Programming notes

While many of my friends are watching the Republican presidential debate this evening, I’m trying to create a small-scale one of my own.

Years ago, longtime readers may recall I did a series called “Ten Questions.” One of its early iterations was asking Senate candidates to answer a list of questions I sent them, and at the end I created a mock debate with the answers. (This was back in 2006, and back then I was much more bipartisan.)

I don’t know if I will do the same thing this time, but I indeed sent out 10 questions to the fourteen Republicans who are on the ballot in the primary. The reason I’m not sure about my goal for the content is because I found out some people are very long-winded and they don’t necessarily write well. So I may end up summarizing what remarks I get. Another thing I recall about my first effort was that participation was spotty at best. I could never figure out passing up free publicity, but I’m sure these folks are just bombarded with surveys and requests so some fall through the cracks.

Since I sent out the e-mail last night, I have received one response, along with an auto-response and two bounces. Out of fourteen candidates, thirteen had e-mail addresses on file with the Board of Elections and I used twelve of them. The thirteenth one came from this candidate’s website since I believed the address on file had a typo. Candidate number 14 did not have an e-mail address but I tracked this person down from Facebook and sent it as a private message.

It’s also unfortunate that the two candidates whose e-mail bounced are two of those with no website. It’s their loss.

To be honest, I haven’t made up my mind in the Senate or Congressional races yet, which is why I started this exercise – in both races there are good candidates. (Obviously my Congressman can run on his record, too.) I don’t think I will need to do this for my Congressional race since I know the aspirants much better.

As for other upcoming posts, I will have a quite lengthy odds and ends post this weekend. There must be thirty pieces of mail in my box with something that piqued my interest, yet with basketball season wrapping up I haven’t had a lot of time to read and catch up. I need a good day of writing to serve as therapy, since the touch of OCD I have desires that all my mailboxes be empty. (Yes, it has happened before, and quite recently. The oldest item in any of my inboxes is from January 28, and that’s from TurboTax reminding me to do my taxes. Maybe by April.)

Of course, over the next few days I have to check for would-be Senators sending me stuff. It’s just one vote for me, but I do get a few readers a day who might be interested as well.

Maybe I’ll even put up a poll. One thing I saw yesterday: the Sun talked about how the Edwards-Van Hollen race on the Democratic side was even, but mentioned the pollster didn’t do Republican candidates. That’s a sad state of affairs, even in Maryland.

So the GOP has to get its word out, and I’m kinda sorta doing it for free. Seems like a good deal to me.

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