Since I’m down here I thought I’d launch this topic with a live report on the ground.
FL is a closed primary state. Voters need not declare a party but if you don’t you don’t vote in the primary. Voter registration is trivial & can be done in conjunction with getting a driver’s license. We are a Real ID state, so there are some obstacles there for the severely undocumented. But none above and beyond the Federal Real ID standards. Absentee ballots are free for the asking for any reason or no reason and can be requested online. Both registration and absentee ballot requests remain in effect until changed. At least in my county we also have early voting for about 5 days before the primary election.
I live amongst mostly retired mid-level executives & former small businessmen. $2 million 2 BR condos owned by fatcats who stay there 3 weeks a year are nearby. As are working poor folks of all colors & accents living in crappy $800/mo 2 BR 1960s-era apartments. I see Maseratis & Bentleys driving every single day. And smoking rattling po’folks-mobiles every day too on the very same streets. Plus lots of caucasian-but-tanned construction dudes & fishermen in jacked up diesel pick-ups with train horns & confederate battle flag stickers in the windows.
In other words, I live in typical South Florida. It’s an ethnic & socioeconomic melting pot like nowhere else in the country. And I know LA, SF, and NYC pretty well.
The absentee ballots arrived yesterday en masse and my & my wife’s votes are already in the can. Our mailman was whining about the piles & piles.
So far I have received exactly zero campaign materials from any candidate from any party. I did get a generic request for money for the Ds which included the usual outrage triggers disguised as poll questions. It seemed pretty amateurish to me.
I saw my first Hillary bumper sticker today. It was a rather uninspiring & plain-looking slogan & logo.
I’ve seen a couple of Cruz, a couple of Trump, and a couple of Sanders stickers. No Rubio yet.
I’ve seen no yard signs for anyone.
I don’t watch a great deal of local TV, but from all other sources so far you can hardly tell there’s an election already inprogress.
So much for anecdata, here’s some commentary:
I made a thread about it awhile ago, but I cannot comprehend how the campaigns are letting people vote before any of them have done a damn thing to build a brand here.
To be sure I’ve voted with no procrastination which is uncommon. But 100% of anyone’s advertising will be wasted on me because I can’t change my vote even if they persuaded me to want to.
Campaigning costs money. I get that. But if the voting period is 25 days long you need to get at least some of your stuff out there before it begins, not in the 3 days before it ends.
One of these days a candidate will figure this out and sweep the field.