On Saturday, I went precinct-walking for Kriss Worthington, a Berkeley city councilperson now running for the California State Assembly. I went door to door around town, talking to neighbors about Kriss and his campaign.
Here’s what I learned:
- Very few people want to talk about political candidacies on a Saturday afternoon.
- Of those that do, most don’t follow the state assembly race.
- Local politics matter; one man told me he’d never vote for Kriss, because of his position on a local park issue.
- Voters are interested in more than data. I found myself deviating from the suggested talk points on issues and endorsements, and talking about why Kriss made an impact on me and why I was out walking for him. I felt like I swayed several likely voters during a couple of long conversations.
- It felt really good to know I wasn’t alone, as I met several other intended Kriss voters.
It was my first time precinct-walking, and I was paired up with a sixtysomething white woman. As the day went on, we realized we shared something more than our support for the same candidate — a common address. It turned out that she used to live in our house, renting the condo right underneath ours for several years through the 1960s; she cared for several of the trees still in our backyard. We enjoyed catching each other up on the building and the neighborhood, and made plans to meet up again. Small world.