Things To Do On Your Own
You don’t have to register as a volunteer to do things to help the campaign. There are numerous things you can do on your own, either independent of the campaign or in concert with it. Below is a partial list of suggested topics.
Watch the Web
This is probably the easiest thing to do. If you’re surfing the web and happen to notice that some website features the gubernatorial candidates and the Libertarians are not listed among them, contact the site’s webmaster and ask (politely) that they are included. You can point them to this website (www.KenK.org) for more info about the campaign and for a downloadable headshot (www.KenK.org/headshot). This approach has been 100% successful so far, and it should be easy for you to help maintain that stellar record.
If you’re a member of any forum, whether political or not, you can always talk up the campaign. Just make sure that it fits in somehow with the conversation at hand and the overall purpose of the forum, lest you be considered some sort of spammer. And always be polite, of course. You won’t win any friends for Liberty by calling them a bonehead (even if they are — remember that many non-boneheads are reading your posts too, and you don’t want to alienate them). If you’re unsure how to respond to a specific issue, you can familiarize yourself with the Libertarian stand on the topic by reviewing the campaign website, and if you’re still unsure, feel free to contact the campaign directly. Also, be sure to include a link to www.KenK4PA.com every time you post something. In fact, many people include it in their forum sig line just to be sure they always get it in there.
Another thing you can do on the web is to comment on articles. As with the Forums, posting a comment on an article can get the Libertarian word out to an audience already predisposed to the topic at hand. If the reader has made it as far as the comments, you can be sure they’re interested, so adding your own comment definitely reaches our target audience. Comments typically tend to live a very long time and can’t be changed after a very short time, so make sure you get it right the first time. Of course, all the courtesy guidelines for posting to forums should apply here as well.
Arrange for a Visit to Local Schools
Schools are probably the most fertile ground for hosting a high-profile gubernatorial candidate. In fact, during the 2002 gubernatorial race, more than half of the public appearances were at schools. Typically it was colleges and high schools, but there were also many middle schools, even the third grade! These kids are the future of the country, and it gives them a good grounding to be exposed to Libertarian ideals at an early age. Your best bet to set up a visit is to contact the school’s political science or social sciences department and ask them if they’d like the Libertarian gubernatorial candidate to address the students. Calling the principal also works, as does asking your children to ask their teachers. Be aware that there is more than one
Civic groups, such as Kiwanis, Lions, the PTA, the League of Women Voters, civic associations, historical societies, professional organizations, and even churches are likely to be very receptive to entertaining a visit. They routinely invite guests to address their meetings, so it may as well be a Libertarian.
Host Your Own Gathering
Kicking it up a notch, you can always step out from behind your keyboard, and the easiest way to do that is to host a meeting. It’s not as difficult as it may seem. It only takes two steps. Step One is to locate a suitable meeting place. It could be your home, but a better idea is to meet at a local restaurant that has a private room (meeting at the bar is often too noisy an environment). These rooms are typically available at no charge because of the revenue they generate for the restaurant. Step Two is to invite an audience, typically your friends and acquaintances from work or church. And don’t be disappointed if you can only get a handful of people to show up. There are always holes in the campaign schedule that can be productively filled in by stopping by to meet a few of your friends.
Snag a Vendor Table
Whether it’s a gun show, community block party, county fair, political conference, or any sort of event that someone else is hosting, often they make tables available to political candidates at a modest price or even free. Contact the campaign for a supply of literature that you can distribute.
Make Your Own News!
Yes, it sounds scary, but you can make your own news. This might involve holding a rally in favor of something (such as open carry, marijuana smoke outs, gun buybacks, jury nullification, etc.) or a protest against something (such as unfair ballot access, being shut out of a debate, eminent domain seizures, suspicionless DUI checkpoints, etc.). All of them involve the same
Hold a Fundraiser
Money is the mother’s milk of politics, it is said, and accurately so. Campaign contributions magically turn into flyers, yard signs, banner ads, TV and radio commercials, and more. There are several forms that fundraisers can take. One of them is to host a gathering (see above) and charge admission at the door. That admission could include niceties like dinner, an open bar, door prizes, 50/50 tickets, silent auctions, and more.
Your Idea Here
Have an off-the-wall idea to spread the Libertarian message of the campaign? Maybe it’s Libertarian night at the local roller rink, judging for American Idol, or a dunk tank at the county fair (uh… maybe not), feel free to use your imagination. This list is not meant to be exhaustive, and some of the most interesting events from 2002 were suggested by volunteers. So don’t count out that wacky idea right off the bat; it may fit in well with some Liberty-oriented theme. And feel free to discuss your thoughts on the Volunteers e-mail list. Everyone has posting authority; don’t hesitate to use it. To sign up for the list, submit the form immediately to the left on this page.
Regardless of what you have in mind or how much effort you’re willing to put into it, just do it! Great campaigns are made up of many, many hands all doing small deeds that, taken together, make for one very large result. When I ran for governor in 1998 against Tom Ridge, the campaign broke virtually every Pennsylvania Libertarian record for that office. When I ran for governor in 2002 against Ed Rendell, the campaign broke every Pennsylvania Libertarian record for that office. Let’s go for the hat trick and make it three out of three. But, as with the previous races, it won’t happen without you, the volunteer. And don’t hesitate to contact the campaign directly if you have any questions.