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Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Bad (Yard) Signs

posted by on September 16 at 11:20 AM

I’ve seen one McCain yard sign in Seattle. There are others, no doubt, but I get around and as Obama struggles to close the gap in the polls I take some small comfort in the fact that there’s just one McCain sign—in the U-District, of all places—along my regular bike route.

I cross myself and spit every time I ride past it. Can’t be too careful.

There are, of course, Obama signs everywhere you go in Seattle. But as I counted the Obama yard signs on my ride home last night, it suddenly occurred to me that… gee… I haven’t seen a single Gregoire yard sign anywhere in Seattle. Not a one. There are probably some out there somewhere, just as there are more McCain yard signs out there somewhere, but… still. Christine Gregoire—a woman, pro-choice, an early endorser of Obama, and just as pro-gay as Obama—is running for reelection against an anti-choice, pro-business, anti-gay piece of shit and it seems that precious few liberals in Seattle are excited enough about reelecting Gregoire (or re-defeating Rossi) to stick one of her yard signs on their lawns. This is bad news for Gregoire, who needs to rack up huge numbers in Seattle and King County if she hopes to defeat Rossi. (See a Gregoire yard sign in Seattle? Please take a picture, note the location, and send it to me.)

That was running through my head this morning on my way to work when I spotted… a Dino Rossi sign. On Capitol Butt Fucking Hill. Okay, it wasn’t a sign. It was a bumper sticker, and it was on a truck, and God knows where that truck is normally parked. Not, I hope, in my neighborhood. But it still struck me as a bad omen.

Crossed self, spat, rode on.

RSS icon Comments


There's a Gregoire sign on my way home, near the zoo.

Posted by Fnarf | September 16, 2008 11:23 AM

Obama's campaign has been mailing and emailing me asking for money and offering bumperstickers and t-shirts and whatnot for a...year? I haven't heard shit from the Gregoire campaign in that time.

Posted by Tiktok | September 16, 2008 11:25 AM

Any idea of what you'd see if your bike route home included, say, Wenatchee?

Posted by Banna | September 16, 2008 11:25 AM

There are some Gregoire signs up on Queen Anne where I live. Mine will be joining them when I get it in the mail.

Posted by Lobot | September 16, 2008 11:26 AM

The Gregoire campaign has a bunch of new yard signs in. Anyone who wants them can pick them up at the Coordinated Campaign office, 1310 Mercer St, just west of Eastlake, nice and close to Capitol Hill.

What are you waiting for, Dan? If you think it's such a problem, well, I just solved it for you.

Posted by ivan | September 16, 2008 11:26 AM

I'm not suggesting that the yard signs don't exist, Ivan, only that folks aren't excited enough about the race to go get one and put it on the lawns. Simply directing me to a pile of unclaimed Gregoire yard signs doesn't solve the gov's problem here.

Posted by Dan Savage | September 16, 2008 11:30 AM

Send a pic, Fnarf.

Posted by Dan Savage | September 16, 2008 11:32 AM

Just like the last election, Gregoire isn't reaching out to her base or trying to excite her base. She is totally under-utilizing her human resources.

It is really sad. This shouldn't be close, but she doesn't campaign worth shit.

I had to join others to drive around all day and into the night verifying signatures of voters to get her over the top in the last election. No small feat for us to drag her ass over the hump. I don't think she learned the lesson of it, I really don't.

Posted by cracked | September 16, 2008 11:34 AM

Hi Dan - I live near Cap Hill, but its worth pointing out that I see more Gregoire signs in downtown Bellevue where I work than I do Rossi signs. Thats right - dreadful, republicanish downtown Bellevue - the only place that I have seen a McCain sign! So, maybe we shouldn't panic. Yet.

Posted by BenJ | September 16, 2008 11:37 AM

Ivan: you just said it all about the Gregoire campaign style "What are you waiting for, Dan? If you think it's such a problem, well, I just solved it for you."

That is how their campaign goes about things, like it is a great privilege for the camptive demographic to do the foot work. Instead of "Please come help - we can do great things together."

Posted by cracked | September 16, 2008 11:37 AM

I was trying to find a Gregoire bumper sticker online, went to her website, and found nothing. The only ones I could find by Googling were for sale on eBay or CafePress. Any idea where I could pick one up?

Posted by benjr | September 16, 2008 11:40 AM

What 2 said, and what 8 said. Is she campaigning at all? What is she doing? I've gotten e-mails from the DNC, John Burbank, Obama, the 36th district dems . . . but nothing from Gregoire.

Is she just assuming so many people will go out to vote for Obama that she'll be fine? Ridiculous.

Posted by Levislade | September 16, 2008 11:42 AM

If she loses this by under-campaigning she will prove herself to be one of the lousiest politicians ever. She had a huge majority in the polls and she is letting it slip away.

Posted by inkweary | September 16, 2008 11:43 AM

guys, daniel is right, there are hardly any chris g signs anywhere in our city. rossi signs are ALL over the place once you get out of seattle. his ads were on during monday night football. i only saw 2 gregoire spots.

time to start fighting. chris g is in trouble.

Posted by SeMe | September 16, 2008 11:48 AM

John Burbank knocked on my door the other day to try and get my vote. Seriously.

Posted by Tiktok | September 16, 2008 11:50 AM

Rossi's TV ads are pretty good too. I like how he's actually there, just talking to you, makes him seem like a real person and a nice guy. c.f. having a beer with Bush.

Gregorie's just has a voiceover. For all we know she's pulling a Kim Jong-il.

Posted by Anon | September 16, 2008 11:51 AM

You can request a yard sign from her website.

I, too, have noticed a distinct lack of activity from the campaign, apart from the 'kickoff' email I received (a couple of times on two different days).

I am trying not to let the disorganization and lack of energy from the campaign deter me from contributing.

Please help -- we can do great things together.

Posted by proccers | September 16, 2008 11:53 AM

Tons of Gregoire signs in North Kirkland/Juanita; and they've been up for months

Posted by Just Sayin' | September 16, 2008 11:54 AM

Of COURSE Dems aren't excited about Gregoire; they want her to win, but the Dems in Olympia have spent the last two years capitulating to Tim Eyman and the Republicans in spite of holding a super-majority.

When the supermajority's primary interest is maintaining the supermajority, it makes you wonder what politics is for.

Posted by Martin H. Duke | September 16, 2008 11:54 AM

i want to like gregoire, since i loathe rossi, but i'm none too pleased with her sticky hand in the tribal casino money-filled cookie jar. banning internet gambling was one of her more stupid and obvious moves.

can't we vote third party for governor?


Posted by diggum | September 16, 2008 11:57 AM

Gregoire's non-campaign is fucking ridiculous. When she loses, and she will lose, there will be little doubt why she lost. Who ever is half-assing her campaign needs to step down so that someone with the nutsack to do the job, can do the job.

Get out there and fight for your win, put forth some effort dammit, because if this campaign doesn't step up its game right-fucking-now, today, it's over.

Posted by chaosbound | September 16, 2008 12:00 PM

@21 - The thing is, it's the exact same reason she barely won in the first place. Have they not put that shit together?

Posted by Levislade | September 16, 2008 12:07 PM

I think she has done very little for Seattle besides CAMPAIGNING to rebuild that awful viaduct. Other than that what has she done? I am voting Obama-Rossi.

Posted by TheTruthHurts | September 16, 2008 12:20 PM

There is a Gregoire sign on 65th and 32nd Ave NE right behind the Sunflour Cafe. Although it IS offset by a Rossi sign two doors down......

We better face it, Christine assumes she will win simply because of the D behind her name. She is in for a shock on Election Day.

Posted by Cato the Younger Younger | September 16, 2008 12:22 PM

Sort of off-topic, but yesterday I saw a car parked in front of Seattle Centeral sporting a bumper sticker that said, "Democrats for McCain." I kind of wanted to firebomb it, but didn't have anything handy to do so at the time.

Posted by bookworm | September 16, 2008 12:22 PM

@14--Agreed, I went on a trip to Winthrop three weeks ago and once we cleared King County the route was thick with Rossi signs. I don't think I've seen a commercial for her since the Democratic Convention.

Posted by madamecrow | September 16, 2008 12:26 PM

I've had 4 Obama signs taken from my yard since he started running in the primaries. I'm down to my last one that I'll be putting out when I get home from work today since the 4th left the yard last night. Maybe I'll order more and just keep putting 'em up.

Posted by Jersey | September 16, 2008 12:26 PM

Dan @ 6:

Concluding that people won't vote for Gregoire based on YOU not having seen yard signs in a small area is typical of the shallowness and superficiality of your political "coverage."

You're full of shit, Dan, and have been for years now, when you get out of your element. YARD SIGNS MEAN DICK, do you hear me?

If you're for Obama and want positive change in this country, remember that the states are the proving grounds for democracy. We can accomplish things in the states before they can happen at the federal level.

What positive change does anybody think Dino Rossi would bring to Washington that would support Obama's program? The answer is none -- not jack shit.

Gregoire brings it. There is NO OTHER CHOICE! I don't give a flying fuck in a rolling donut how many yard signs Dan saw today.

Posted by ivan | September 16, 2008 12:40 PM

@27, I've had one swiped. I kinda think it was someone who wanted it for their own yard, which is cool, since I have two up and they only took one. A McCain supporter would surely have taken them both, right?

Posted by Fnarf | September 16, 2008 12:44 PM

@21 amen. Everyday we see 'nice guy' Rossi ads where he promises to be bi-partisan and protect the vulnerable. Any smart person knows this is bullshit, as evidenced by his record in the legislature. Then we see hit-piece ads from BIAW that falsely accuse Gregoire of being the Indian tribes' bitch.

All I see from Gregoire are the same "I'll protect your children" milquetoast ads that ran during the primary campaign.

The vacation's over, damn it. Get to work.

Posted by Joe M | September 16, 2008 12:45 PM

Well, Ivan, a few years ago -- a dozen or more -- I predicted that Ellen Crasswell would win the GOP nomination for governor based just on the numbers of her yard signs outside of Seattle.

And I'm for Gregoire, you moron. I'm not attacking Gregoire here. I'm merely concerned about a distinct lack of enthusiasm for her candidacy in the liberal parts of the state that she must win, and win big, to get a second term. And, yes, that lack of enthusiasm can be measured in yard signs.

Yard signs matter. If they didn't, campaigns wouldn't waste money on 'em.

Posted by Dan Savage | September 16, 2008 12:46 PM

But thank you for playing Slog.

Posted by Dan Savage | September 16, 2008 12:50 PM

Look, I'm voting for Gregoire, of course. But please don't ask me to like it, or get so enthused that I'll put up a yard sign. It's a not-Rossi vote.

Posted by tsm | September 16, 2008 12:58 PM

I think there's a Gregoire sign in one of the windows in my apartment building. Next time I leave, I'll bring a camera for posterity.

Posted by Jessica | September 16, 2008 1:12 PM


I live near you and I have one. Twice I requested a yard sign through her web site and I have not heard from them. I finally grabbed one from her booth at the Capital Hill Block party and walked home with it. In my opinion, her campaigns response to my requests is part of why she is in a close race against a guy that is barely qualified to be a greeter at Walmart.

Posted by bryan | September 16, 2008 1:31 PM

diggum said:

i want to like gregoire, since i loathe rossi, but i'm none too pleased with her sticky hand in the tribal casino money-filled cookie jar. banning internet gambling was one of her more stupid and obvious moves.

Didn't slog itself just say that the accusations about Gregoire and gambling money were false?

Posted by leek | September 16, 2008 1:34 PM

I tried to get a yard sign through her website, and never got one, and worse, they never followed up with me in any way.

the 36th district Democrats didn't even HAVE any Gregoire stuff at the Ballard Seafood days booth!

So yeah, bad (lack of) signs all around.

Posted by JK | September 16, 2008 1:47 PM

There are tons of Gregoire signs in Olympia. Go figure.

Posted by sepiolida | September 16, 2008 1:58 PM

Did anyone notice that dude wearing the "Proud Democrat" t-shirt sitting first-row behind Fox TV sideline goofball Tony Siragusa at Qwest Field on Sunday?

Posted by DOUG. | September 16, 2008 2:02 PM

Um, isn't internet gambling banned on the federal level, not the state?

Posted by Fnarf | September 16, 2008 2:05 PM

Ivan @28

If Gregoire "brings it" as you say she does, and I'm not saying she doesn't, then don't you think her campaign aught to start fighting back against Dino?

Maybe yard signs don't do dick, maybe they do. I can tell you, that when I see a sign, sticker, or otherwise in support of my candidate, I think to myself "fuck yeah, other people get it, and I'm backing a winner." People don't like to back a loser, so if Gregoire wants to win, then she aught to convey the message that she is fighting to win, and she really aught to make it possible for her supporters to PUBLICLY SUPPORT HER. That means that the people who want yard signs should have them.

Posted by chaosbound | September 16, 2008 2:12 PM

I've been off line a while but I heard he was quarreling I'd been wrong in saying WA will vote like MN or vice versa or something -- and that folks should go volunteer in other states.

Not biggies. I expect to be wrong some of the time -- who doesn't? -- so even if those statements were wrong who cares?
I think WA did vote like MN and I think it makes more sense for an ardent OBama volunteer living on say, Capitol Hill, to get on a plane and go to Cincinatti Ohio and volunteer for a week than to run around the 43d district looking to raise Obama's percentage from 80% to 81%.
It certainly makes sense for the MA folks to go to NH, as the OBama campaign is doing, and it totally makes sense for the LA CA folks to go to Las Vegas and help. I hope the Obama ground game is just that good.

The main points still are Obama has flaws and limitatoins and isn't So Vastly More Electable, all fo which has come true, as we see in the recent polls and the narrowing of the eletoral map; and, just as said earlier, he needs to connect with the swing voters in the rust belt states-- still hasn't closed that deal yet, independents are swinging away from him; and to do this he needs a more sharply honed economic message carried by all surrogates including Clintons, Biden etc.
He sort of got a bit to it in his latest ads but just complaining vaguely that McCain = Bush or McCain is "the same" is vague and wonky and isn't exactly a sharp economic message that speaks to swing voters.

Anyway whoever took my Obama sign put it back. I went down and paid $24 for three signs and gave one away and I want the other one to go to another friend.

I hope it wasn't that Pee Cee mini me who took my yard sign. If it was you, pee cee, put it back.

PS- complete economic meltdown of the world capitalist system perhaps can help Obama focus on the economy more??

As said earlier, ITE,S.
Oddly, the responsive McCain sound bite focusing on greed and corruption was better than Obama's which was very wonky -- all about deregulators. Why isn't Obama out there saying the culprit is greed and corruption? That greed and corruption is the GOP way? That McCain is full of greed and corruption, too, because his donors and lobbyist pals are? And look at his VP pick, she was supporting Ted Stevens, MR. greed and corruption? And then tie this to what it means, economically, to you, Mr. and Ms. Swing Voter.

I realize that some, like pee cee, are driven crazy by this kind of bat shit crazy advice that candidates should you know, speak to voters in terms meaningful to those very voters. Yes, this is a shameful, awful vile view of the world, I know. But -- isn't it true??

Unity y'awl

Posted by PC | September 16, 2008 2:35 PM

Dan @ 31:

Look, I agree with you that this campaign needs to get more aggressive. But let's not start rewriting history here.

Craswell didn't win the primary for Governor because you saw more yard signs. "You predicted." That's a lot of crap. She won the Republican primary because tens of thousands of Democrats, certainly including me, crossed over and voted for her AS AN ORGANIZED EFFORT in that bullshit "blanket primary" we used to have.

We wanted a Bible-thumping wingnut to represent the Republican Party so that Locke could crush her, and that's exactly what happened. That's why the Republicans hated the blanket primary and sued to get rid of it.

Posted by ivan | September 16, 2008 2:46 PM

It was also a six- or nine-way race in the GOP primary that year, Ivan, if I remember correctly. (Sorry about the ancient history, other Sloggers.) And I crossed over and voted for Ellen too. But I don't think there were enough of us out there to give Ellen the edge. The moderate GOP vote -- cough, cough -- was split, and Ellen scooped up all the crazies, religious nuts, and craziers, a.k.a. the "base."

And when I wrote, at the time, that Ellen was going to win based, in part, on the visual evidence of her support out in the boonies, people said I was wrong, and that yard signs and signs along highways DID NOT MEAN DICK. But they did mean at least dick then, and they mean at least dick now.

But, yeah, "we" wanted a Bible-thumping wingnut to represent the Republican Party so that our crushingly dull candidate (Locke) could crush her. But guess what? Way more of "them" wanted a Bible-thumping wingnut to represent the Republican Party. And it was their votes that put her over the top, not "ours."

Posted by Dan Savage | September 16, 2008 3:09 PM

Yard signs really do mean dick in the world of campaigns (and heaven knows I've put literally thousands of them out - as they make your supporters happy - and not having them out will make your supporters very unhappy indeed - but they really don't move undecided voters).

It's Gregoire's piss-poor TV ads that have me worried...

Posted by Mr. X | September 16, 2008 3:18 PM

is chris counting on an obama cabinet position?

i really dont understand such a lame campaign. really, i was in pasco last week and you would think dino won already. whatcom is also filled with his signs. so where is she concentrating her efforts?

we can not let rossi win the governor's mansion, specially with our spineless frank chop led super majority.

Posted by SeMe | September 16, 2008 4:28 PM

I was in Issaquah over the weekend -- just 20 minutes from Cap Hill -- and I must have seen 100 Rossi signs, and not one CG one. (Otoh, I did see more Darcy Burner signs than I expected...)

Posted by sherrold | September 16, 2008 6:12 PM

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