OK, I take it back. One more political post, although I think this one isn’t likely to annoy anyone.
We’ve got a ton of political mailings this year, more than any year I can remember. That’s been fueled by a tight race for Dick Lugar’s US Senate seat and a battle for our state senate seat that is very tough thanks to redistricting. In these final days before Election Day the mailers are flooding in. Yesterday alone we got five.
One was particularly odd.
It came from a group that I would assume, based on its name, to be backing Republican candidates based. But it said nothing about any candidates, any ballot issues, any parties, or anything else we’ll be voting on in Indiana. Instead it thanked me for voting in the past. Then it said they had conducted an audit of voting records and thought I would like to see whether or not my neighbors had voted. Below was a list of six people around us with whether they had voted in 2008 and 2010 noted next to their names and addresses. Then came a promise to update the audit after this year’s election and to share those results.
I wasn’t sure whether it was just weird or freaky. What was I supposed to do with this information? Go badger the people who were listed as not voting to get off their asses and vote for the same people I plan on voting for? Or use it to go door-to-door to my neighbors who weren’t listed either way and start asking nosey questions about their voting habits? Or just sit in quiet judgement of the people around me?
Anyone can access voting records. But collating the data like this and then sending out mass mailings feels a little creepy to me.