You should never take things personally on a campaign. Thats a lesson my dad taught me since I was old enough to walk and pass push cards. My philosophy is that if I'm working a polling place, I might as well have some fun while I'm out there. So I make friends with the other volunteers, shoot the breeze, share water and burritos, and push for my candidate.
But things inevitably get a little heated on the campaign trail, which is stupid because you will never win and the only losers are the candidates.
Usually its a shouting match between campaign volunteers that breaks out.
Earlier today though the hostility was much different. My frequent co-host Sammy C and I hit the streets early this morning to stop by some polling places to see how things were going. We wanted to show some love to the campaign volunteers because they are the die hards. They take time out of their personal lives and walk around trying to win a few votes for their candidate.
They are the unsung heroes of campaigns.
We went to Pavo Real and ran in to some campaign volunteers. One was a young Chicano in his 20's. Since that is a pretty rare sight in terms of volunteering, I thought I'd interview the guy. He happened to be a supporter of Naomi Gonzalez. We were all set to do the interview when a lady in a pick up truck pulled up and jumped out of the truck telling the guy not to interview with me, going so far as to say, “he's not our friend”.
I thought it was a really low-class thing to do because I was just going to ask why he was there and why he was supporting his candidate. No biggie and its something I do every election cycle. But for some reason, this lady was having a fit about it.
Turns out, the lady was State Representative Marissa Marquez's tia, Margie. She happens to be the same tia that was running State Representative Marissa Marquez's office on a volunteer basis following Marquez's decision to let go her assistant Alice Rosas.
That's an interesting turn of events because Marquez has publicly denied aiding Naomi Gonzalez in her bid to unseat her rival, State Representative Norma Chavez. Marquez went so far as to call Paul Strelzin to assure him that she was not helping Naomi Gonzalez. I happened to be in the room when Paul took her call.
The question is, why is Marquez denying her involvement publicly? What is the point? If she's helping Gonzalez, so what? Chavez helped her get elected over Chavez's rival, former State Representative Paul Moreno.
No Justice, No Peace in Justice of the Peace Race
As if that wasn't bad enough, things got a lot worse in the afternoon. Justice of the Peace Monica Teran got in to an argument with her opponent, John Chatman. It was embarrassing.
I missed the first few seconds of the argument because I didn't realize they were arguing at first. Then I started rolling and Teran actually started playing to the camera, which is surprising coming from someone who wears the black robe.
I then went to speak with her to get some foundation as to why the signs her removed. She was very hostile and frankly rude to me because she said my friend (Sammy C) was rude to her. In Sammy's defense, he was trying to get the candidates to act like, well, candidates.
I returned her sharp tone with a stern reply and told her she had to reason to be rude to me and that one would expect better temperament from a justice of the peace.
And candidates wonder why we have such low voter turn out!?!?