This is the third week in a row John Persinger has presented a plan to the public, gathering local and even some national media attention. But, how does that impact a voter’s decision?
Raychel Vendetti asked voters and political experts today about the role the media plays in campaigning. So far this election season, the Erie Mayoral Candidates seem to be taking different pathways to spread their message, but is one way more effective than the other?
Republican Mayoral Candidate John Persinger shows up on local TV and a New York Post editorial. Democratic Candidate Joe Schember gets a heavy endorsement in Governor Tom Wolf and is doing a lot of behind the scenes door-to-door campaigning.
Mercyhurst Chair of Political Science, Joe Morris, PhD, says, “you can’t win an election without an excellent ground game, especially in this upcoming election”. He says while grassroots campaigning is necessary, it’s not all that is needed to win. “Often, what matters is how organized they are and how well they are able to get the vote. To the extent that media attention helps them get the vote out can be really important”.
Voters we caught up with explained what they want from a candidate. Joe Rearick says, “If they are clear on what they are doing, and what their plans are… if they are just out there saying, ‘vote for me,’ that doesn’t really sway me”.
While Bill Phillips prefers the “quieter set… the grassroots, show us what they stand for”.
Whether it’s grassroots campaigning or high profile, some, like Brenda Hayes, still like to do their own research by “reading about them and usually figuring out what they are about is the way I would rather see the information”. But, only time will tell which technique will be more successful.
Morris tells us he sees that Persinger “is certainly doing the best he can… I don’t have anything to say about Schember’s campaign because what is there to say about it? I don’t know anything about his campaign”.
He says mayoral races typically see low voter turnout, but it’s an interesting time considering the 2016 presidential election. Morris says the rules that Democrats vote Democrat and Republicans vote Republican may not apply any longer. So, staying in the public eye can be beneficial for these candidates.