How I Spent My PA Primary Day

How did you spend PA primary day? I spent it at Firehouse #4 in Munhall, PA, handing out literature for Ron Paul delegates.

I arrived before 8 AM, introduced myself to the Judge of Elections, and found a spot outside the door to set up shop. There I met a nice Hillary supporter named Allison. She and I discussed/debated politics for most of the day. Later, two more Hillary supporters, John and his Aunt Kitty, spent some time at the precinct and tossed in their two cents. I think it was intellectually stimulating for all of us. All three expressed high admiration for Ron Paul as the only Republican they’d consider voting for (albeit only under duress). I convinced Kitty to check out the Read the Bills Act and the Enumerated Powers Act. :)

One thing I learned from the Hillary supporters and direct experience is that Munhall is a staunchly Democratic region. There are about 1100 registered voters in the precinct I worked. Of those, only 218 are Republicans (< 20%). In the last election, 58 of them voted. Yesterday, 532 voters showed up at the polls. Of those, 52 (9.8%) were Republicans. The following is a breakdown of how they voted for presidential nominee. Keep in mind that I deliberately avoided promoting Ron Paul. I wanted voters to choose our delegates based on the issues and not reject them for being associated with the House’s “crazy uncle”.

RON PAUL.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .     5    9.61
JOHN MCCAIN.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .    39   75.00
MIKE HUCKABEE .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .     6   11.54
WRITE-IN.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .     2    3.85

For comparison, here are the unofficial results for all of Allegheny County.

RON PAUL.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  9,264   15.73
JOHN MCCAIN.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . 42,379   71.97
MIKE HUCKABEE .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  5,128    8.71
WRITE-IN.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  2,113    3.59

A good summary of what the PA presidential preference vote means can be found in a Nation article entitled, “McCain Loses 27% of Pennsylvania Vote“. The following is the breakdown of how my precinct voted for GOP convention delegates.

JOHN S. AGATSTON .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .     12   10.90
JAMES MCCOLLUM.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .     16   14.54
ROBERT TAMBURO.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .     22   20.00
ELLEN MELROSE .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .     13   15.65
ANDREW MAUL.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .     18   16.36
MICHELLE D. AGATSTON.  .  .  .  .  .  .     13   15.65
CRYSTAL M. JONES .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .     16   14.54
WRITE-IN.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .     00   00.00

Our delegates averaged 18.67 votes and the others averaged 13.5. For comparison, here are the unofficial results for all of Allegheny County.

JOHN S. AGATSTON .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  4,041   13.07
JAMES MCCOLLUM.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  5,776   18.69
ROBERT TAMBURO.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  4,540   14.69
ELLEN MELROSE .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  4,837   15.65
ANDREW MAUL.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  3,207   10.38
MICHELLE D. AGATSTON.  .  .  .  .  .  .  4,370   14.14
CRYSTAL M. JONES .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  3,875   12.54
WRITE-IN.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .    262   00.85

Our delegates averaged 3874 votes versus 4756 for the others. If my sample size were not so small, I ought to be excited that our delegates did better at my precinct in comparison to the whole District 14 population. :)

Unfortunately, only Robert will be going to the national convention. :( He barely squeaked into the third delegate slot. I wish our other two delegates could go, but I’m pleased that at least one will. I look forward to hearing about his experiences at the national convention. :)

Yesterday was a long, tiring day that didn’t end until I left at 8:30 with vote tallies, a sun-burned face, and a headache. Having no chair, I had to stand all day, which made me sore all over, but especially my feet. The discussions I had with Hillary supporters gave me a lot of food for thought (Don’t worry; I still don’t like her.), but I’m not sure how productive the whole exercise was. I’m hoping to work a precinct in November for Bob Barr (assuming I still support him then). At the presidential election, we’ll be battling for the hearts and minds of all Americans, not just Republicans. What we do at the polls could have a big impact.

Addendum: Here’s another Pittsburgh Paulite’s comments about the primary results.

Post a Comment

Your email is never published nor shared. Required fields are marked *