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May 30 Newsletter

Posted on May 29, 2020

What Will You Do This Week?

Call for Joe Biden on Tuesdays through July 14

Call PA Dems to Vote on Primary Day June 2

Pick a Time to Oust Susan Collins

Three Days Left for PA
Get every voter’s vote in on June 2
Next Four Days Only
Last Sunday, with no time to spare, more than 45 volunteers helped launch the PA Virtual Phone Bank. While the campaign will last through the November election, the first big push for the phone bank is the primary on June 2.

The online launch featured Colleen McCarthy, Assistant Field Director for Swing Left National; Andrea Koplove, the queen of Turn PA Blue; and our own Rebecca Riccio. Rebecca — a force when speaking about the importance of getting involved and what is at stake in the election — is working on a video to help rally phone bankers.

Launch participants segued seamlessly into a PA Dems’ Day of Action, which made 120,000 calls thanks to the efforts of many grassroots groups in and out of state. The phone bank was the first of many to remind Pennsylvanians to request and/or submit their mail-in ballots.

Now that we’ve launched the campaign, it’s time get on board.
Get on the line at these Massachusetts-based
PA Vote by Mail & Ballot Chase Phone Banks:

On Saturday, May 30 @ 10:00 am – 12:00 pm
On Saturday, May 30 @ 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm
On Sunday, May 31 @ 3:30 pm -5:00 pm
On Tuesday, June 2 @ 4:30 pm – 6:00 pm

Check this out!
Rally for Maine with Joe Biden
Join this live-streamed rally on Sunday @ 1:00

Joe Biden Greets Crowd
Unity for Biden = Unity for the Country
Get a Head Start
Normally, Swing Left doesn’t dive in before a primary is over, but these times can’t be described as “normal.” With Biden as the presumptive nominee, we can’t wait to dive into the work we’ve all been waiting for since November, 2016.

While Democrats may have supported other primary candidates , now we must unify. The only way to stop a second Trump term is for all of us to stand behind and vote for Joe Biden. Our support for Biden over the next five months will determine history for our country and planet.

Sign in and join
Swing Left Greater Boston for Biden
to keep up with our ever-growing initiatives

Make calls to likely Biden supporters
at recurring Saturday afternoon phone banks. These are friendly calls to supporters to check in and see how they are doing. We hope to help them feel connected to the campaign and plant the seeds for the strong volunteer base we need heading into the fall. (Honestly, these calls are a pleasure to make. Plus you’ll get all sorts of unsolicited opinions on running mate selection.)

Mark your calendars for the next
Monthly Swing Left Greater Boston for Biden Team Meeting
on Saturday, June 6

Trump says Republicans can't win if...
Vote by mail can make or break this election
The One Time We Can Agree with Trump (Sort Of …)
Back in March, Trump took to the airwaves, claiming that if the country adopted universal vote-by-mail, same-day registration, and early voting, “You’d never have a Republican elected in this country again.”

There are already examples of the power of vote-by-mail elections. Lisa Karofsky, who just won a seat on the Wisconsin Supreme Court, received 10% more mail-in votes than her opponent. The New York Times suggests this take-away: Democratic voters are more likely than Republicans to request and return absentee ballots.(Remember how we said, “Sort of”? Some experts disagree with this statement. No surprise.)

Democratic success now depends on two things: targeting and connecting with the right people (hence our early phone banks that simply ask what people think) and urging them to vote by mail. To accomplish these goals, we’re leveraging our relationships with organizations across super states and scaling up our ability to send postcards and letters, make calls, and text.

Be part of the ramp up:
Find the action that lets you make a difference for state- and country-wide Democratic victories.

Oregon Voter Pamphlet
Since adopting vote-by-mail, Oregon consistently ranks as a national leader in voter turnout.
Nuts and Bolts of Vote By Mail
Elections since the COVID-19 lockdown set the scene for long (and dangerous) lines, confused shifts to vote by mail (VBM), and partisan conflict. VBM may be the best route to safe, universal voting, but logistics, money, and politics set high hurdles.

Logistics: Consider VBM requirements for printing special envelopes, to-be-defined instructions, and district-specific ballots. Bear in mind the need to educate voters about options, deadlines, and VBM security.

: Governments will have to pay to print and mail ballots and to cover the salaries of employees who will prepare, manage, and then count the ballots. (Note that changes to in-person voting may mitigate some of these costs.)

Even though there might be no partisan advantage to VBM, there are ugly partisan debates about how — and whether — to allow VBM. Local decisions about the VBM process have huge consequences: When a judge in Wisconsin ordered the inclusion of ballots postmarked on election day, 79,000 more votes came into play. Meanwhile, Conservatives are fighting viciously to block VBM; simultaneously, they are spending millions to mail out pre-stamped VBM applications.

Currently, only 10.5% of the electorate is registered as a “permanent absentee voter.” Of those VBMers, 53% are European/White, but only 3% are African American. Participation by age group goes up steadily, with 18-24 year olds at 9% and 65+ year olds at 30%.

Clearly, VBM has room — and a mandate — to grow.

Activist organizations have their work cut out for them. They must keep apace with the competition, keep abreast of VBM regulations, and keep up to date with VBM datasets. While polling and analytics may be useful, there is no historical precedent for the next five months.

Sources: Campaigns and Elections and NPR

Old Maine Ballot Box
From old school to new school
New Research Initiative
Swing Left, the Maine Dems, and Vote Forward are partnering on a new get-out-the-absentee-ballot research project. Volunteers will send 15,000 letters to Maine Democrats encouraging them to vote absentee in the July 14 Maine primary. The team will compare the voting participation of those Down Easters with a control group that didn’t receive the letters.

This test will prove the effectiveness of the letter campaign and offer info on how best to reach out to voters in the fall. As important, the project will be the first step to shifting Maine voters to vote by mail.

Find out more about this project.
Join the MA for Maine Strategy Briefing on Tuesday, June 2 @ 5:30 pm.

New Yorkers write to Floridians
Northeasterners Write for Florida Votes
Organizers Patty and Alan Brownstein of Cold Springs, NY, “hosted” a group that just finished 750 VBM postcards and has agreed to do another 750.


Ask Your College, Take 2

Happily, 300 people signed up to participate in the launch of Ask Your College, urging colleges and universities to empower every eligible student to vote.

Sadly, the application locked out all but the first 100 attendees.

Happily, armed with the password #Vote2020#, you can see what everyone else missed at the Ask Your College Launch. You’ll learn how to leverage your connections to schools, writing the president and asking them to support voter registration by their students.

Together for 2020 Wave of the Week
Each week, Together for 2020 offers you an action, an event, and a candidate to explore: three ways to get involved in shaping the upcoming elections. This week, you can …

Become part of the Blue Wave! Visit Together for 2020 Wave of the Week.

Get in on the action as you Text to Get-Out-the-Vote in the Pennsylvania State Primary.

Dive into this event: Attend the Take Back Our Democracy (Virtual) Summit on Saturday May 30 @ 4:00 pm – 5:00 pm.

Meet Steve Bullock, the candidate running for Senate in Montana.
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