After you vote today, you can still do more


Every little bit helps

In our Obama campaign office in downtown Ann Arbor, we have the fairly typical crew of folks. There’s me, the Canvass Captain, and my Deputy Canvass Captain Jennifer who does as much or more than I do.

We have Kate who somehow manages to keep all of our canvass packets and canvassers organized so that she can report the numbers and so we can make sure everyone gets back safely.

There’s Randy, our Phonebank Captain, who is assisted by Kathy and keeps our steady flow of phonebankers trained and busy, and who manages to stay sane and calm when the predictive dialers are fussy. Thankfully, he’s also an expert in laser printer surgery.

We have Jeanette who is our gatekeeper at the front desk, making sure nobody gets by without being welcomed and then asked if they are volunteering for canvassing or phonebanking.

There’s Etta, our intrepid Comfort Captain, who keeps the coffee fresh and all of our volunteer staff fed along with our volunteers.

And then, of course, we have Alaina, our Staging Location Director. Alaina is doing the work of a staff person and gets paid only in smiles, headaches and the deep satisfaction that she has made a huge contribution to something she believes in strongly. She keeps us all focused and calm and determined and she does it with a big smile. All the time.

This is the normal contingent of volunteers that you’ll see at pretty much any Obama Get Out The Vote (GOTV) Staging Location across the country today. But our office has one more person that not every location is blessed to have.

We have Bette.

Bette is in her 70s, an African American woman who grew up in Washington, D.C. She wasn’t involved in the 2008 election but, this year, she comes down to the office every day during GOTV. Sometimes she brings us some snacks or other food. Sometimes she does small jobs around the office like highlighting our shift times on the volunteer sign-up sheets.

And sometimes Bette just sits quietly in chair near the middle of the room, out of the way but clearly present, doing “nothing”.

But Bette isn’t doing “nothing”. Bette is praying. Bette comes to our office every day of GOTV and prays for us. She prays that our volunteers are successful and safe. She prays that things go smoothly. She prays that we prevail and reelect Barack Obama.

Bette is our self-appointed Prayer Captain.

Got some extra time today after you vote? Then DO SOMETHING! Don’t know what to do? Go to and we’ll get you started. Every little bit helps.

Just ask Bette.

P.S. If you need to confirm WHERE you’re voting (and you should), click HERE.