Citizens are now able to take a breath from the political storm that passed through the U.S. leading up to Nov. 6. As Karolina Rivas and Nathaniel Perez report, with the end of highly competitive races, came a close to campaign ads.
Students at the University of Nevada, Reno, say the bombardment of political videos on YouTube became annoying. Photo by Karolina RIvas.
Nevada Ranked High in TV Campaign Spending
With incessant political television commercial breaks to stacks of flyers in one’s mailbox to canvassers knocking on residential doors during the past election cycle, Reno citizens told the Reynolds Sandbox they are thankful for the midterms to be over.
Each election, millions of dollars are invested into trying to influence voters with political ads. As of early October, nearly $72.5M was spent on bipartisan Nevada Senate campaigns for TV ads — making Nevada the second highest state in T.V. campaign expenditures in the U.S.
“I think that canvassing was highly effective this election season,” Tyler Parry, canvasserfor NV Dems, said. “Having a strong grassroots organization where we talked directly to the voters had a great effect. We saw that even in races where the Democrat lost, it was by small margins and an effective canvassing team is largely responsible.”
Flyers kept pouring in during the election cycle. Photo by Lucia Starbuck.
However, for one University of Nevada, Reno student, this method did not resonate well. Rosellan Alquiza says she was overwhelmed with the amount of paper used to get political messages across.
“I am relieved that there will there will be no more excessive amounts of wasted paper being shoved in between the crack of my door or on the handle,” Alquiza said.
Other UNR students shared similar sentiments, such as Sarah Robinson, whose parents work at the United States Post Office.
“It was a nightmare,” Robinson said. “You start to think about the cost of these political ads and if you figure in the number of days they mail from the first day of campaigning to election day that adds up. They pay for these wasteful flyers but it creates jobs and it kept my parents busy.”
Some canvassers like Parry said they missed the thrill of the election season. Photo by Nathaniel Perez.
Missing the Interaction
But for some canvassers, the end of the election season leaves an empty feeling. Parry says while he is out of a job until the 2020 presidential election, he misses interacting with voters. He described himself in this post-election season as a “soldier without a war.”
“I actually miss it,” Parry said. “It is fun exploring all of these neighborhoods and talking to a very diverse group of people. […] As for the homeowners, I think some of them are glad that we are gone and done for the cycle.”
Reporting by Karolina Rivas and Nathaniel Perez for the Reynolds Sandbox