Predictably, he laughs. He huffs. He puffs. He stalls.
Now we point out that another candidate has already signed the pledge.
If the other candidate is the major-party opponent, this should be stated loud and clear.
If it's a minor-party or an independent, there's no point in volunteering who it is.
But remember, this is still very bad news for the candidate we are confronting. It's not going to be as frightening or urgent but it still applies the pressure. You have just shown several thousand signatures of people who have said they will only vote for a candidate who supports the position. And you've got another candidate who has signed the pledge. All the targeted candidate needs to think is that there is a "spoiler vote" out there, just enough voters that it could cost the election.
Ask Al Gore about spoiler votes.
The ball is now in the candidate's court.
If he signs, we've got him or her exactly where we want. Like it or not he is aligned with us, at least on the particular legislative matter covered by the pledge.
If he doesn't sign, is setting himself up for a firestorm of bad publicity, hopefully some serious public outrage, and voter backlash. I can see the local headlines now . . .
[Name of candidate] Refuses To Sign Pledge Protecting Social Security
It's definitely going to get his attention, especially if we work the media effectively. If the media won't cover it, we've still got the streets, the internet, and word-of-mouth. We can definitely cause some pain.
We Facebook it. We Twitter it. We Tumbler it.
We call it into radio talk shows. We get ourselves on TV.
We carry signs at rallies, in mall parking lots, on busy street corners . . .
Millionaire Senator [name] won't sign pledge for fair taxes on the rich!
Congressman [name] won't pledge support for affordable health care!