Is Kendrick Meek's petition gathering effort faltering?
Democratic U.S. Senate frontrunner Kendrick Meek made a big deal about his campaign's unprecedented push to qualify for the ballot by gathering 112,476 petitions - an ambitious and potentially formidable vehicle for organizing. So it's a little surprising that the Division of Elections so far has verified fewer than 11,000 signatures for Meek. The deadline is March 29, and falling short would be more than a bit embarrassing.
Nothing to worry about, said campaign manager Abe Dyk. "There has been a huge data entry back log in our campaign,'' he said, noting that the campaign uses much of the data gathered in the petition drives to track and organize volunteers and supporters. "We need to go through each petition and pull that inforomation out and put it into a data base."
Dyk estimated that the campaign has gathered more than half of the required signatures, but has yet to turn them in to elections officials.
In the Panhalde yesterday, one supporter in the crowd of 14 who showed up to see Meek reportedely presented him with 2,000 petitions.