People Like To Be Asked

Although I do not agree with much of what he stood for politically, I do find Thomas “Tip” O’Neill to be one of the best sources for good political stories and analogies. He is of course famous for adopting the mantra ‘all politics is local’ but for me a story he used to tell about his first campaign is telling to all candidates in 2012.

When he first ran for the local town council (while still in college if I recall correctly) he and his friends worked the area trying to get votes. The day after the election one of his neighbors, a stereotypical Irish housewife type, told him that she had voted for him even though he did not ask.

O’Neill responded by saying that he’d known her since he was a kid, he’d mowed her lawn and shoveled her walk, she was more or less family so he just assumed she’d vote for him.

She smiled and said “Thomas… people like to be asked”.

It is a lesson every politician who wants to win an election should remember.


Author: PATRICK EDABURN, Assistant Editor

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