Sampling Voter’s Opinions During COVID-19

How do voters feel about how Pres. Trump and Gov. Inslee have responded to Coronavirus? What do voters think about the closure of schools through the end of the year?

During the past month, Voter Science conducted two robodial surveys of registered voters across Washington state to poll opinions on questions around the COVID crisis and the response of national and state leaders. A total of 2,643 voters responded to a poll taken March 29th and 1,801 voters responded to our poll taken April 13th. We asked a set of tracking questions in each poll to gauge approval of Pres. Donald Trump’s and Gov. Jay Inslee’s handling of the Coronavirus, and to find out what voters predictions were for how long life might be stuck in this “new normal.”
In addition to those tracking questions, in our April 13th poll we asked for reactions on two topical issues: how well are schools meeting the needs of newly homebound students and are voters happy about the newly enacted and highly controversial K-12 sex ed law. In both cases, we found a population looking for better leadership.
For additional insights from this research, or information on how we can help you use research to know voters better, please email us at info@Voter-Science.com.

Voter Science Collaborates with WSRP to Keep Party Business Moving During COVID-19

One month ago, the Washington State Republican Party realized that holding in-person legislative district caucus meetings and county conventions would not be possible. Yet, the election of delegates still needed to happen.

Voter Science engineers went to work quickly and in 7 days turned around a secure and “ready-for-primetime” tool to facilitate virtual balloting and delegate selection. The King County GOP was also instrumental in making sure our technology was run though its paces, and ran at least 10 mock elections in record time to run to iron out wrinkles before live elections began two weeks ago with counties reporting great success. More counties are scheduled to conduct their own delegate elections over the next few weeks.

The collaboration between Voter Science and the WSRP on the use of political technology amid the COVID crisis made news in The Wall Street Journal:

As Washington state reels from the coronavirus pandemic, its local Republican Party has a backup plan in case it isn’t possible for hundreds of people to gather in June to pick delegates to the Republican National Convention two months later.

The state’s “virtual” convention plan, which it is already employing for smaller, local meetings, could be a model for the two national political parties if the pandemic lingers and disrupts their massive gatherings scheduled for August.…

Washington Republican Party Chairman Caleb Heimlich said he realized by mid-March that hundreds of people couldn’t safely gather for local meetings to elect delegates for the state gathering, even though it had been delayed from mid-May to late June. He enlisted political tech startup Voter Science to quickly build a platform for voting, paired with Zoom videoconferencing for participants to interact…

Voter Science is proud to pitch in to keep the work of dedicated Republican activists going during this difficult election cycle. We’re committed to proving that we don’t need to make a choice between being safe and keeping our Republic functioning.

3 Things Voter-Science is doing to help during COVID

Here are some specific actions VS is taking to help during the COVID crisis.

[1] New tool for Remote Party Elections and Delegate Selections

Continuing to have a functioning political system through any crisis is of deep concern to us at Voter Science. Voter Science is working hand in hand with the state GOP and county parties to solve the challenge of facilitating caucus voting and election of party leadership at a time when in-person meetings are not possible.

While there are solid remote conferencing tools like Zoom, UberConference, GotoMeeting, and FreeConferenceCall, there aren’t affordable remote election tools that handle the unique challenges for remote balloting such as complex bylaws with multiples rounds of voting and district weighting.

VS developed an online ballot system, VS QuickVote that can be used by county and state conventions and similar organizations for doing remote elections. Quick Vote extends our previous tool for building recommendation pages (ie, SlateBuilder) with the ability to vote on those candidates in primary and general elections.

 

[2] Help grassroots influence impactful COVID decisions

Our government is making bold COVID decisions which are impacting our daily lives. People can use our free petition builder platform to organize on issues and build lists for grassroots development on issues and not just party affiliation.

For example, in Washington state there is controversy around Gov. Inslee’s decision NOT to include private sector construction workers as essential businesses thereby ordering them to stay at home, while many tax-funded  government and union construction workers are still working.   A free petition was started to raise awareness of the issue:  “Construction Work Is Essential”  which got over 9,000 signatures in a few days in just one legislative district (nearly 8% of the district population). This greatly helps identify the people impacted by this decision and help grassroots and candidates organize a response.

Any candidate’s first task should be testing the waters with an online petition. If there’s an issue impacting you or your community and you need a voice, start your own petition at https://PetitionBuilder.org

 

[3] Need for more affordable solutions, especially for local elections

As the country faces a global pandemic and unprecedented unemployment, political donations naturally decline. Political campaigns need to find a way to make do on a smaller budget. VS has a large set of free and affordable offerings for campaign and voter management. Contact us or visit  https://Start.Voter-Science.com  to get started. We also share the source for our assets at https://github.com/voter-science, and even expose free APIs to integrate with our mobile canvassing.

Voter Science was founded because we saw that there has always been a major tech gap in local races, many of which are nonpartisan but in which progressive or center-left candidates benefit from a rich ecosystem of tech resources and data. Voters will be watching how their local officials work in the community to communicate needs and impacts of COVID – some officials will fail the challenge.

Our hope is that by providing affordable, scalable tools to smaller campaigns that aren’t partisan, we can improve the caliber of local leadership to address challenges like this that we have to be prepared to handle in our new future normal.