Ryan invites feminist to phone for Romney — oops!

By Kit-Bacon Gressitt

Last Tuesday, one day after the worst of Hurricane Sandy and one week before Election Day, I received an email from Republican VP candidate Rep. Paul Ryan, inviting me to phone bank for the Romney-Ryan ticket.

Me! The feminist who “won’t vote for Romney or anyone who embraces a fundamentalist interpretation of women’s rights and roles.” A liberal woman phone banking for Romney? Not!

After returning my bottom jaw to a respectable distance from the upper, I enjoyed a moment of wonderment at the thought that the Romney-Ryan campaign might be naïve enough to assume every person who signs up for their campaign emails is a supporter.

Silly boys. Or perhaps it’s desperation in the wake of Hurricane Sandy and the growing awareness of indications that Ryan would like to slash FEMA’s budget and Romney would like to privatize the agency — wouldn’t that make a mess of recovery efforts!

Regardless, I’m from the South, and one mustn’t spurn a social engagement out of spite, so I emailed Rep. Ryan the following tactful response:

Dear Rep. Ryan,

Thank you for the lovely invitation! I’m honored to be included, and I would be delighted to make get-out-the-vote calls, although I suspect my phone script might differ from yours. Nonetheless, I’ll be there with bells on — figuratively speaking 


Kit-Bacon Gressitt

Then I registered online as a volunteer, received an immediate affirmative response from Romney’s campaign, logged onto the campaign’s phone-bank system, and started calling — the apparent goal, to encourage voters in Nevada to vote early.

The first phone number went to a FAX machine. That was a tad disappointing. I coded it as a wrong number and went on to the next.

The second number appeared to be for either a lesbian couple or maybe two sisters (same last name). Given the source of the phone list, I was curious to find out, but no one picked up, so I said in my most cheery phone voice:

“Hi, this is Kit-Bacon. I’m calling to encourage you to get out and vote for President Obama next Tuesday. Thank you for your vote — goodbye!”

The third phone number was for a Gregory, but the woman who answered was quite clear that no Gregory lived there and that she had already told this to all the other people phoning for him. I apologized profusely, despite knowing full well that the error was Romney and Ryan’s, because that’s what my dear, darling mother taught us to do. However, I let the woman know that I was calling at the Romney campaign’s behest; I’d rather she be perturbed with him than Obama.

I understood her annoyance, but it was really quite awkward for me to have to clean up Romney’s mess, something I suspect the entire nation — including hurricane victims — would be doing for years, if he were to be elected.

But back to the phoning, which was proving to be less fun than I had anticipated. I decided to make one more call to see if someone might be available to actually chat about the candidates.

Alas, Cindy was not home. I forsook the script, left her a jouncy message about voting for President Obama and logged off the phone system.

I’ll make some more calls before the election, certainly not during the dinner hours, but still, later in the day when folks are likely to be home — unless Rep. Ryan rescinds my invitation. He has committed worse faux pas than that (for example, this), so it certainly is possible. It might give me the vapors, though.

In the meantime, if you have an unseemly desire to toy with the Romney-Ryan campaign, you can click here to volunteer. It’s a fairly facile online system — just ignore the phone script — and I’m sure the Democrats will want to thank Gov. Romney kindly for the use of his voter list.

Romney might be an elitist, but at least he learned to share in Kindergarten. Not!


UPDATE 10:00 a.m. 03 Nov 2012: Just received my second invitation — I was never this popular in high school!

















Crossposted at San Diego Gay & Lesbian News, San Diego Free Press and Ocean Beach Rag.

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9 replies
    • kbgressitt says:

      I’m not sure how FB works, being from a lost generation, but I think you just have to click on the Facebook thingy at the bottom of the column?…

  1. Patty Campbell says:


    Absolutelly wonderful! Did you ever get anybody who would dialog with you? I’m dying to know what the Romney idiots said when they found out what you were doing. Only you would have had the cojones.

    Patty Campbell

  2. Millie says:

    This is the best commentary on the upcoming election I’ve heard so far.

    So pleased I voted already with an absentee ballot. Every election email I delete without reading now. My decision was made 4 years ago the first time I voted for Obama. I said it then and I say it now…if we don’t back him for 8 years and back the Democrat who follows him, we can’t recover from the devasting effects of damage to the Constitution and to women’s rights that began when Clinton left office.

    Now there’s a man who appreciated women! So it was for the wrong reasons, so what?

  3. Kim says:

    Me again K-B, I should clarify, you need a thumbs up thingie on your blog. I did share to FB, and you got quite a few! I think you planted a few seeds. Maybe a few more folks out there with (as Patty said) cojones like yours will take a whack at the Right wing Whack-Os!

  4. Jack says:

    You know, I am going to have to stop commenting in the early morning hours after a long day. Although I firmly believe in the veracity of the remarks, they tend to be more long winded at sometimes more strident than they should. It is difficult to counter the clever and deviously one sided remarks that I think are presented without waxing on with explanations of why. I am not as good as K-B with the short pithy remarks.
    However, as Tues. approaches, for all that have not cast their ballots and even for those who have, merely peruse the details of Obamacare and the Dodd-Franks bill, both Democratic only bills, and it is easy to see the job destroying, over regulating, economy busting, taxing the middle class and poor and, yes, the subversive and sometimes overt war on the wellbeing and economic life of women. For those who wish to live under a socialistic, government oriented and regulated world heading for the same fate as Greece, Spain and France, etc. (think California), just keep voting Democratic without relying on the issues and reality. Perhaps we can get to a place where things like the cooperation about Hurricane Sandy between Chris Christi and Obama is more commonplace than rare, but until there is reaching across the aisle and the offer of leadership and cooperation on Capitol Hill combined with a knowledge of how business and the economy works and the world is run, it won’t happen. Unfortunately for us all, despite his oratorical skills, Obama has no skills of governance and has proven that he is the wrong person in the wrong place and unprepared for the job of POTUS. Perhaps some other time.
    Have a great day.

  5. Nancy says:

    If Jack’s harange weren’t so funny, I might feel an urge to comment, but it rather stands alone in all its angry glory. Thanks K-B, for a great idea carried out well! This campaign has been so awful we need more moments like yours! As Lila said — You go, Girl!