There is nothing more important during an election cycle than ensuring that voters are fully informed of the background, campaign positions, and the pros and cons of supporting either a candidate or ballot initiative.
All public servants, regardless of political persuasion, should embrace this attitude.
Sadly, that is not always the case as some political elements prefer voters to be uninformed while they pursue sometimes hidden agendas through groups like ALEC (The American Legislative Exchange Council) that ultimately shape legislative programs, legislators, and candidates behind the scenes by providing double-speak and disinformation talking points to their members in order to con the citizens they pretend to serve.
|Attend the program “ALEC: Destroying Our Democracy State by State” on December 3 @ 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm, sponsored by The Arizona Ground Game. LOCATION: San Pedro Chapel, 5230 E Ft Lowell Rd, Tucson, AZ 85712. For details visit https://bit.ly/2qvdgUF|
One organization, The Arizona Ground Game (TAGG), was formed soon after the election of Donald Trump. TAGG wanted to remedy this dumbing down of the state’s populace. The Arizona Ground Game’s non-partisan goal is to adopt a neighborhood-by-neighborhood strategy of fully informing everyone of current public-policy issues and ballot initiatives (national, state, and local) and all ballot initiatives.
Tamar Rala Kreiswirth of The Arizona Ground Game graciously took the time to speak with the Blog For Arizona to discuss the organization’s purpose and goals for the future.
The questions and her responses are below.
- Please describe the purpose and history of The Arizona Ground Game.
“ We want consistent desert-roots action dedicated to building an informed, engaged citizenry. Our neighborhood volunteers focus on educating citizens to understand completely the community issues that affect our lives & how the resolution of these issues is directly linked to the actions of elected officials.”
“We are non-partisan, and will not endorse any candidate. Instead, we focus on issues.”
“The majority of us are women, who have a history of pursuing protections for public education, women’s rights, equity, the environment, voting rights, immigration and much more.”
“Our efforts started after Trump was elected. Our group analyzed what worked and what didn’t. We were dismayed by the frenzy of what seemed to us to be counterproductive efforts to get out the vote. We came up with a mathematically and geographically based process that is the basis for the TAGG approach.”
- With regards to state and local politics, what are the three most important goals of The Arizona Ground Game?
“1) To educate the public about policies that affect all of us in Arizona, to teach about how the legislature works, and to empower people about how to be more actively involved in community advocacy.”
“2) To promote active citizenship by engaging voters with workshops that are fun and that ‘builds community’ by bringing neighbors together. Arizonans are not accustomed to someone knocking on our doors and saying ‘I am your neighbor.’ TAGG is about building these connections.”
“3) Fostering the understanding that every issue – like universal preschool, or access to health care, or clean air – is affected by someone that is elected to office. Our hope and belief are that when the voting public is better informed of these connections, we will elect better leaders.”
- Please describe the qualitative and quantitative infrastructure of The Arizona Ground Game.
“We started out with a robust group of community members. We have a Steering Committee that includes Cartography, Training, Treasurer & Hospitality. We have someone who organizes our monthly forums and outreach to organizations. We have a great website chock-full of info. Our goals include reaching out to other communities outside Tucson. We hold forums discussing important issues..promoting the concept that ‘we’ all have the power to create a better community. We believe that this includes interacting with our neighbors, encouraging active citizenship resulting in an informed vote. Most voters, especially Independent voters, are not swayed with one-touch. How has someone running for office affected their lives? You need to have a continual outreach, not just once an election cycle.”
- With regards to the 2020 elections, what are at least three priorities The Arizona Ground Game will be pursuing?
“1) To continue the broad outreach but be more targeted and more strategic about how we find organizations to work with that are ready to put sneakers on the ground.”
“2) We will be holding larger forums though, less often, and would like to organize the forums together with community partners. Then, in lieu of our monthly forums, we will hold workshops.”
“3) We really wish that our videos were more polished and better produced. But, given our limited resources, at least our videos are available to those people that were unable to attend the Forum.”
- With regards to ALEC, please explain what are at least two facts The Arizona Ground Game wants to educate Arizonans about at the TAGG Forum?
“Who and what they (ALEC) are; who funds them and who supports them. Second, we present to those who will attend, the scope and outreach of ALEC’s agenda; creating legislation to be copied and pasted around the country. There will be a TAGG forum about ALEC to be held on Tuesday, December 3 at Fort Lowell Chapel in Tucson from 6:30 to 8:00 p.m.”
- Is there anything about The Arizona Ground Game that you would like to discuss not mentioned in the first six questions?
“If you live in AZ and want to build neighborhood networks of volunteers to help inform voters, please contact us. Our steering committee is dedicated to making sure everyone is informed. One of our top priorities is that Arizona is a place where public education is fully funded. We all believe that a high quality, fully funded public education system is tantamount to our young Democracy. Most of our TAGG Team have historically been involved in GOTV, but not all of us and the new volunteers bring us hope! We want everyone to work together to elect dynamic, intelligent leaders and to know the methods to hold them (public servants) accountable.”
The mission of The Arizona Ground Game should be the objective of any civic-minded group or individual; to fully inform the people of the governing options before them.
Organizations that do not share this goal and pursue propaganda disinformation to shield their real agendas should be shunned and exposed for the frauds they are.
For more information on The Arizona Ground Game, please click on their website here.