potential Precinct Captains to a training on Feb. 22. Even if you are just curious, you can attend this training to learn more. https://www.eventbrite.com/e/precinct-captain-training-tickets-86747242337