Dawn Black has been re-elected as Member of Parliament for New Westminster-Coquitlam-Port Moody. Election day was exciting. We knew it was going to be close, and were optimistic but not sure of the outcome until the votes were counted.
I worked at one of several phone banks around the riding. My job all day was to phone people who were identified as supporters, and encourage them to go vote. I answered lots of questions about where is my poll? when is it open? what do I need to take for ID? Can I register at the poll? And I put in requests for a few volunteer drivers to take voters to the polls. I worked in a room full of volunteers with about 10 phones. Some volunteers were phoning specific language groups, other where phoning in general, like me. As the day went on, our phone bank coordinator received updates from our volunteers at the polls, who were keeping track of the voter numbers that had come in, so we know who had voted and who we still needed to come in. Then we phoned those people, some of them 2 or 3 times if we didn't reach them at first. Up until about an hour before the polls closed, we phoned and phoned.
Late in the day, Alex joined me. He had a midterm, and needed to go vote. Then we went out to a polling place to scrutineer the count of the votes. There were other volunteers there from our party. They had spent all day watching, checking numbers, and staying in touch by phone with the phone bank. Each one of us watched a ballot box being opened, then observed the count to make sure everything was done correctly. The elections workers were careful and thorough. When they were finished, one of the volunteers at our site phoned the numbers back to the campaign office, where we were keeping our own tally.
The polls closed at 7pm. By 9pm it was apparent that Dawn had won - by about 1,300 votes. She arrived at the victory party to cheers, hugs and handshakes. The place was packed with happy, tired and relieved supporters. Dawn's husband (who drove people to the polls all day) and her sons and grandchildren (including 5 week old twins) were there. It was a very happy time. Dawn made a victory speech, thanking her election team, volunteers, family and community, and promising to continue to represent ordinary people in Ottawa. The kitchen table has been the motif of the NDP campaign across Canada (as opposed to the boardroom table). It was a kitchen table moment when she spoke to us.
I'm delighted with the outcome in our riding, less so for all of the country. I would have like more NDP wins, but we do have MPs all over Canada this time, which is great. I feel proud to have been part of such an honest, energetic, heart-ful and successful campaign. I am head-over-heels happy that Alex volunteered with me. Watching him watch the ballot count last night was a crowning Mom moment for me. He has helped with campaigns before, but as an adult, he may now participate fully, and it looks like he will.
question: how was election day for you?
mompoet - tired, happy, triumphant