Voices’ Blog

Hanging on to Every Word

Posted:  -  By: Voices for VA's Kids

Voices’ Senior Policy Analyst for early care and education Emily Griffey holds candidates accountable for how they talk about children’s policies, and makes suggestions about how you can, too.

Surely I wasn’t the only one cheering in my living room every time a speaker during the conventions said early childhood, Head Start or Medicaid, right? Based on the looks I was getting from my husband on the other side of the couch, and the grumbles to turn the channel to CSPAN again, I doubt everyone is just like me, hanging on to every word these candidates say waiting for those magic words to be spoken.

Luckily we have reporters and news outlets that are also paying attention to every word and digesting the rhetoric for us, like in this convention word cloud from the New York Times above.  When I saw this on the www.nytimes.com website this morning, I immediately went to those words I had been cheering for- education, health and families. I spent a few minutes clicking on each circle to see which speakers had mentioned those words and a little more detail at what they actually said. Did they say- “I talked to families” or “I want to keep families strong and supported”?

This word cloud is just one example of how advocates can track what candidates are saying about kids’ issues in the election. This example specifically highlights where the major parties’ platforms stand. But beyond the party rhetoric of the last few weeks, we have candidates representing Virginia right in our communities and we have the chance to ask them and hear from them directly- where do you stand on kids’ issues?

If there are others out there, like me, hanging on to every word during the conventions, debates and television interviews, I hope that you can join me in sharing your thoughts with us here. Post to our Facebook page or tweet us.

And if you get tired of cheering just to your TV, join us for our election rally, Step Up for Kids in Richmond on September 21st.

We hope to hear more from you, and what you hear about kids’ issues, in the campaign.

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