Virginia Enthusiasm Watch: Romney Making a Play for Northern Virginia

Voter enthusiasm is tracked in many forms. Financial donations, poll responses, and crowd sizes are just a few of the many ways election watchers get a sense about one candidate’s relative performance versus the other.  The local NBC 4 station in Washington DC which extends deep into Democrat heavy Northern Virginia took some time to gauge another measure of enthusiasm, yard signs:

Romney Campaign More Aggressive With Yard Signs in Virginia

One presidential candidate seems to have more campaign yard signs in Virginia, News4 Northern Virginia Bureau Chief Julie Carey reports. As Election Day approaches, more campaign yard signs are springing up for both presidential candidates, though one candidate seems to have a lot more signs out there than the other.

Flying off the shelves

While yard signs certainly reflect a homeowner’s enthusiasm, the Mitt Romney and Obama campaigns take a somewhat different view of their value in the overall get out the vote effort. In a Romney campaign office in Arlington, keeping a well-stocked supply of yard signs is a volunteer’s duties. “We have people coming in every day off the street asking for signs, calling in for signs, and as soon as they come in, they fly off the shelves,” Romney campaign volunteer Ken Nunnenkamp said. “People love the signs so we make them as fast as we can.”

Playing on Obama’s turf

Even in Democrat heavy areas like Alexandria and Falls Church, where you expect to see Obama signs, Romney signs are right next to them. While Romney supporters suggest the signs are indicative of growing support, the Obama campaign has a slightly different philosophy about the importance of yard signs. As they put it, signs don’t vote.

Late start for Obama

Until recently, Obama yard signs could be purchased online. So could Romney signs, but Republican campaign offices also have been handing them out for free for months. An Obama campaign office in Falls Church just got its first batch of 1,500 yard signs to give out for free, but volunteers there said when they hand over a sign, it’s also a chance to pull in a new recruit.

Unprecedented ground game

But the Romney campaign said its signs are visible proof of what they say is an unprecedented GOP get out the vote effort. “It’s the largest GOP get out the vote effort in Virginia history,” Romney’s Virginia Communications Director Curt Cashour said. “We’ve made almost three-and-a-half million contacts so far, and it’s only going to grow between now and the election.”

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