I went campaigning. I went from door-to-door. I rang door bells and knocked on doors. I did not get much face time with people. Only about 5 in 70 actually answered their door.
I learned that "book rate" for door-to-door is 50 houses per hour in an urban area. I was a lot slower than that. I knocked out about 35 per hour.
I learned that the electorate is pretty fed up with all politicians. They want somebody who will DO something. They are sick of guys like Holder who incite racial tensions (not in his job description) but never indited a single one of the Banksters who brought the world economy to the brink (which is in his job description).
I learned that people like it when you notice their Japanese Maples, the fact that they landscaped with Red, White and Blue flowers and that their pooch is friendly.
They also like it when you notice that they have one of these mounted to their house.
Demographically, Michigan's 71st district looks much like Michigan as a state. One corner of the district has an inner city core that is ringed with affluent suburbs. That zipcode has about 1300 people per square mile. Then the population density slowly thins out to rural areas with 50 people/square mile.
Doing the math suggests that it will take at least 8 man-weeks to cover the one, highly populated zip code.
The compelling message
The incumbent belongs to "the other party".
I got to meet the new guy's campaign manager. I asked him for his compelling sales message....why should anybody vote for the new guy over the old one? His answer was delivered in political-wonk speak "My guy is more fiscally responsible." It is a solid message but the delivery is underwhelming.
The new guy needs to differentiate himself by telling voters that not only does he respect their private property, but that he defended it for 15 years as a member of the United States Army. Part of respecting their private property involves not taxing it for frivolous purposes. He needs to tell them that not only does he respect their rights to private property, he respects all of their other constitutional rights.