Wednesday, August 12, 2020

Santiago and the vote Builder data.

         In the brouhaha over the primary election for the PA 22nd district State house district, candidate Enid Santiago is claiming data discrepancies thru what her campaign has gleaned on what is known as the "Vote Builder" data base.

          Vote Builder is a licensed product of the Democratic House Campaign caucus. It has the purpose of helping identify voters by their demographic in the precincts of specific races. For example, when Mark Pinsley ran against Republican incumbent Senator Pat Browne in 2018 his campaign had access to that info to compile campaign flyer mailing lists and target specific voters on specific issues.

           It is a good idea in principle, but in practice, it has flaws out the kazoo. It contains data errors such as multiple entries for one voter, having precincts in the wrong house districts, misspelling voters' names, and even having them listed as the wrong party. I could go on and on with why it is not a reliable source, but it does function as a good basic source for a voters' address, party affiliation, and age, so it's a good place to start. 

           But Vote Builder is only supposed to be used by those with specific permission to access it. Enid Santiago did not get that permission, nor does she have it. Incumbent Pete Schweyer's campaign had that access, the HDCC as a rule does not let Vote Builder be used against incumbents.

            So how did Santiago get that info? An unscrupulous political operative who helped direct Mark Pinsley's failed Senate race used their access to the data and assisted Santiago. 

             So not only is Santiago using  faulty, inaccurate data that she had no legal right to, she obtained it in an underhanded deceitful way.

             Not exactly the kind of honesty and virtue that voters need in their candidates. If you're willing to play fast and loose with rules and throw any ethical behavior to the wayside to try and win an election, I have to question where the moral compass is pointing, as well as just whose interests would be getting served if elected.  I know who gave Santiago the info and how they accessed it. Their actions are on their conscience, and any future consequences are theirs to deal with.

            One thing I know for sure in politics, is the people who get screwed over have long memories.

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