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View Full Version : Initiative/referendum - let's run a non-destructive test


LOW2000
02-23-2009, 9:57 PM
I moved this post out of the initiatives thread to its own thread here - please keep reading, it isn't really a necropost!

// Librarian

We tried to get enough signatures 2 years ago to get a "2nd amendment" added to our state constitution, we failed by a LOT of signatures. Unless you have paid signature gatherers, you don't have a snowballs chance of even getting on the ballot, let alone getting the exposure to get people to vote in favor.

jdberger
08-03-2010, 8:47 AM
We tried to get enough signatures 2 years ago to get a "2nd amendment" added to our state constitution, we failed by a LOT of signatures. Unless you have paid signature gatherers, you don't have a snowballs chance of even getting on the ballot, let alone getting the exposure to get people to vote in favor.

I was one of the signature gatherers. It was quite a chore to get people to just sign the petitions.

But I did get the opportunity to meet some great Calgunners....and I got to be at the famous San Jose show when the OLL movement was born.

BretByron
02-26-2013, 11:33 AM
Wasn't Prop 215 a volunteer-run initiative?

Librarian
02-26-2013, 12:04 PM
Wasn't Prop 215 a volunteer-run initiative?
Proposition 215, or the Compassionate Use Act of 1996

Started that way, but As the deadline approached and it was becoming clear the unpaid signature gatherers were not on pace to qualify, a group of philanthropists, including George Soros, Peter Lewis, and George Zimmer, stepped in to pay for professional petition circulators through the Santa Monica, CA based political consulting firm of Zimmerman & Markman.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/California_Proposition_215_%281996%29 and http://articles.latimes.com/1996-11-02/news/mn-60512_1_medical-marijuana-measure

What surprises me is the dollar amount stated: 2 million.Of the $2 million raised to qualify and campaign for the measure, three-quarters has come from six wealthy businessmen. Only one of them lives in California.

Gunlawyer
02-26-2013, 7:00 PM
If you did have the money and researched the issue before qualifying to determine the odds ( i.e. internal poll questions thoroughly vetted on how to word it and put it on ballot) then it maybe a good idea. I know one person would try to chip in some money for it if asked. See link below. If Richards goes south this might be a good option next.
http://www.frontsight.com/CACCW/

Tiberius
02-26-2013, 7:11 PM
I'm going to disagree, a little bit. Gun owners and 2A supporters are a bit more cohesive than the average grass-roots group. The primary tool would be gun stores, shooting clubs and ranges, and the like. If you can get a group of those behind you, and they commit to getting their regulars and members to help out, maybe it could work. I haven't done the math, but you need a number of signatures based on the number of voters in the last election - some percentage.

The reality, which would be amazing to most Californians, is that Miami, Dallas,Atlanta, Jacksonville, and many many other cities are "shall issue" without the blood in the streets that was supposed to happen.

If shall-issue CCW was tied to a revenue-raising deal "for the children," I think it could work. Something like the CCW costs $100, and a lot of that goes to a school fund. Then, its a new optional tax for those who want to help the children, and not a way for gun-wielding thugs to carry more guns.

T

G60
02-26-2013, 7:14 PM
Also, we'd lose:
http://www.sfgate.com/news/article/Californians-favor-tighter-gun-controls-4308154.php

todd2968
02-26-2013, 7:22 PM
Maybe it can be spun as they do call it the child protection act and........
Armed guards must be provided at all public schools and somewhere in the fine print faculty ccw's she be a replacement and even farther down the wording
This state shall not deny ccw's to anyone that qualifies to own a firearm
For the protection of the children.

They do this all the time

Librarian
02-26-2013, 8:35 PM
I'm going to disagree, a little bit. Gun owners and 2A supporters are a bit more cohesive than the average grass-roots group. The primary tool would be gun stores, shooting clubs and ranges, and the like. If you can get a group of those behind you, and they commit to getting their regulars and members to help out, maybe it could work. I haven't done the math, but you need a number of signatures based on the number of voters in the last election - some percentage.

The reality, which would be amazing to most Californians, is that Miami, Dallas,Atlanta, Jacksonville, and many many other cities are "shall issue" without the blood in the streets that was supposed to happen.

If shall-issue CCW was tied to a revenue-raising deal "for the children," I think it could work. Something like the CCW costs $100, and a lot of that goes to a school fund. Then, its a new optional tax for those who want to help the children, and not a way for gun-wielding thugs to carry more guns.

T

I'm going to disagree with that, a lot.

We already have the evidence that many gun owners are unwilling even to register to vote; 'registered voter' is a requirement to validate a signature.

The number of signatures needed is dependent on the votes cast in a prior election - check with the Secretary of State's website, link in the first post.

Out of state information probably would indeed amaze many Californians. Mostly, they would be amazed that anything exists outside of California and New York. Californians are invincibly convinced They Are Different and the experience of other states Could Not Possibly Apply Here.

CA's LTC fees are already at $100 for the issuing agency (that's a maximum, and also apparently widely seen as a minimum) and $44 to the State PLUS prints and background check at $76.

Imagine the headline on the SF Chronicle story "Proposition to allow more concealed weapons in public criticized by police chiefs". Every day, for free.

pHredd9mm
02-27-2013, 7:14 AM
As long as we talk about "gun rights" or "2A" rights we will lose the battle of politics in this left leaning state of CA.

It is NOT about gun rights or 2A rights, IT IS ABOUT CIVIL RIGHTS!

About the only chance of getting CA sheeple to vote for a CA constitutional amendment to add the 2A to the CA constitution is to fool the sheeples by coming up with a CA constitutional amendment to align our constitution with the U.S. constitution, word for word with the U.S. Bill of Rights.

Push for Civil Rights. The sheeples can get behind them. :oji:

mrrabbit
02-27-2013, 7:36 AM
As long as we talk about "gun rights" or "2A" rights we will lose the battle of politics in this left leaning state of CA.

It is NOT about gun rights or 2A rights, IT IS ABOUT CIVIL RIGHTS!

About the only chance of getting CA sheeple to vote for a CA constitutional amendment to add the 2A to the CA constitution is to fool the sheeples by coming up with a CA constitutional amendment to align our constitution with the U.S. constitution, word for word with the U.S. Bill of Rights.

Push for Civil Rights. The sheeples can get behind them. :oji:

Now that's a good strategy....

It's a Dem strategy actually - and it would work. He He! The pressure would be on:

1. Vote UP! California supports civil rights, including the one they don't like.

2. Vote DOWN! Well now the argument can be made by hard core radical politicians that California can go ahead and suspend privacy, property rights, right to a speedy jury trial, freedom of the press...

That would create a storm...

I too am alarmed at the defeatism here on Calguns when it comes to the Referendum or Initiative process:

1. Put the petitions in gun stores, sporting goods stores, at gun ranges, at Boy Scout meetings, etc. Don't chase people down out in public - find 'em where they're at. Profile location-wise, target.

That cuts down the costs as well...

Liberals for example profile - targeting Universities and Community Colleges.


2. Do the same for voter registration forms.


The idea once again is to flip the situation entirely around - us on the offensive - they on the defensive.

Right now we are always in reactionary mode - which is why they are able to chisel away piece by piece.

=8-)

Gunlawyer
02-27-2013, 7:54 AM
If Richards and Peruta fail at the 9th how many signatures do you pledge to get CCW shall issue in California?

http://www.frontsight.com/CACCW/signaturepledge.asp

Librarian
02-27-2013, 6:59 PM
I included the first two posts, because that's the expectation I'm setting for the experiment.

A few people continue to believe the Initiatives (http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?t=156804) thread is too pessimistic.

Let's find out.

Let's prepare a 'spiel' to be used at gatherings of probable gun owners - gun stores, ranges, political rallies, casual gatherings, whatever.

Let's suppose that some of the awful laws currently proposed get to the Governor and become law. Wouldn't it be good to have a statewide up-or-down vote on those laws?

That's what a REFERENDUM is - see SOS (http://www.sos.ca.gov/elections/ballot-measures/referenda.htm). To get one on the ballot The petitions must be signed by registered voters in an amount equal to 5% of the votes cast for all candidates for Governor at the last gubernatorial election. The total number of signatures required is 504,760.

Since only registered voters can be counted on the petitions, the goal - that will actually be useful, this is not wasted effort - is to get more gun owners or civil right advocates registered to vote, so when/if a referendum petition comes out, the person would be a valid signature.

I propose that folks get people at those locations to register.

Secretary of State says Pick Up a Voter Registration Application

You can also pick up a paper voter registration application at your county elections office, library, Department of Motor Vehicles offices, or U.S. post office. It is important that your voter registration application be filled out completely and be postmarked or hand-delivered to your county elections office at least 15 days before the election.so participants in this test need to go to their local place and get a bunch of paper registration forms.

You will need
* permission from the owner/manager of the place
* a table
* a chair for you
* a clipboard or two
* a couple of pens
* the 'spiel'

Here's a preliminary procedure

Assume that every person you approach will tell you the truth.

1) approach a person and ask if he/she is registered to vote.
1A If Yes, ask which county, and record that

2) if No, explain
* awful gun laws are coming
* we want a chance to have the people vote on them
* that requires petition signing after the law(s) is/are passed
* only signatures of registered voters count
* offer the person a paper registration form, and a pen

This experiment needs some data. The person - our registering person - needs to tally the number of people approached, and the kinds of reactions from the potential voters.

MY PREDICTION:

Remember, we're trying to work with an audience which should be sympathetic to gun rights.
At question 1, 25% or more of the total number will just ignore you; ~20% will answer 'Yes, I'm registered'.

At question 2, 25% or more of the total number will say or do something that means 'No' - won't register now/today/until something happens/ever


Feel free to suggest more or better 'spiel' approaches, and other places to register voters.

Now, the reason this is no risk is that it isn't putting anything specific on a ballot - no particular law or position is involved, except to the extent the proposed registration efforts are made in places where the expected density of gun owners is higher than in the general population. No actual vote is being solicited.

Librarian
03-03-2013, 2:44 PM
Bump - any interest?

Librarian
03-09-2013, 9:32 PM
Second bump

motorhead
03-09-2013, 9:46 PM
with the voter apathy i've seen in the last 2 elections it's filled with fail.

readysetgo
03-09-2013, 10:41 PM
My prediction (on volunteers to run a test, not the initiative or test itself):

85% of calgunners will not view this thread (hello they're in the marketplace and off topic right now, can't be bothered with this kind of stuff). :eek:

14.9% or more of the total number will say or do something that means 'No'. :cool:

.01% of say 35k members here on the board leaves you with about 35 people that might show some interest. :(


Something constructive?
This type of test could be run at the gun shows while people are standing in line for entry or while waiting for ammo. We could staff the CGSSA/CGN booths with a couple extra volunteers and have them work the lines. Or we could just do some kind of online test/poll to gather data. Just some thoughts.

gomatty
03-10-2013, 1:52 AM
My prediction (on volunteers to run a test, not the initiative or test itself):

85% of calgunners will not view this thread (hello they're in the marketplace and off topic right now, can't be bothered with this kind of stuff). :eek:

14.9% or more of the total number will say or do something that means 'No'. :cool:

.01% of say 35k members here on the board leaves you with about 35 people that might show some interest. :(


Something constructive?
This type of test could be run at the gun shows while people are standing in line for entry or while waiting for ammo. We could staff the CGSSA/CGN booths with a couple extra volunteers and have them work the lines. Or we could just do some kind of online test/poll to gather data. Just some thoughts.

So you're saying your optimistic?

hardcore4sure
03-10-2013, 5:43 AM
I'm in if it happens

violaron
03-10-2013, 6:34 AM
We already have the evidence that many gun owners are unwilling even to register to vote

This is the same problem with many other issues that come up for votes. Somehow the anti-liberty people are largely motivated to show up while we just about have to pull teeth to rouse folks out of their stupor.

Thank you Librarian (and others) for your work. It can be a very lonely job trying to motivate people. I plan on sticking it out here in California. I hope some will stick with me over the long haul.

David L Smith
03-10-2013, 9:57 AM
Post the initiative and the signature sheet online, to be printed out, signed, and mailed to a specific address?

LOW2000
03-10-2013, 11:14 AM
Wow necropost, I don't even remember originally making this post.

That said, I again believe we would need paid signature gatherers to make this happen.

A two (three) prong approach would be advisable at this time: Gathering signatures AND registering new voters in the mile-long lines at the local gun shows. Capitalizing on panic is what the other side is doing, no reason we can't use the same to our advantage while it lasts. This is the low hanging fruit that would be a large step towards the signatures needed to get on the ballot in the first place.

Secondly would be paid signature gatherers at the normal venues for collection such as supermarkets, etc. though I am not aware of the market data on those workers as to efficacy and cost per signature gathered.

30rdMag
03-10-2013, 11:29 AM
I think it could be done if planned right.

We would need most gun stores to jump on board
A strong education program for the sheep
People at gun shows or gun shows promoting
Target Door to Door in areas with data that shows high gun ownership.
Online media and Online push

If its ever going to happen its going to be now.

colossians323
03-10-2013, 1:30 PM
I'm in!

chrisn
03-10-2013, 2:06 PM
Well, we don't need a "Second Amendment for CA," because, post McDonald, the Fed 2A is binding on CA.

Since CA's existing laws (not to mention ones coming down the pike) are already at the extreme. And pending cases will very likely call into question (or outright strike down) some of the CA stuff.

So, I would humbly assert that time, money, effort (and some more money) should be focused on the legal strategies and not on a ballot initiatives. Did I mention money?

Despite that, if we want to try a "win over hearts and minds of voters" approach, I think we need to take a page from prior successful Propositions and do some MARKETING. The spiel and the measure need to be perceived as BALANCED. And some "not an inch" kind of people aren't going to like the Realpolitik implications of this.

For instance, you might replace the existing AWB with something that outlaws >15 round mags for pistols, >30 round for long guns (maybe with no grandfathering-- be tough!), require super-duper-titanium-tough background checks to buy your first semi-auto rifle with detachable mags (which won't amount to anything, but will help with marketing). Close the "Brown Gun" loophole! Your M1A needs a super-duper-check too! DiFi is soft on gun nuts!

You get the idea. Lump some REAL but REASONABLE stuff in with a package that rolls back the stupid stuff. It would be critical to work with select law enforcement groups to get their buy-in. Maybe we authorize some extra overtime budget to go after felons in unlawful possession. This kind of quasi-bribery is pretty common in (successful) propositions...

Librarian
03-20-2013, 11:52 PM
Bump ...

ArmedCMT
05-30-2013, 8:42 PM
I'm registered and I'm in.

nicki
05-30-2013, 9:40 PM
The reality is most gun owners won't do anything except "COMPLAIN".

If you refuse to even fight, then you volunteer to be a victim. Unlike many other states, we do have the ability to bypass the legislature.

The process won't be easy, but at least we have a chance if we try.

What it will come down to is leadership, we will need a lot of people to step up and actually lead across the state.

I have attended gun rallies over the years and this year the attendance in Sacramento was 3 times higher than what I saw in the past, so there is hope.

The gun stores are going to have to step up and get involved, any FFL who won't step up doesn't deserve our business. If will be bad enough that the Walmarts and Big 5s won't step up, but that is life.

Rather than writing up something for people to vote for, I suggest we be ready to run referendums on anything that Gov Brown signs.

We will have 90 days to get the signatures. It is doable if people stop making excuses about how they can't get 100 signatures each.

It is not that we can't, it is that we won't.

This issue is more than gun rights, it is all of our rights and that means we need to be willing to make alliances with people that we may strongly disagree with on many other things.

Filing the paperwork will draw a whatever from our opponents.
Getting a least one qualified for the Jun ballot will get our opponents attention
Getting all qualified will cause a "panic' among our opponents.

The 2014 election is an off election year, most likely Gov Brown will not be opposed in the Democratic primary. This means our opponents voters won't be motivated to vote.

An issue that will effect how many of our people will go to the polls will be how many Republicans will be running. Conservative and Libertarian type candidates have a vested interest in getting our supporters to the polls.

Off election years, especially the Primaries tend to be "LOW VOTER" turnout.
Neither of our US Senators are running for reelection.

A strong ground game and get out the voters across the state in the primaries could mean that we could pull a upset.

As a general rule of thumb, if people don't understand whats on the ballot, they vote "NO".

What we need to do is find a "gun group" or "groups" that have some media teflon, a group with a spokesperson that the media's right wing extremist label will have difficulty sticking too.

Of course this is unlikely to happen because the sad reality is most gun owners are just not motivated to step up for the rights and myself and others on this forum wish we could find a way to change that.

Nicki

Raystonn
05-30-2013, 9:52 PM
The 2A in the U.S. Constitution is already incorporated to have power over the States. A California 2A would only make things worse. They'd still create unconstitutional laws in the State legislatures, requiring years to work through the court system. But now we'd be moving through the liberal California court system instead of the federal system. So we'd be guaranteed to lose in court as well.

readysetgo
05-30-2013, 10:00 PM
The reality is most gun owners won't do anything except "COMPLAIN".

If you refuse to even fight, then you volunteer to be a victim. Unlike many other states, we do have the ability to bypass the legislature.

What it will come down to is leadership, we will need a lot of people to step up and actually lead across the state.

Effective leadership usually doesn't start off by demeaning the intended audience. ;)

Rather than writing up something for people to vote for, I suggest we be ready to run referendums on anything that Gov Brown signs.

I feel like I share your hope but it's more like an optimist's hope not based on a lot of facts. I do like your take on the voter turnout scenarios. Are you just guessing or is there data to back up what you're saying there?

Don't want to come off negative or rude but what you've said needs to be tempered w/ this little fact: Nobody (so far) would even be bothered to run a rudimentary "test" suggested by Librarian. You can debate if the test would be a waste of time or not, I'd say it would be super useful but that's beside my point. If it's not an indicator of the level of effort we could expect from an actual referendum, I don't know what else would be.

bwiese
05-30-2013, 10:31 PM
Folks, we have McDonald.

We do not need to have something else intermediating in a direct path.

People here are used to fast food, instant this, quick that... courts processes take time.

Curtis
05-31-2013, 5:51 AM
I'm in. I'd be willing to sit outside a non-gun related location.

readysetgo
05-31-2013, 7:36 AM
Folks, we have McDonald.

We do not need to have something else intermediating in a direct path.

People here are used to fast food, instant this, quick that... courts processes take time.

See post #13. Librarian "created" this thread off another, I'm not sure why he organized it this way but the meat of the thread is in post 13.

Develop a spiel and system to capture data and register people to vote. Go execute this test and see what if anything useful we learned. Referendum more than initiative. That's my understanding of where this was trying to head.

BretByron
05-31-2013, 8:38 AM
I'm in!

fr33domfightr
05-31-2013, 9:16 AM
Registering people to vote is one part. The second is to get them to actually vote.

Regarding the off year elections, that is a good time for things because conservatives generally always vote. I do.

However, didn't JB sign a bill that banned initiatives on the Primary Ballot?? I believe this was done specifically to take power away from those avid conservative voters, in response to liberals apathy (who might only vote in the General Election in November).

chainsaw
05-31-2013, 9:06 PM
with the voter apathy i've seen in the last 2 elections it's filled with fail.

Voter turnout in the last two presidential elections was very high, even among republicans and libertarians. For example, I have the data for one particular district for the November 2012 presidential election here: Turnout among democrats was 90.49%, among republicans 91.76% (higher than among democrats!), 82.60% among libertarians (but they are irrelevant, as they are only 2% of all registered voters), 86.10% among all other voters (which is the large block of "decline to state" voters), and overall 89.01%. I can't see voter apathy here, in particular not among republican voters.

I'm going to disagree with that, a lot.

We already have the evidence that many gun owners are unwilling even to register to vote; 'registered voter' is a requirement to validate a signature.
...

And I'll disagree with you. In the district described above, we did a registration drive, using very careful precinct walking, we had "block captains" check their neighborhoods, and we verified all publicly available lists of residents (for example, parents checked school phone lists). We discovered that the overwhelming majority of all adults who are eligible to vote are registered (most non-registered adults we found were ineligible to register, either because of not being citizens, or having a permanent residence elsewhere). We found only an additional 3.74% of voters who could register (and got a significant number of them to register to vote, when we explained to them that voting matters). Of those non-registered potential voters, the largest block were young people who had just turned 18 and had not yet registered to vote; we usually found them through old student rosters from the local schools. As we were unable to contact about a third of all households, we can extrapolate that less than 6% of the eligible voters are not registered to vote.

So claiming that "many gun owners are unwilling to register to vote" seems to not match reality, at least in this district: the vast majority of eligible adults are already registered to vote.

Now, a variant of your statement is probably correct: many gun owners on the anti-government anti-authoritarian end of the spectrum are registered to vote, and vote in important elections (see above for evidence), but are unwilling to become politically involved or active in any way, perhaps even to the extent that they are unwilling to admit that they are registered to vote, and likely even vote regularly.

The district used as an example above is a typical SF bay area upscale suburban district (average home values around $1M or slightly below), which votes in typical California fashion about 2/3 democrat, 1/3 republican. Oh, and if you haven't figured it out: I'm a political campaign consultant.

readysetgo
05-31-2013, 10:17 PM
Voter turnout in the last two presidential elections was very high, even among republicans and libertarians. For example, I have the data for one particular district for the November 2012 presidential election here: Turnout among democrats was 90.49%, among republicans 91.76% (higher than among democrats!), 82.60% among libertarians (but they are irrelevant, as they are only 2% of all registered voters), 86.10% among all other voters (which is the large block of "decline to state" voters), and overall 89.01%. I can't see voter apathy here, in particular not among republican voters.



And I'll disagree with you. In the district described above, we did a registration drive, using very careful precinct walking, we had "block captains" check their neighborhoods, and we verified all publicly available lists of residents (for example, parents checked school phone lists). We discovered that the overwhelming majority of all adults who are eligible to vote are registered (most non-registered adults we found were ineligible to register, either because of not being citizens, or having a permanent residence elsewhere). We found only an additional 3.74% of voters who could register (and got a significant number of them to register to vote, when we explained to them that voting matters). Of those non-registered potential voters, the largest block were young people who had just turned 18 and had not yet registered to vote; we usually found them through old student rosters from the local schools. As we were unable to contact about a third of all households, we can extrapolate that less than 6% of the eligible voters are not registered to vote.

So claiming that "many gun owners are unwilling to register to vote" seems to not match reality, at least in this district: the vast majority of eligible adults are already registered to vote.

Now, a variant of your statement is probably correct: many gun owners on the anti-government anti-authoritarian end of the spectrum are registered to vote, and vote in important elections (see above for evidence), but are unwilling to become politically involved or active in any way, perhaps even to the extent that they are unwilling to admit that they are registered to vote, and likely even vote regularly.

The district used as an example above is a typical SF bay area upscale suburban district (average home values around $1M or slightly below), which votes in typical California fashion about 2/3 democrat, 1/3 republican. Oh, and if you haven't figured it out: I'm a political campaign consultant.

This insights kinda awesome Chainsaw!

You just volunteered unwittingly as the CGN Chief Coordinator for Politcal Initiatives! :43:

But really, you should message pennys dad (http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/member.php?u=15879) and see if your expertise could help us out.

And would you comment specifically on the "test" suggested by Librarian in post #13? Thanks.

fr33domfightr
05-31-2013, 11:22 PM
Voter turnout in the last two presidential elections was very high, even among republicans and libertarians. For example, I have the data for one particular district for the November 2012 presidential election here: Turnout among democrats was 90.49%, among republicans 91.76% (higher than among democrats!), 82.60% among libertarians (but they are irrelevant, as they are only 2% of all registered voters), 86.10% among all other voters (which is the large block of "decline to state" voters), and overall 89.01%. I can't see voter apathy here, in particular not among republican voters.



And I'll disagree with you. In the district described above, we did a registration drive, using very careful precinct walking, we had "block captains" check their neighborhoods, and we verified all publicly available lists of residents (for example, parents checked school phone lists). We discovered that the overwhelming majority of all adults who are eligible to vote are registered (most non-registered adults we found were ineligible to register, either because of not being citizens, or having a permanent residence elsewhere). We found only an additional 3.74% of voters who could register (and got a significant number of them to register to vote, when we explained to them that voting matters). Of those non-registered potential voters, the largest block were young people who had just turned 18 and had not yet registered to vote; we usually found them through old student rosters from the local schools. As we were unable to contact about a third of all households, we can extrapolate that less than 6% of the eligible voters are not registered to vote.

So claiming that "many gun owners are unwilling to register to vote" seems to not match reality, at least in this district: the vast majority of eligible adults are already registered to vote.

Now, a variant of your statement is probably correct: many gun owners on the anti-government anti-authoritarian end of the spectrum are registered to vote, and vote in important elections (see above for evidence), but are unwilling to become politically involved or active in any way, perhaps even to the extent that they are unwilling to admit that they are registered to vote, and likely even vote regularly.

The district used as an example above is a typical SF bay area upscale suburban district (average home values around $1M or slightly below), which votes in typical California fashion about 2/3 democrat, 1/3 republican. Oh, and if you haven't figured it out: I'm a political campaign consultant.

Nice cherry pick. Can you provide the data for that same district in the Primaries in both the Presidential Race and the previous midterm? And since we don't want to focus on the more ideal, why not provide the typical or average voter turnout for those same voting periods, in a district with more middle class incomes?

I'd bet your data skews much farther south than your original example, especially in a midterm Primary. The Primary might be moot now, however, if Initiatives cannot be placed on the ballot at that time.

Sent from my SPH-D710 using Tapatalk 2

readysetgo
05-31-2013, 11:41 PM
Nice cherry pick. Can you provide the data for that same district in the Primaries in both the Presidential Race and the previous midterm? And since we don't want to focus on the more ideal, why not provide the typical or average voter turnout for those same voting periods, in a district with more middle class incomes?

I'd bet your data skews much farther south than your original example, especially in a midterm Primary. The Primary might be moot now, however, if Initiatives cannot be placed on the ballot at that time.

Why are you referencing "primary" so much? What is the relevance to potential referendum etc? Serious question, I'm confused there.

Or put another way, if he gives the data for your first question, what will that tell us?

2nd Mass
05-31-2013, 11:43 PM
So the experiment would be to entice citizens at firearms related areas to register to vote?

The overall goal to register gun owners to vote?

The request is for help to put together a pitch to do so? Pick a starbucks, bring a laptop and lets do it.

I'm in for that part. Not only will this work, it does work, the dems have proved it. It's all about motivation and persuasion with most people. Proof, I got two separate complete strangers to visit, donate and promise to resgister at Calguns booths today at the Turners fair. Considering I wasn't volunteering for Calguns today and just randomly testing out 2A discussions in shooting lines I'd say that's a limited sample with some potential.

fr33domfightr
06-01-2013, 12:00 AM
Why are you referencing "primary" so much? What is the relevance to potential referendum etc? Serious question, I'm confused there.

Or put another way, if he gives the data for your first question, what will that tell us?


Chainsaw was talking about voter apathy, or lack of it in his example, but his results are not typical. I asked him to show the results of other average districts, which should reveal this.

With active voter participation, you can win an Initiative/refendum, especially in the primary, since most people are apathetic and don't vote in primaries. This doesn't mean me, you, or chainsaw are apathetic, it just means the average person votes that way.

readysetgo
06-01-2013, 12:06 AM
So the experiment would be to entice citizens at firearms related areas to register to vote?

The overall goal to register gun owners to vote?

The request is for help to put together a pitch to do so? Pick a starbucks, bring a laptop and lets do it.

I'm in for that part. Not only will this work, it does work, the dems have proved it. It's all about motivation and persuasion with most people. Proof, I got two separate complete strangers to visit, donate and promise to resgister at Calguns booths today at the Turners fair. Considering I wasn't volunteering for Calguns today and just randomly testing out 2A discussions in shooting lines I'd say that's a limited sample with some potential.

Outstanding post in so many ways!

Chainsaw was talking about voter apathy, or lack of it in his example, but his results are not typical. I asked him to show the results of other average districts, which should reveal this.

With active voter participation, you can win an Initiative/refendum, especially in the primary, since most people are apathetic and don't vote in primaries. This doesn't mean me, you, or chainsaw are apathetic, it just means the average.

OK, thanks. I feel like I'm still missing something though. It's probably just me.

readysetgo
06-01-2013, 12:27 AM
Can I give it a shot to try and refocus the topic re: the experiment?

First see post #13 because IMO Librarian is spot on in several areas.

Second, can we mostly think of referendum? Initiative has been pointed out as a problem for multiple reasons several times already. Let's leave it out for now.

Primary goals
1. Gather Data
2. Register Sympathetic Voters

Primary reasons to strive for these goals
1. Successful Referendum (remember we need not be focused on a specific bill yet)

Benefits of goals 1 & 2
1. Data - I'm assuming this will be necessary to run an actual referendum
2. Registering sympathetic voters is necessary to two parts
a. To obtain valid petition signatures
b. To ensure once a referendum is started it has the votes to suceed
Also, a side benefit as previously stated benefit of steering future elections our way.

The pitch or mechanics of the experiment.

Everything librarian suggests and...

At least a two man team. One to pitch and one to capture the data and work paperwork.

Think of "the pitch" as a flow chart.

Beginner tips: Smile, greet properly.

*****it's late and the forums format's not conducive to flow chart style, I'll come back w/ an actual flow chart to illustrate sometime this weekend*****

to be continued

fr33domfightr
06-01-2013, 12:38 AM
Outstanding post in so many ways!



OK, thanks. I feel like I'm still missing something though. It's probably just me.

Suppose a midterm primary election is coming up, and your Initiative is on the ballot.

Most people are apathetic (from my understanding), especially in a midterm primary. Let's assume registered voters are 50% of the general population. On election day, maybe 50% of those registered actually vote, which means only 25% of the population actually voted. With conservatives, the registration and vote turnout is much higher, and this is especially seen in the primary when most nonconservatives voters stay home. Of that 50% of voters mentioned earlier, if 20% voted NO and 30% (the conservatives) voted YES, your Initiative would win. Why? Because the non conservatives were apathetic and didn't vote. It also means, in this example, that 7.5% of the population can be very powerful.

My point is, generally people are apathetic voters. Conservatives seem to be much better. However, if we can register people, and get them motivated to actually vote, we can make positive changes with Initiatives/referendums.

This is why Jerry Brown signed the bill barring Initiatives in primaries. <-- And this is a scum bag. He knows conservatives practically always vote, so this is his way of taking our power away.

CA-Libertarian
06-01-2013, 12:41 AM
I moved this post out of the initiatives thread to its own thread here - please keep reading, it isn't really a necropost!

// Librarian

We tried to get enough signatures 2 years ago to get a "2nd amendment" added to our state constitution, we failed by a LOT of signatures. Unless you have paid signature gatherers, you don't have a snowballs chance of even getting on the ballot, let alone getting the exposure to get people to vote in favor.

If the folks here on Calguns had the same fervor and guts to boycott the anti-politicians as they do a store like Staples (who is beholden to shareholders and private enterprise) we would not have these issues. Couple that with the public union effect and we would be unstoppable. In our case, the meek have not inherited the Kingdom! We are simply subservient to its existence!

fr33domfightr
06-01-2013, 12:46 AM
I moved this post out of the initiatives thread to its own thread here - please keep reading, it isn't really a necropost!

// Librarian

We tried to get enough signatures 2 years ago to get a "2nd amendment" added to our state constitution, we failed by a LOT of signatures. Unless you have paid signature gatherers, you don't have a snowballs chance of even getting on the ballot, let alone getting the exposure to get people to vote in favor.

If highly organized first, I'd bet we could get it done, easily. But it needs that organizational structure built for this task. Like a pyramid.

readysetgo
06-01-2013, 12:51 AM
Suppose a midterm primary election is coming up, and your Initiative is on the ballot.

Most people are apathetic (from my understanding), especially in a midterm primary. Let's assume registered voters are 50% of the general population. On election day, maybe 50% of those registered actually vote, which means only 25% of the population actually voted. With conservatives, the registration and vote turnout is much higher, and this is especially seen in the primary when most nonconservatives voters stay home. Of that 50% of voters mentioned earlier, if 20% voted NO and 30% (the conservatives) voted YES, your Initiative would win. Why? Because the non conservatives were apathetic and didn't vote. It also means, in this example, that 7.5% of the population can be very powerful.

My point is, generally people are apathetic voters. Conservatives seem to be much better. However, if we can register people, and get them motivated to actually vote, we can make positive changes with Initiatives/referendums.

This is why Jerry Brown signed the bill barring Initiatives in primaries. <-- And this is a scum bag. He knows conservatives practically always vote, so this is his way of taking our power away.

I understand this now. Thank you. I would say though, we (in general) shouldn't go back and forth re: "are voters too apathetic for this to be successful?" Because, well, we'll just go back and forth! :(

It leads me to a more useful question that I couldn't figure from the SOS link.
What is the timeline for a referendum?

eg The leg passes bill x on aug 1, gov signs bill into law on sep 1 (IDK if these dates are in line with reality, just throwing em out).

When would the next available vote be and what is our timeframe to get it on the ballot?

Chief2Guns
06-01-2013, 1:03 AM
:lurk5: I'm in.

BonnieB
06-01-2013, 6:35 AM
Not to be a wet blanket, but is the idea to keep 2A alive in CA if the Federal Government drops it by means of a Constitutional Ammendment?

If so, that doesn't work. Federal laws outweigh state laws. See

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Law_of_the_United_States

You may not love it, but Federal law prevails, especially in interstate commerce (as in how Glocks get shipped to CA from Georgia). It might take a while to get argued through the Supreme Court, but Federal laws will always prevail, assuming they are Constitutional in the first place. Think about recent Arizona immigration laws being overturned. And the major Civil Rights battles that have gone on, regardless of how states fought it.

California is not a republic anymore and its Constitution does not prevail over the US Constitution. You may disagree and start up about 'states rights', many do, but a CA Constitutional Amendment would only restrain law enforcement from enforcing laws the the Federal 2A doesn't cover.

The real way to improve California's situation is to work on the voters and the media. After all, California is usually the most populous state (neck and neck with NY) and therefore has the most Congressional Representatives. The voters and the media are the only way to change the legal and social situation. We are wasting our time and money trying to convert state legislators. Believe me, because I've been in in two major Constitutional issues in my life and have won .

readysetgo
06-01-2013, 12:36 PM
This thread sucks and is great at the same time. People are checking in, reading the first post and then rolling the eyes. Understandably. But... There's some brilliance in here as far as grass movement stuff that would NOT take 6 million dollars and a waste of effort.

:shrug: Oh well.

Raystonn
06-01-2013, 12:42 PM
If something changes and the Supreme Court strips us of our individual rights to keep and bear arms, the same arms an infantry soldier would bear, then I will support any and all action. Until then, stay the course.

pHredd9mm
06-01-2013, 1:29 PM
An initiative would need to be a civil rights based initiative copying selected Bill of Rights language, but adding punitive language for any politician, district attorney, bureaucrat, LEO, etc., that would even try to infringe on these civil rights. We would have to have language in it to garner support from women's groups, gay & lesbian groups, and other civil rights activist groups. A big tent to get a lot of civil rights support.

readysetgo
06-01-2013, 3:03 PM
Anybody else wanna join the onslaught of thread comprehension fail? :43:

We ARE doomed! :willy_nilly:

Librarian
06-01-2013, 4:10 PM
An initiative would need to be a civil rights based initiative copying selected Bill of Rights language, but adding punitive language for any politician, district attorney, bureaucrat, LEO, etc., that would even try to infringe on these civil rights. We would have to have language in it to garner support from women's groups, gay & lesbian groups, and other civil rights activist groups. A big tent to get a lot of civil rights support.

Anybody else wanna join the onslaught of thread comprehension fail? :43:

We ARE doomed! :willy_nilly:

Umm, yes.

pHred, the point here is to highlight that even the people we think are pro-gun frequently decline to participate in the political process. Lots of people seem unable to accept that, so I used this thread to propose an experiment which, in my expectation, would show the truth of that proposition.

Until we figure out how to get the votes from (those whom we would hope to be) our friends, going to our enemies is a fools's errand.

Remember, California voters elected the people who have been introducing and voting for the bills we think are so bad. Going to the California voters and expecting a different result needs a whole bunch of convincing.

bomb_on_bus
06-01-2013, 4:16 PM
Im in!

If enough people jump on board with this it might have a chance to gain some momentum.

VAReact
06-01-2013, 6:39 PM
I'm willing to help with this.

chainsaw
06-01-2013, 10:06 PM
Nice cherry pick. Can you provide the data for that same district in the Primaries in both the Presidential Race and the previous midterm?

Here you go for the June 2012 primary. Remember, the primary races were totally irrelevant in California, and there were a few not terribly contested propositions on the ballot, so you would expect turnout to be low. And it was:
Democrats: 64.50% turnout
Republicans: 67.52% turnout
Libertarians: 47.37% turnout (but they are irrelevant, there are so few)
All other registrations: 50.00% turnout (I had to double check, exactly half)
Overall turnout: 61.33%.

So even in a low-turnout election, about two thirds of the voters show up at the polls. I also have data for really uninteresting elections (mail ballots, with a single issue on it, like school board, water board, or school special tax), and turnout it still typically around 50%.

I did the same database query for the November 2010 election (this is the congressional election where the tea-party led republicans held the house), and the results are similar to the 2012 presidential election: Democrat turnout is 89.46%, republican turnout is 86.94%, and I can't be bothered to waste the 10 minutes it would take me to deal with all the minor parties and decline-to-state voters, I presume they are similar.

Unfortunately, I no longer have the data for the 2008 presidential election handy, that has been archived away.

And since we don't want to focus on the more ideal, why not provide the typical or average voter turnout for those same voting periods, in a district with more middle class incomes?

I'd bet your data skews much farther south than your original example, ...

That's quite possible. I just looked up LA county for fun, and the overall turnout in the November 2012 election was 70.46%, but in the June 2012 primary it dropped to 21.87%. Now let's look at a conservative rural county, namely Calaveras county: Turnout there was 76.10% and 49.65% for the same two elections. So a claim that republicans don't like to vote, in particular in "unimportant" elections, is not born out by that one quick glimpse. Conservatives vote, at about the same rate as non-conservatives. Turnout is generally higher in rural areas, in affluent areas, and if an important (or well-publicized or well-campaigned local measure is on the ballot), but that applies to both liberal and conservative voters in those areas.

Unfortunately, the only data set I can use to break that turnout down by indicators such as party affiliation, gender, age, geographic location, and such is the one I used in my example; it is the only district for which I purchased the election result data myself, for volunteer work. The other datasets are the property of paying clients, and I would be breaking contracts if I mis-used then for gun rights volunteer work. If CGN or CGF want a more detailed analysis of expected voter behavior, they can purchase the data from the county registrars of voters (it is not cheap!), and pay someone to analyze it.

... The Primary might be moot now, however, if Initiatives cannot be placed on the ballot at that time.

That is unfortunately true for statewide measures that are placed on the ballot by initiative or referendum. The proponents can no longer pick the most advantageous election date. But: California has some very large counties (LA, OC, SD, SClara), and pro-gun measures in those counties would be politically powerful. And AFAIK, in a county you can still pick pretty much any election date, perhaps even a mail-ballot only election. That might be worth looking into: pick of county by county, and once the 5 or 10 largest counties are in the bag, either declare victory (since small counties tend to be pro-gun anyhow), or watch state politician turn county measures into state law. This might do wonders for a pro-CCW measure for example. (This is obviously assuming that it is possible to get any pro-gun measure passed in California, which I find extremely unlikely).

This insights kinda awesome Chainsaw!

You just volunteered unwittingly as the CGN Chief Coordinator for Politcal Initiatives! :43:
I'm sorry, but you forget that I am not a pro-gun activist, and that I have no intention to help CGN and CGF, very much on the contrary. I do volunteer work for the causes of my choice only. If your name is Rognerud or Keigwin (now departed) and you need help rewriting SB 249 into SB 47, I'll be delighted to help (but that's done now).


With active voter participation, you can win an Initiative/refendum, especially in the primary, since most people are apathetic and don't vote in primaries. This doesn't mean me, you, or chainsaw are apathetic, it just means the average person votes that way.

That doesn't actually work very well. Which doesn't mean that I haven't tried it, but usually not with good results. What you are proposing is this: Pick an unusual election date, put an obscure measure on the ballot, and hope that most people ignore the election. Then get your own base all riled up, and make sure your people vote, and they vote the way you want them to vote. If you believe that most apathetic voters ignore the election, and only your supporters go to the poll, you should win by a landslide, right?

This has a small grain of truth in it. Trying to keep an election campaign low-key, and deliberately targeting your known supporters for GOTV (get-out-the-vote) drives are indeed valuable tools. But there are several things that make this difficult, and also limit this to only being able to change the election result by a small margin. First: About 10-20% of the voters will always vote. These are habitual voters, often older people or recently registered new voters (18-year olds or newly naturalized citizens). They will read the voter pamphlet, go on the web, and attend "league of women voter" events. In California, those people will break about 2:1 anti-gun, so you have to overcome that natural hurdle. Second, in order to target your supporters, you have to know who they are. You can get a list of all registered voters in an area (or in the whole state, if you have big $$$). But where do you get a list of all pro-gun voters, to contact only them? Unlike the DoJ and ATF, you don't have access to gun registration data; using the party affiliation is risky (there are plenty of anti-gun republicans, and even more pro-gun democrats). This technique works where you can create lists of voters from outside sources, in particular for local development issues (real estate records), or school issues (lists of current and recent students and their families), but it won't work for guns. Third, this trick only works if you have no opposition. Because once the other side gets wind that you are trying to swing an election by using GOTV for one side only, they need to do only a small amount of campaigning among your opposition (yard signs, newspaper ads, leaking your strategy to the press, mailer to all voters), and turnout on our opposition will explode. And sending a postcard to every registered voter is remarkably cheap (the postage is the biggest part of that, so it is somewhere between a quarter and $0.46 per household), so the opposition can quickly and cheaply overwhelm you. Trust me, I've been there, and I dread the phone call from campaign volunteers when they report that all voters just got a badly-made postcard, sent by Vistaprint back east, and probably created by my adversary. Because once the cat is out of the bag, you no longer have the luxury of only working on the easy problem (increasing turnout among your loyal supporters), but now you have to solve the hard problem: convincing most voters to see things your way.


Let's assume registered voters are 50% of the general population.
They are not. They are closer to 90%. Perhaps in other areas that's somewhat lower, but nowhere near 50%. There is no way you can massively swing the outcome of an election (by a factor of two or three) using registration drives. While registration drives are a useful tool, they will at best give you a 5-10% advantage. In a tight election (presidential election or such), this makes a huge difference. In gun rights in California, you are fighting a 2:1 uphill battle.

With conservatives, the registration and vote turnout is much higher, and this is especially seen in the primary when most nonconservatives voters stay home.
That is also false. Registration and turnout among conservatives is not higher, in particular not significantly higher. In "unimportant" elections, the influence of frequent voters (I described them above) is larger, but they are not particularly conservative. When I talk to these voters (frequent voters are known in the business as high-value targets), they are often retired school teachers, retired union pipe fitters, and lots of housewives. Not your typical pro-gun group.

When would the next available vote be and what is our timeframe to get it on the ballot?
For a statewide initiative measure: General elections are held in November of even-numbered years. You'r looking at 11/2014. If you start organizing now, there is time to get on the ballot; you have about 3 months to get major donors lined up (for a statewide measure, we're talking dozens of millions of $), get an organization going, and be at the Secretary of State's office by the September 2013 deadline.


:lurk5: I'm in.
Great. You want to be one of the trailblazers, and do this with a small set of like-minded friends? Someone from CGN will contact you soon, and tell you where to mail your check for $10,000,000. Oh, you don't have ten million sitting around? Well, then you're just blowing smoke, and your're not actually in.

Qualifying a state-wide measure in California costs many dozens of millions of dollars. I don't know how large the total budget of CGF is, but last I checked, it was way below one million (around a tenth of a million, on the last tax return that was published). Let's do a little thought experiment: Can we crowd-fund a pro-gun campaign? How many active members does CGN have? Let it be 30,000. How many NRA members are there in California? I would estimate around a quarter million. If every single Calguns forum poster donated $1,000, and every NRA member in California donated $100, then we would have enough money. And I mean EVERY SINGLE ONE! Anytime a member doesn't donate, your have to pick up an extra share. So if I refuse to donate, your share just doubled to $2,000. Are you still in?

Remember, elections tend to cost anywhere from $5 to $20 per vote (my cheapest election ever, which I won by a landslide of over 80%, cost only $3 per vote in election spending, but I had an incredible set of volunteers who worked for free, tirelessly). And California is big and has lots of voters.

chainsaw
06-01-2013, 10:58 PM
Since only registered voters can be counted on the petitions, the goal - that will actually be useful, this is not wasted effort - is to get more gun owners or civil right advocates registered to vote, so when/if a referendum petition comes out, the person would be a valid signature.

They are most likely already registered to vote. But your idea is really good, except you're doing it for the wrong reason. You need to spend a lot of effort on finding out who your supporters are. So the real reason you're approaching them is to get their name, phone number, and e-mail. Because once campaigning starts, you will first try to convince the to vote, and more importantly, try to convince them to donate to your campaign. So think of this first phase as a huge privacy-violating machine, where you collect contact information for all your "friends".

Assume that every person you approach will tell you the truth.

Bad assumption. I have actually managed to occasionally measure this. Ask a person whether they will vote, and they tell you they have already voted. Then, after the election, look at the vote return data, and you find that they never actually did vote. I typically assume that people tell me the truth about 80-90% of the time; the rest of the time they lie to me, in an attempt to either make me go away, or tell me what they think I want to hear.

1) approach a person and ask if he/she is registered to vote.
1A If Yes, ask which county, and record that
At this point, they will frequently (perhaps 50% of the time) not answer, tell you something like "not interested in politics", and walk away.

The approach has to be the opposite. You first need to establish a rapport with the voter, and convince them that their interests are aligned with your interests, or that you and them are part of the same community or tribe. This requires lots of finesse. For example, if you meet them at a shooting range, you could start the conversation by talking about Glock versus Sig pistols (if you see them carrying a Sig case), ingratiate yourself to them, and create a personal connection. After a few minutes, you can then change to political topics, without losing them.

Here is a snippet of the script I use for school-related elections. Assume that you have found out that the voter you're approaching is the parent of a student who went to school there 10 years ago: "Hi, my name is XXX, and I'm a volunteer with a group that supports Santa Rosita schools. Say, didn't you have a kid who went to Santa Rosita High a while ago? My kid is in the art program, and he says that the art teacher remembers your son Adam. <bla bla bla> Oh I see, your son never did art, but was in the band? Was Mr. Miller already the band director back then? <bla bla bla>. Oh, I didn't know Mrs. Rodriguez taught band back then. Did you know she's now the the Spanish teacher? <bla bla bla> Yes, I know she's really friendly, but her homework assignments are brutal. <bla bla bla> Well, thanks for that tip, that's really good to hear. I'll tell my kid to not sign up for Spanish, if you say that Mr. Chen's Chinese class is much easier.

By the way, have you heard about the school board election that's coming up? I'm wondering what you think about George, whose running for the open seat. Rumor has it that he is supported by those awful anti-abortion religious fundamentalists. <bla bla bla> I see, you used to know him from PTA meetings back then, and he was already unsufferable back then. Well, you know, I'm campaigning for Harry instead. He's been on the board for 5 years, and he's endorsed by Mary-Ann, the first grade teacher. <bla bla bla> Good to hear. You know, if you give me your e-mail address, I can quickly shoot you some info about George versus Harry, I know a few people that have compiled a little fact-sheet about the election. Please do me a favor, and vote for Harry, to help the school. Well, nice talking to you, and say hi to your son Adam for me."

See what I did here? I got the voter to listen to me, and only started bothering them with evil politics once we had established a personal connection. If you start the conversation with "are you registered to vote", you'll end the conversation right there, and you can't afford that. To swing an election, you need to have a channel of communication with as many voters as possible.

This experiment needs some data. The person - our registering person - needs to tally the number of people approached, and the kinds of reactions from the potential voters.
The data will depend crucially on the volunteer, and on the clientele. A good volunteer with the right set of voters will do great, but that doesn't tell you very much ... because you can't find hundreds of great volunteers (you'll have some great ones, many so-so ones, and a few really awful ones).

Your first step need to be creating a base of volunteers, and training them. Every volunteer needs to spend a few hours learning about the issues (in detail, there is nothing worse than a volunteer who gets wound around the axle about the facts), and how to approach voters. What I do is pretend interviews, where am experienced coach pretends to be a voter, and the volunteer has to do the contact, while the other volunteers watch and critique. We tend to do that for several hours per volunteer, before releasing them into the wild.

Your predictions:

At question 1, 25% or more of the total number will just ignore you; ~20% will answer 'Yes, I'm registered'.

At question 2, 25% or more of the total number will say or do something that means 'No' - won't register now/today/until something happens/ever


Depending on how good the volunteer is, and how well he's been trained, these predictions may be correct. For a beginner, the failure rate will be much higher.

So this is great. If you train volunteers, and put a lot of effort into it, you might be able to determine that A: Most gun-related people are registered to vote, and B: Most gun-related people would vote in favor of a referendum that stops current anti-gun legislation. Or at least they say so, but you can't trust them. I don't think you will find that there are lots of unregistered pro-gun people around.

Now what? You put this referendum on the ballot. Anti-gun groups hear about that (you can't do this in secret), and they will out-campaign the heck out of you. A little bit of a registration drive among gun-related people won't save you from the 2:1 disadvantage you have in the general anti-gunout outlook of California voters. Now what? How do you intend to convince the voters who don't have guns at home, who don't shoot, who only hear about guns in the context of TV news about Sandy Hook, or about a murder that happened two blocks down the road, that guns are good?

This is the part that's completely missing in all these unrealistic visions of putting gun rights to a popular vote: what arguments can you use to convince the majority to suddenly like guns? The "gun rights are civil rights" argument won't fly. Voters are not constitutional lawyers (at least most aren't), nor do they specialize in the philosophy of "individual versus state". You can convince them to vote for something, because it helps them (makes their local roads better, gives their kids a better education, lowers their taxes), or because it's good for the community (allows little Lisa next door to go to the school of her choice, gives old Grandma Winifred from church better healthcare, or makes us all into one big happy family). Most voters in California don't own guns, don't use guns, are afraid of them, and just want them to go away.

And: You do you propose to out-campaign and out-organize the anti-gun forces? Remember, many elections are won simply because one side has more resources (dollars and man-hours) than the other side.

Let me ask you a question. For a statewide election, you need dozens of millions of dollars, and tens of thousands of volunteers who put in many hours each. If those were available, why aren't they already active? How many dollars are flowing into the CGF every year? How many volunteer hours are the various CGN-related groups spending today? I would claim that gun rights groups are several orders of magnitude away from the level of commitment required to be politically relevant in this state.

And then there is an even harder question. If you had $100M and 10K volunteers at your disposal. Would doing a state-wide election be a good use of those resource? I hate to agree with Gene, Brandon, and Josh on anything (I typically agree on about nothing with them, and I'm of the opinion that they are the biggest danger to gun rights in this state), but if these resources were actually available, then a well-run campaign of strategic lawsuits would probably be a better investment.

For an example, look at the reproductive rights field. Has Planned Parenthood tried to put a measure on the ballot that declares that abortion is unquestionably legal, and restrictions impossible? No. They're not stupid enough to try that. They work on lobbying, lawsuits, and convincing individual donors and volunteers.

Librarian
06-02-2013, 1:50 AM
Nice responses, chainsaw. You've got hands-on info; thanks for sharing. Your conclusion is the same as mine: I would claim that gun rights groups are several orders of magnitude away from the level of commitment required to be politically relevant in this state.

And then there is an even harder question. If you had $100M and 10K volunteers at your disposal. Would doing a state-wide election be a good use of those resource? I hate to agree with Gene, Brandon, and Josh on anything (I typically agree on about nothing with them, and I'm of the opinion that they are the biggest danger to gun rights in this state), but if these resources were actually available, then a well-run campaign of strategic lawsuits would probably be a better investment.
See http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?t=156804, from which the older set of posts in this thread was moved.

A nit - In CA in 2013, Sec of State says (http://www.sos.ca.gov/elections/ror/ror-pages/ror-odd-year-2013/hist-reg-stats.pdf) 75.68% are registered.

I picked voter registration as the experiment to demonstrate the larger point because I believe getting people registered is a net positive, and has little risk to gun rights per se; other posts in the thread suggest that getting people to participate has been difficult in past efforts (whatever quality of effort that may have been). The 'I do not want to be on any lists' response is the one in the forefront of my thoughts.

And 'assume they will tell you the truth' was a simplification to avoid arguing with people ...

readysetgo
06-02-2013, 8:40 AM
I'm sorry, but you forget that I am not a pro-gun activist, and that I have no intention to help CGN and CGF, very much on the contrary. I do volunteer work for the causes of my choice only. If your name is Rognerud or Keigwin (now departed) and you need help rewriting SB 249 into SB 47, I'll be delighted to help (but that's done now).


Ooops! No, need to be sorry and I didn't forget, I never knew! Call me naive but I live my life as honorable as possible on a daily basis and when I don't agree w/ a group or someone individually, I let bygones be. I don't make them my enemies and seek them out to infiltrate or irritate.

Never the less, thanks for the responses. These are interesting subjects in their own rights.

bigcalidave
06-02-2013, 8:40 AM
Having done voter registration and signature gathering, I can tell you it's absolutely awful. Even with the number of people we have here, dealing with training and paperwork and clipboards and scheduling, trying to convince thousands of people to sit outside a supermarket or gas station for six to eight hours a day for months just isn't going to happen. The only way to get enough signatures is with a paid group. It's 1-2$ per signature, verified and checked for duplicates on proper forms.
Don't forget you have to write an initiative that will actually do something, and won't just fall apart at some stage of the challenge it will face.
Millions of dollars, just to get something on the ballot. If you can pay, you can get enough signatures, it's all about the money.

Chief2Guns
06-04-2013, 10:50 PM
So how did the Founding Father's do it, they didnt have the money just the will of a few brave men.