This is a question that has been debated for years and it’s one of the biggest questions on the minds of politicians. While some people will argue that this is not true, others are willing to go as far as saying that politics should be banned entirely. So, is political campaigning soliciting?
Political campaign, as defined by the Oxford Dictionary, “is a political process directed at influencing public opinion and/or behavior.” This should not be confused with solicitation: “the act of persuading someone to buy something or contribute money.” In other words, when you are asking your constituents for their vote in an upcoming election. Political campaigning is part of the democratic process and is not soliciting.
What is soliciting according to the law
According to the legal code of many different countries, soliciting is “the act of persuading someone to buy something or contribute money.”
In America for example, it can be illegal to solicit goods and services without a permit. In other words, if you are going door-to-door in order to sell subscriptions or products from your company, you need some form of permission that proves what you’re doing is legitimate. If not, there could be consequences like fines (especially if this happens often) and even jail time. It’s important to know the law before breaking it and getting into any kind of trouble with authorities!
When does solicitation becomes illegal?
If you are repeatedly approaching someone with a sales pitch, and they have made clear that they don’t want anything to do with what you are selling, then this is considered a solicitation. It’s not just about how many times someone says no- it’s about how often they cannot escape you.
The problem with this is that many people who want to sell something take advantage of the fact that there are so many different ways of contacting someone these days- like by email, social media, or even text message.
This means it can be hard for a person to know what’s okay and when to say no without feeling bad about themselves or making excuses because everyone else does it. But not everyone has the same situation as them, which makes their decision valid in one way but wrong in another. This goes back to the idea of personal boundaries: each individual must decide where those lines will be drawn for them personally and honor those decisions from then on out (regardless if others disagree with it).
Why political campaigning is not soliciting?
Political campaigning is a process for influencing public opinion and/or behavior. This should not be confused with soliciting, which is “the act of persuading someone to buy something or contribute money.”
Campaigning does not involve asking people to give you financial contributions, but rather involves getting out into the world and sharing your ideas about how society could be improved through education programs, help for those in poverty, or lower taxes on small businesses.
This type of activity also includes signing petitions that call attention to issues like human rights violations around the globe- all without any expectation of being paid for it at all! Campaigns are usually participatory too: they can include door knocking (to find out what voters’ concerns are), holding rallies, and more.
When someone chooses to run for office in a campaign, they are often judged on the merit of their ideas, not how much money they have raised or spent.
How to avoid being accused of solicitation during political campaigning
To avoid being accused of solicitation during political campaigning, you should:
Make sure your message is one of persuasion- not harassment. Campaigning usually involves encouraging people to be informed about the issues, taking action on those ideas by voting or volunteering in their community, and researching where candidates stand on these same topics. Do build campaign around persuasion and not harassment.
Don’t ask for money! If someone offers up a contribution because they want to help out with what you’re doing (versus being pressured into it), that’s great but don’t get pushy about it. It can make them feel like they are obligated to give something in return, which only makes things worse rather than better between the two parties.
To avoid being accused of solicitation during political campaigning, you shouldn’t:
Use words that sound like you’re begging for cash (e.g., “give me money,” “help out with this contribution”), and don’t pressure people into contributing when they express reluctance about donating their hard-earned money to your cause. Even if someone offers up their own donation without being pressured by you, don’t ask them repeatedly for more than one time at the most during any type of encounter between the two parties.
Donations should be entirely voluntary! It doesn’t matter how badly your needs are met as long as nobody felt forced into contributing.
Be mindful of the state and local laws that govern solicitation.
Many states have laws that restrict the times and places you can solicit contributions.
In Illinois, for example, it is illegal to solicit contributions on behalf of a non-profit organization or another charitable purpose at events where you don’t have a permit from your town’s government.
Keep a log of all contacts made during your campaign, including the date, time, place, and person contacted
In order to be successful in a political campaign, one must make contact with many different people. This is usually done by knocking on doors or calling them up – though it can also include social media as well. To keep track of these contacts, it’s best to have a logbook where you document the date and time that you called someone or knocked on their door for the first time; what they said when asked if they would like an opportunity to volunteer for your campaign; any other notes about conversations had during this call/knock (for example number of children living at home).
Did you get a chance to talk with the person? Is this something they would consider, or not at all? What did they say when asked if they were interested in volunteering for your candidate ?” These are some of the things that should go into the logbook as well – anything and everything related to contact information while campaigning is fair game! If someone says no, don’t push them further. Politely thank them for their time and cross them off of your list.
Avoid giving away free items
People may feel obligated to buy something from you if they take it without paying for it
You should avoid giving away free items during Campaigning as people will see you as a charity and not an actual political campaign.
If you are trying to build up your supporter numbers, then this is definitely something that should be avoided at all costs. You want the recipient of the gift to see themselves as more than just another number- they’re supporting your movement! To do so, stay away from giving away free items during Campaigning and focus on things like personalized messages or other incentives for them to join in with their own money.
The law does not consider political campaigning as soliciting so long as it doesn’t involve asking for money. This is why the activity of campaign volunteers going door-to-door to canvass and ask voters about their opinions on various issues or candidates is not considered a solicitation, but rather communication with potential voters. To avoid accusations that your activities constitute illegal solicitations, be mindful of state and local laws governing what constitutes a violation of solicitation statutes. It may also help you keep track of all contacts made during your campaign by keeping a log, including date, time, place contacted (whether in person or over the phone), and name/contact information obtained from the contactee.
Click here to check The Victory Lab: The Secret Science of Winning Campaigns Kindle Edition