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Political Signs on Public Property

Original post made by Voter on Feb 1, 2008

During the last election, my Republican candidate political signs were confiscated by a Palo Alto code enforcement officer, who claimed that they were on public property, since they were posted in front of my house between the sidewalk and the street.
As I drive around Palo Alto this week, I see dozens of Democratic candidate political signs in the same "public property" and yet they are not subject to confiscation by Palo Alto code enforcement officers.
Why is there a difference?

Comments (11)

Posted by Neighbor, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Feb 1, 2008 at 11:59 am

The Code Enforcement officer will only remove illegally posted signs if they get a lot of complaints. Don't feel bad I've had my Democratic signs removed during past elections. And, you will be happy to know, I walked past many Mitt Romney signs this morning.

Posted by Danny, a resident of Crescent Park
on Feb 1, 2008 at 12:12 pm

Many of the police I know are Republicans, so I highly doubt removal of candidate signs has anything to do with the political party.

Posted by GMC, a resident of Midtown
on Feb 1, 2008 at 12:44 pm

Imagine all the greenhouse gases and pollution created by making all of these signs and then chucking them in trash or recycling after the election. Seriously- I'm not saying ban the signs, but just think about it - in every town, in every state, hundreds of thousands of these things created, and it probably doesn't make a huge difference in the election.

Posted by Resident, a resident of Crescent Park
on Feb 3, 2008 at 9:56 am

Let's get real. There are many Democrat signs all over the place in very public, well traveled areas. The police would have to be blind to not see them. Get rid of them now.

Posted by palo alto mom, a resident of Crescent Park
on Feb 3, 2008 at 10:26 am

The police (and the taxpayers) should not be responsible for removing the signs, Republican or Democrat. The campaign offices should send their staff out to remove them off public property (There are even signs on school grounds at Walter Hays.

Posted by paly parent, a resident of Professorville
on Feb 3, 2008 at 2:40 pm

thank you to whoever cleaned up the hundreds of signs along Middlefield!

Posted by perspective, a resident of Midtown
on Feb 3, 2008 at 2:44 pm

I am with GMC...who really votes based on the number of signs they see? Are there really such sheep who can't just figure out the issues and what they want for themselves? Do we really want people to vote who can only make decisions in this way?

Posted by paly parent, a resident of Professorville
on Feb 4, 2008 at 2:04 pm

People really are influenced by signs, especially if someone you respect is supporting a candidate or cause. There are also the sheep who will just follow the masses...

Posted by Terry, a resident of Midtown
on Feb 4, 2008 at 2:32 pm

In local elections, for sure, signs are very big. You see it in PA, but all over the country. Since name recognition is usually low and the idea that "my neighbors" publicly support someone has a big impact. In many places, lawn signs are the biggest campaign expenditure for a local campaign.

I'm less sure how much they move the needle for more visible campaigns.

Posted by Palo Alto Resident, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Feb 5, 2008 at 4:08 am

All I can say is, signs in my neighborhood and local driving areas do NOT influence whom *I* choose to vote for. Never have, and most likely never will. All they tell me is who my neighbors like - but *I* am not my neighbors, nor am I close friends with my neighbors (though we are perfectly cordial.) :)

Posted by Resident, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Feb 5, 2008 at 8:04 am

Signs are more likely to cause disharmony between neighbors rather than influence neighbors to vote like minded.

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