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Monday, August 15, 2022
ArlingtonDemocrats head into neighborhoods to spread the word

Democrats head into neighborhoods to spread the word

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It won’t just be cicadas cheerfully flitting their way through local neighborhoods in coming weeks. Volunteers with the Arlington County Democratic Committee will be out, too.

The party is planning a significant “lit-drop” operation to inform members of the public about the upcoming School Board caucus in May and state primary in June, with hopes of boosting turnout.

The upcoming elections represent “the first opportunity folks will have to vote this year,” party chair Jill Caiazzo said.

The materials will be informational, as the party does not take positions supporting candidates during intra-Democratic battles. (Political campaigns themselves, however, may also send volunteers out and about, delivering targeted materials to get supporters out to the polls.)

The volunteer effort will be of the no-contact variety, due to public-health concerns. Materials will consist of “sticky-notes” that can be placed on, and easily removed from, front doors.

“Arlington Democrats are on the job,” said Carol Fontein, who heads the party’s precinct-operations efforts.

Fontein noted that the transient nature of the community, coupled with elections that occur every year in Arlington, keep the party on its toes.
“Each year, we have to register tons of new voters,” she said.

In making a recruiting pitch, Caiazzo said volunteers could use the neighborhood walkabouts to shake off the winter doldrums and begin to enjoy the nicer springtime weather.

“It’s also fun and good exercise,” she said.

In a separate effort, county Democrats are ramping up efforts to get their materials into high-rise apartments and condominiums, where access sometimes can be restricted.

But, Fontein said, the party would follow all rules laid down by building management during the initiative.

“We don’t want to get arrested, we don’t want to make residents mad,” she said.

The May School Board caucus features two candidates vying for the seat of Monique O’Grady, who is not seeking re-election. The June 8 primary includes races for governor, lieutenant governor, attorney general, County Board and – in the 45th, 47th and 49th districts – the House of Delegates.

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