The straw poll we took after the debate was widely reported and one campaign has used the results as well as the “gotcha moment” on their campaign website. The straw poll results showed a starkly different result from our online poll – the difference between hearing generally about the candidates and watching them up close.
The day before the debate, two of the candidates also released new senior friendly policies: one candidate promised to freeze property taxes for seniors with less than $50, 000 and another promised to institute free transit services for seniors between 10am and 2pm. Would this have happened if we had not organized to let them know what we wanted? Most likely not! CARP polled the audience before and after the debate to determine which candidate performed best with the audience and many people changed their votes: candidates who told heart warming tales about how much they loved older people without actually outlining specifically how their platform addressed their needs did not fare well.
We want more than words: we want action! That means we, as voters, have to do more than complain too: we have to be ready with our questions and we have to make the issues we care about a condition of our vote.