Skip to comments.Flashback to 1996: A Day When Buses Were Used in New Orleans
Posted on 09/14/2005 11:18:36 AM PDT by pkajj
Political Machine Turned Out Votes N.O. Style 10 November 1996 The Baton Rouge Advocate
NEW ORLEANS - Red beans, parades and a thousand people all were part of the push that got nearly 186,000 voters to New Orleans polls on Election Day and gave Democrat Mary Landrieu a U.S. Senate victory.
Republican Louis "Woody" Jenkins has refused to concede defeat to Landrieu, who had an unofficial 5,899-vote lead after voting machines were opened Friday. The statewide tally released by the secretary of state on Friday was Landrieu 853,076, Jenkins 847,177, the closest Senate election in Louisiana history. Campaign manager Tony Perkins said volunteers will be working all weekend, checking out hundreds of complaints - especially in New Orleans, where Landrieu led Jenkins 143,050 to 42,653.
Bob Tucker, a businessman and close advisor to New Orleans Mayor Marc Morial, said it was Morial's get-out-the-vote teams that won the day for Landrieu, President Clinton and Orleans Parish Leader Harry Connick. "All elections begin and end in the streets on election day. That's where the Clinton, Landrieu and Connick team won Tuesday," Tucker said.
For instance, when the management team got word at 3:15 p.m. Tuesday that a GOP tracking poll showed Jenkins ahead, it was time for an instant parade. "Within 45 minutes, we arranged a motorcade," Tucker said. "We found Mary and Marc, got school buses for workers and sound trucks with music and put on a parade to flush out our voters." Landrieu and Morial waved from campaign manager Norma Jane Sabiston's convertible.
"We moved them into the major housing project areas blowing horns and playing New Orleans music," Tucker said. "We were doing what we do best in New Orleans, having a parade." There were more parades in key areas during "surge time" - late afternoon and evening, when people get off work.
Tucker's teams tracked the turnout all day in target precincts. If the vote was slow compared to past elections, some of the 1,000 street workers were sent there to knock on doors and ask people to vote. A phone bank worked all day, asking voters to go to the polls.
The street workers were divided into two groups of 500 -one for the morning, and one for the afternoon. Those were split into four groups: One to work polling places; one to wave signs at intersections; one to go door-to-door; and one to go to shopping centers and employment centers.
The one time all were together was at lunch, when all 1,000 got a lunch of red beans and rice.
Fact: The DemonRats are hideous, foul little creatures from the backed up sewers of hell.
But for how long? Now that we have it.
That's what that woman said on Rush's show, "I'll bet those buses were running on election day".
Mary Landrieu is totally involved in a campaign to distract attention from the incompetence of the State Democratic machine. No scruples, no shame.
Well, it's all been just a simple mistake then.
Mayor Nagin should have tasked the Louisiana Democrat Party apparatus for the response instead of her Office of Homeland Security.
Had he done so, within 15 minutes they'd have had buses out gathering those people from those overpasses.
They would have been festooned with leftover Gore bumperstickers, but they would have been alive.
Where every did they get the bus drivers in 45 minutes? I thought you couldn't get people to work in Naw'lins even on a sunny day?
How can she stand to look at herself in the mirror?
Blanko has been consulting with Fidel through all of this!
Mary Landrieu still has some of her baby fat.
Thanks for the ping, I'd have missed it!
Thank you for finding this. I searched quite a bit last week to see if I could find pictures of the busses being used, but ....
Now, if the MSM would pick up on this.....
(I can dream, can't I??)
I was active and worked for Woody Jenkins in that campaign. There were several stories about the GOTV (get out the vote) effort. Here's one I archived.
"The Times-Picayune" - New Orleans, LA - Saturday, November 9, 1996
Getting voters to the polls
By Iris Kelso
NEW ORLEANS - All elections begin and end in the streets on election day, Bob Tucker says. Thats where the Clinton, Landrieu and Connick team won Tuesday.
Tucker, a businessman who is a close advisor to New Orleans Mayor Marc Morial, was talking about the GOTV, or get-out-the-vote effort, for which Morial has become known in political circles all over the country.
It was in place for President Clinton, Mary Landrieu for the U. S. Senate and Harry Connick for district attorney. All three won the day in New Orleans.
This is no helter-skelter effort to create interest in the election, distribute sample ballots and campaign materials. Heres how Tucker describes it: Its sophisticated, surgical and solid, whether for a candidate or an issue. And most importantly, it delivers. I dont think theres a better organized election day effort anywhere in the country, including Chicago, he said.
This is the kind of organization that won for Morial in the 1994 mayors election. I thas been put into place in every election in which he has had an interest since. And the plan has been improved for every election.
We get together after the election and go over every detail, Tucker says. What did we do well? What could be refined? Did the red beans we served our workers have too much garlic? We critique everything.
Tuesdays work to get African-American voters to the polls began at the True Gospel of Jesus Christ Church on North Broad Street before the polling places opened. About 1,000 wokers would hit the streets that day, 500 in the morning operation and 500 that afternoon.
Gathering in the churchs large courtyard, members of the first crew of the street workers got colored stickers that told them their assignments. All this was carefully planned, down to where each team would meet in the courtyard. Those with green stickers worked the polling places. Blues waved signs and asked for votes at street intersections. Reds went door to door in neighborhoods. And the orange team worked shopping centers and employment centers. Each team equipped with a cellular phone so it could be contacted from headquarters.
Team leaders met with their workers in the churchs fellowship hall, making sure their team members knew their assignments and had their materials, including extra batteries for their cell phones.
Morning and afternoon crews ate their red beans and rice together at lunchtime at the church, then the afternoon crews went out.
The teams included unclassified workers from City Hall and the Regional Transit Authority and workers - paid and volunteer - for Clinton, Landrieu and Connick. Members of small political organizations backing those candidates also were on the teams.
Every election day headquarters is Crisis City. At 3:15 that afternoon, the management team got word that Republicans had a tracking poll showing Landrieu behind in the vote.
Within 45 minutes, we arranged a motorcade, Tucker says. We found Mary and Marc, got school buses for workers and sound trucks with music and put on a parade to flush out our voters. Mary and Marc were in Norma Jane Sabistons little red convertible. (Sabiston was Landrieus campaign manager.) It was a tight fit for Marc, big as he is, but they were both up there waving. We moved them into the major housing project areas blowing horns and playing New Orleans music. We were doing what we do best in New Orleans, having a parade.
All day long and by the hour at campaign headquarters, the team headed by Tucker got reports from target precincts. Voter turnout in those precincts was compared to computerized data from previous elections. When voting was slow at one precinct compared to past elections, troops were shifted in school buses to work that neighborhood, asking people to vote.
Meanwhile, a phone bank was operating at another location with workers calling voters asking them to go to the polls.
At surge time, from 4:30 to 7:30 p. m., when large numbers of voters get off work and go to the polling places, there were more parades in key areas.
None of this works, says Tucker, without planning, coordination and direction. Among those running the show from the church headquarters were Tucker, the mayors brother, Jacques Morial, Steve Hand, Vincent Sylvain, Henry Dillon and Angelo Wilson. Anthony Mumphreys, a professional planner and businessman who organized Morials 1992 election day effort, was working at another location, heading the GOTV campaign for white voters.
There is only one thing you can control in politics, and thats your election day effort, says Tucker. Thats why we emphasize it. If you plan it right and execute it right, youre going to get a better result. We couldnt have asked for a better result for the Clinton, Landrieu, Connick teams on Tuesday.
CALMING THE WATERS:
City Councilman Oliver Thomas says Sabiston, on loan to Landrieus campaign from Sen. John Breauxs office, did a masterful job mending fences with black leaders who were concerned about Landrieus failure to endorse African-American Congressman Cleo Fields in the governors race. She held a lot of private meetings with black leaders, he said. There were a lot of angry words, but she was cool. She told them, Do what you gotta do, but keep your eyes on the prize. The prize was the U. S. Senate seat.
Iris Kelso is a staff writer.
Where you the one that sent this to Rush? He just mentioned the article on his show and he will do some more research on it.... LOL!!!
I think he's going to read it now.
I didn't send it to Rush, but I'm glad someone did.
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