Five candidates pick up garbage to pick up votes

Tuesday, June 29, 2004 | 12:00 a.m. CDT; updated 3:12 p.m. CDT, Wednesday, July 16, 2008

The 25th District Democratic Candidates for the Missouri General Assembly met to pick up trash Sunday evening in hopes of meeting some voters. They also foundbeer cans, car parts, cigarette butts and part of a toilet.

The five candidates met in East Campus for a “Trashegiatto,” a play on the Italian “passegiato,” a social custom where neighbors visit with one another. The event was hosted by local attorney Anna Lingo, who wanted to give the candidates a chance to work together toward something positive and constructive.

“I wanted to show people that this is not a race that is tearing the party apart,” Lingo said. “That this is a group that is able to work together and that regardless of who wins the primary, they will support that person.”

Each was able to bring with them teams of friends, family and supporters, who together were responsible for a street. About 50 neighborhood residents and supporters attended the cleanup.

“One of the things that I got out of it was being able to be on the grounds of the East Campus neighborhood and see what the community looks like and being able to visit with some folks along the route,” candidate D. Duane Dimmitt said.

Candidate Lara Underwood said it was a good chance to talk to people one-on-one.

“It was a lot of fun and there were a lot of people out and they thanked us for helping,” she said.

The candidates gathered back at Lingo’s house for “good old-fashioned” stump speeches and refreshments, candidate Mike Blum said.

“It’s always a benefit to the voters,” he said. “You should expect as a voter to meet your candidate. If a candidate isn’t available for you to meet, then they don’t deserve your vote.”

But the event wasn’t all about the voters. “I think there was a little bit of competition,” Blum joked.

But candidate Russel P. Breyfogle assured that collecting the 25 bags of garbage was all in the spirit of cooperation.

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