I imagined the proposal as a test of campaign responsiveness, but I didn't imagine that the campaigns would be quite so unresponsive. Honestly, I was prepared to write two 500 dollar checks, one to the Bruce Tytler for Congress campaign, and one to the Michael Arcuri for Congress campaign.
Almost two weeks ago, in a fit of frustration at the slow pace of the Arcuri and Tytler campaigns, I made a promise. I promised each campaign that, if they could get their campaign web site up by the end of the week, I would write a check for a $500 donation. With the passing of each following week, the size of that donation would go down by 100 dollars until, eventually, it would be reduced to nothing. I made a $500 donation to the Les Roberts campaign for already having its campaign web site up and running.
Lucky, me, I'm not going to have to write two $500 checks to Arcuri and Tytler. In fact, unless Tytler and Arcuri manage to get their web sites up in the next 11 hours, the amount of my promised checks to each campaign will be reduced to $300.
Now, I never had the arrogance to imagine that the Arcuri for Congress and Tytler for Congress campaigns would get their web sites online just to get $500 from little old me. But, I guess I did have hopes that the little bit of drama in my challenge might provoke these two candidates to finally pick up their sluggish pace. Those hopes are diminishing with each passing week.
Honestly, I just don't understand how Michael Arcuri and Bruce Tytler can be so casual about their campaigns. As one of the readers of this blog has pointed out, a campaign for Congress is not the same as a campaign for District Attorney, or for the position of the mayor of a small city - especially not in a year like this, when congressional campaigns are drawing much more attention than usual.
Any time now, Sherwood Boehlert will be announcing whether or not he will be running for re-election this year. Either way, once that announcement is made, attention of voters will be riveted for a crucial time period. Whether a candidate has a campaign web site up during that time could make the difference that brings victory in the Democratic primary, and then, the general election. To be unprepared with a web site at such a time is unimaginable to me.
But that's me. In my imagination, nobody can afford to coast their way into winning a seat in the United States House of Representatives.
I've explained how little expense and how little time it would take for Bruce Tytler or Michael Arcuri to get a basic, solid campaign web site online. I found a web hosting company that charges just $6.95 per month to provide server space to a web site of the kind of size a congressional campaign needs. Since that time, I found another company that charges just $3.95 per month. Really, the costs of having a web page are lower than the costs of having an ordinary telephone line.
So, it's not just the lack of a web site in itself that bothers me about the Bruce Tytler and Michael Arcuri campaigns. The fact that these campaigns have been lacking in such a simple resource for so long makes me wonder what else they're missing. Until I can see a web site from these campaigns, I'll be wondering what's wrong with the Arcuri for Congress and Tytler for Congress campaigns, instead of talking about what's right.
Judging from reader comments here, I won't be the only one.