Day 238: 1/13/20

Today is quite a busy day for But Their Emails! Look for Cory Booker’s farewell at 8 PM and the debate stage summary at 8:55 PM.

On Monday, Michael Bennet thanked Cory Booker, Andrew Yang turned 45, and Elizabeth Warren and Pete Buttigieg offered me stickers.


For all new readers: Welcome! I am currently on the mailing lists of Joe Biden and Donald Trump, though I have previously been on the mailing lists of 28 Democratic candidates! This blog breaks down recent emails with charts and excerpts. If you already know all of this, feel free to skip to the next chart!

It took some time for the Trump emails to kick in, so I started officially tracking his list on July 7. I have been tracking Biden’s for longer, but I will start comparing them as of July 7. All of these emails are going to a new email, and I have not donated, filled out surveys, signed petitions, or otherwise interacted with either candidate’s emails.

The rules I try to follow for the various categories are laid out in The Framework.

I will forgive Pete Buttigieg for the 9.

Pete Buttigieg sent 9 donor emails on Monday. However, combined with Sunday’s bizarre lopsided emails, where 3 non-donor emails did not have a corresponding donor email, the extra 3 donor emails on Monday matched with those Sunday orphans. I think the 9 count was the result of an email glitch either on his end or mine, with my email forwarding system, and he actually only sent 6 emails on Monday, with 3 Sunday emails arriving late.

Still leads the field for most emails sent. 6 in a day is almost as ridiculous as 9 in a day.

Amy Klobuchar and Elizabeth Warren both sent out only 4 emails in a day, in contrast, while Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders, and Andrew Yang sent out 3.

Tom Steyer was the only candidate looking outside his campaign.

Cory Booker dropped out of the race on Monday with an email and a video message, so he was counted as a “watch” ask, while Michael Bennet penned a touching farewell to Booker.

Look at those smiles

I really like the glimpses of the friendships between various candidates. Booker seemed to be at the epicenter of many of them, with his email to Kamala, Bennet’s email to him, and Andrew Yang’s consistent joy at seeing Booker around. The more I see of Booker, the more I believe he really is one of those rare, genuinely positive people that cynics don’t believe can actually really exist.

(They can. It’s not always fake. It’s just hard to believe.)

Tom Steyer sent me a petition demanding Trump immediately help Puerto Rico in the wake of their recent earthquakes. However, knowing Trump all too well, he also included links for relief groups that I could donate directly to. He also sent an email with some messages from well-wishers and invited me to write to Steyer before the debate.

Andrew Yang turned 45 on Monday, and he sent an email inviting me to sign his birthday card. He also asked me to donate to his campaign, with suggested donation amounts ending in $0.45 in honor of the birthday boy.

If you’ve got a gimmick, go for it.

Despite the extra 45 cents, Yang finished up the day with an email personally pleading for donations. His fundraising deadline of $2 million by midnight on January 14 was not looking good. It might be the first goal the Yang Gang ever misses (if you don’t count the time he adjusted deadlines so they didn’t miss a goal last year).

Elizabeth Warren offered a sticker to first-time donors only.

I'm voting for Warren
Wouldn’t this be more likely if I were already a donor?

She was touting the early voting beginning on Friday, but I was very confused: Bernie Sanders said people were already casting votes. I feel like maybe Warren is talking about early voting, while Sanders is counting absentee ballots, but as neither of them are giving specifics, I honestly don’t know who has already started voting, if anyone. I couldn’t find this information easily either. It does lead to a nicely conflicted primary.

Pete Buttigieg was also offering a sticker, but he was doing some A/B testing in his email. The text of the emails was the same, but the picture of the included sticker was very different.

An informal Twitter poll I conducted shows the preference split almost exactly 50/50: 49% of 95 votes liked the cartoony version, 48% liked the photo, and 2% said neither, though one of those Neither votes said they actually liked the photo but got their hand knocked just as they were clicking. (I did not allow “both” as an option, though I suspect it’s the winning choice.)

Not to be outdone, Warren plugged her winter merch again.

Bailey in a Team Warren scarf
Good boy!
The debate stole the show, as expected.

The upcoming debate was the focus of many emails, with a lot of pre-debate fundraising goals (from Amy Klobuchar, Elizabeth Warren, and Pete Buttigieg) and pre-debate surveys (from Bernie Sanders). Pete Buttigieg pointed out that he’s the last candidate on the debate stage who isn’t a millionaire or a billionaire… but then he did the unthinkable.

Highlighting is mine

Buttigieg. Please. Lisa, Medha, Cecilia, Zahwa, and Bridget (Buttigieg’s email team), please. Castro dropped out (and blocked me on Twitter!). Please don’t pick up the mantle of humbly asking. Let Michael Bennet keep that word. You don’t need it.

Please. I’m humbly asking you to leave that word alone.

The color drains away and this chart grows sad.

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