by Oliver Keene
In my last article, I told you about what my Democratic Committee in Tazewell County, Virginia was doing in the reddest and most rural part of the state, Virginia’s Appalachian Coalfields. In this article, I want to give you all an update on how it is going and give a huge shout out to my volunteers!
Our group of volunteers is small, but is almost all women. They are women of all ages, from all kinds of different backgrounds — former teachers, librarians and former librarians, etc. They have all come together to “save the world.” These ladies have pulled double and triple time this election cycle, doing it all — from knocking on hundreds of doors largely alone by themselves (one lady goes out every possible day and knocks on as many doors as she possibly can and she has already hit more than 300 doors herself!), to making those 1,800 phone calls, to hand writing these 1,600 letters we are sending out at meetings and at home on their own time.
These ladies have sacrificed so much of their own personal time and treasure for our party and they really are making a difference. We are running into friends and neighbors who have gotten our letters in the mall and at events and one told me “Hey thank you so much for that letter! I really appreciated that someone had took the time to actually hand write that and I had not really planned to vote in this election before but I got an absentee ballot after I read your letter!” and then there are the former party activist who have drifted away from being active in the local party for various reasons.. I ran into one at the local grocery store who said “I really appreciated your letter! I am going to start coming back to the meetings and get involved again because you were right our country needs us!”
This is the kind of work we HAVE to do if we are EVER going to win back not only Appalachia, but rural voters everywhere! Our letter-writing campaign has been so successful, it is starting to inspire others! Our wonderful neighbors in Bland County, Virginia just last night joined in on the letter-writing fun and did over 200 letters in one night! I highly encourage you to go drop them a donation if you can they just restarted this committee after having no Democratic Committee in Bland County for many years! Here is their link : l.facebook.com/… ) They are working really hard and doing a great job!
Slowly, precinct by precinct, we are gaining ground, and I have no doubt that this November you are going to be seeing a whole lot more blue on the map coming from Appalachia! To our knowledge, the other team is literally nothing down here. They have gone and put out a handful of signs and knocked on a handful of doors, but overwhelmingly what we are hearing and seeing on the ground is that no one has contacted these voters besides US! The voters here want to talk; they really are smart, intelligent people who have serious questions about policy and how certain policies will affect them and their daily lives. We are taking the time to talk to every one of them we possibly can.
Because that is what we are supposed to do; we are supposed to be the voice of the people. Overwhelmingly, what we are seeing is the people here really need good Democrats in office. Everything from school funding to just basic needs, the United Way recently found that in Southwest Virginia more than half of the people here struggle with getting just basic needs.. and most of our Coalfields counties struggle with poverty rates well above 20%. That’s why we need good Democrats in office here NOW.
Next year we are going to have to do double what we are doing now and we need your help to do that. You can help us right now by donating to The Tazewell County Democrats :l.facebook.com/… ) or the Bland County Democrats : l.facebook.com/… ) We make a little go a really really long way! Thank you so much for your time and your support lets keep Virginia Blue!