Voter Data Processing

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Computer imageObviously, we have the capability of manipulating most any type of data tables, but because our product list is so complete, we only infrequently get requests for additional data processing on a hourly billable basis.

We recognize that a sophisticated political campaign may occasionally require additional data processing. Time permitting, we will usually try to accommodate any special needs.

Setting the more unusual requests aside, the three most common requests for additional data processing are the following:

  • Append the voter file with permanent Absentee Ballot data
  • Flag voters in your district that match a second list that you furnish
  • Process a local county file that may be more current than what we are using

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Permanent Absentee Ballot Voters

Absentee Ballot voters are viewed by most campaigns as a key ingredient to winning a race. Permanent ABs are designated by the Elections Department, based on their voluntary request for inclusion, as voters who will automatically be sent a paper Absentee Ballot at a set time prior to every election for which they are eligible.

As mentioned elsewhere in this web site, our AB designation is based on whether or not any voter has voted by paper AB in the last twenty-four (24) months. We view this as a more complete and better source of information in AB initiatives.

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Match A Second List

Occasionally, a campaign will obtain a list of people who they believe will be sympathetic to their candidate, but they do not know how many people on the list are actually voters. Clearly, their is little value in expending resources on non-voters.

Lists like this can be matched back to a voter file using either just the address or the address and a last name. Another option is to match on the address, last name and first letter of the first name. Any other, more exhaustive, match criteria usually results in much fewer matches.

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Local County File

There is little conformity in the local production of voter files. Every county seems to have their own way of doing things. Their file formats are almost always different from each other, and, occasionally, I have found that they do not even provide the voter's statewide identification number. They instead include their own county ID number.

Figuring out how to readily process these files into a usable format compatible with Campaign Data's extensive programming code can be a time-consuming, and expensive, proposition.

In addition, a voter quality ranking can also be tricky, depending on the format of the history file provided by each county.

So, we seldom entertain the idea of working on a local county file.