Why Trip to Flip? Swing District House Candidates Need Your Help to Win!
Put your time and frustration to good use!
Trip to Flip encourages modern-day patriots living in the Greater Boston Blue Bubble to go volunteer in winnable swing House districts prior to Election Day in November. We are helping winnable House districts that have a genuine need for volunteers to reach all their prospective voters.
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We encourage you to read through this webpage and FAQ before signing up.
Go to a Swing District:
- Leave the Blue Bubble and help win House seats that are up for grabs
- Go to where your time and effort can make a huge difference
- Experience a part of the U.S. you don’t know or go to a district where you have a personal connection (grew up, went to college, friends or family live there, issue important to you)
- Meet local voters and volunteers, and learn what’s important to them
There is still plenty to do even if you don’t live there!
Candidates Need You:
- To reach every voter
- To identify and mobilize sympathetic citizens
- To help voters overcome barriers erected by voter suppression efforts
- To reinforce the importance of voting in mid-terms when turn-out is usually low
Thinking of a day trip to canvass?
If you are thinking about a day trip to Maine, New Hampshire or New York, please see the Swing Left Boston events page to sign up for canvassing and (if you like) carpooling.
Jared Golden is a lifelong Mainer, Marine vet and currently serves as Assistant Majority Leader in the Maine State House. He is running to oust GOP incumbent and former Wall St exec Bruce Poliquin, who votes in lock-step with Trump 97% of the time, supported GOP tax cuts, and voted to gut the ACA which many struggling Maine residents rely on. This district is rated a Tossup by Cook Political Report, and recent polls indicate the race is neck-and-neck. Prior to Poliquin’s two terms, a Democrat held the seat for 10 years, and Democrats control the Maine State House. Jared is endorsed by DCCC’s Red to Blue program, End Citizens United, Maine AFL-CIO and the Congressional Progressive Caucus. Join others in longer trips and Last Weekend GOTV efforts in northern and western Maine.
Anthony Brindisi’s race in New York’s 22nd district is rated a Toss-up by Cook Political Report and Sabato’s Crystal Ball. It’s located in central New York, just a 4-hour drive from Boston. Brindisi is a young lawyer and advocate for public schools, named one of 5 ‘Young Guns’ in the New York Assembly by the Wall Street Journal. His key issues are public schools, job training, and economic development. His opponent, Claudia Tenney, has voted to defund Planned Parenthood, supported the attempt to repeal the ACA, and wants to lower corporate taxes further. Anthony disagrees with all these choices! He says “I want to restore that one simple promise: A congressman who wakes up everyday and fights for the middle class.” The campaign is eager for canvassers and especially for help with voter registration before the October 12 deadline.
Kathy Manning brings her skills and experience as the owner of a small business, a lawyer specializing in immigration, a community activist and a mother, to her campaign. She has worked for both for-profit and non-profit organizations. Kathy has lived and raised her three children in this district. Preserving health care access became an even greater priority due to her personal experience of the many barriers to overcome to help her daughter who developed a chronic illness. Current polls show Manning within 5 points. This district is seen as flippable since her opponent, freshman Congressman Ted Budd, has prioritized a dangerous and extreme agenda – he is against abortion and is a strong advocate for a border wall and other anti-immigration legislation. Kathy’s campaign welcomes volunteers from out-of-state at any time, and particularly wants help during the first 3 weeks in October. Early voting begins on October 18th.
Dan McCready is a Marine Corps veteran, small business owner, husband and father of four who grew up in his district. After going to Harvard Business School, he and a fellow Marine started a solar energy company that builds solar farms throughout North Carolina. Along with his focus on clean energy, Dan is working to create jobs particularly for rural communities, to make health care affordable by fighting prescription drug costs, and to fighting for the Lumbee Tribe that still does not have full federal recognition. Currently McCready is 5 points up in the polls and is dominating in fundraising. He is running against hard right former pastor Mark Harris who beat the republican incumbent in the primary. SwingLeft sees this district as a very flippable seat. Volunteers will be asked to canvas primarily in the south Charlotte and Mecklenburg areas and are welcome any time.
Clean energy entrepreneur Sean Casten is well positioned to turn eastern Illinois’s 6th district Blue. The district is west of Chicago, is 99% urban and 85% white. Cook Political Report rates the district R+2, that is, only slightly Republican. In 2007, Sean co-founded Recycled Energy Development, LLC (“RED”), with a mission to profitably reduce greenhouse gas emissions through the recovery of otherwise wasted energy. Casten is a nationally respected scientist who has been endorsed by Barack Obama, Sen. Dick Durbin, Sen. Elizabeth Warren, DCCC Red to Blue, 314 Action, Planned Parenthood and the League of Conservation Voters. Sean’s race is rated “Toss Up”; the district voted for Hillary Clinton in 2016 by 7%. Politico has named IL-06 one of the top ten races to watch in 2018. The incumbent, Republican Peter Roskam is the fourth ranking Republican in the House who votes with Trump 94% of the time, considers climate science “junk science”, and opposes the right to choose an abortion.
Brendan Kelly was born in this district into a family of public servants. As State’s Attorney for St. Clair County, he revolutionized the prosecution of domestic assault and crimes against children with strong outcomes, successfully sued major banks for fraudulent mortgage recording practices, and filed Illinois’ first suit against big pharma over opioids which are a significant problem in the district. IL 12 has historically voted Democratic, but narrowly elected Republican Mike Bost in 2014, and Bost and Trump in 2016. Brendan, a Navy Vet, is a good match for the incumbent who is a Marine Vet. Brendan’s priorities are re-building infrastructure, fighting powerful and corrupt dark money that’s eroding our democracy, and eliminating the devastation of opioids. This race remains a Toss-Up in spite of Trump’s late July rally in this largely rural and small town southern Illinois District. The campaign needs volunteers to canvass, support early voting and The Last Weekend.
In the rematch of a race she narrowly lost in 2016, Angie Craig is running a smart, hard-driving campaign to flip Minnesota-02. Raised by a single mother in a mobile home park, Angie worked two jobs to put herself through college and then spent much of her professional career working as a communications and HR executive in healthcare. With her wife Cheryl, she is the mother of four sons. In the 1990s Angie waged a 3-year, successful legal battle for the right to adopt one of their children in Tennessee, which didn’t permit same-sex adoptions. MN-02 is rated a Tossup. In recent years, voters have elected two Democratic Senators and voted for Obama twice. Hillary Clinton lost the district by just 1% in 2016. Incumbent Jason Lewis, who gained fame guest hosting for Rush Limbaugh, won this seat by 2% in 2016, when a third-party candidate took 5% of the vote.
Extolling the “small town, big heart” values of Iowa—and its toughness—Abby has vowed to fight for working families on issues like healthcare and education. Raised in a union household, she was immersed in politics from a young age. Now 28, she has served two terms in the state legislature, garnering many endorsements and strong union support. The race is rated a Tossup. IA-03 voted twice for Obama—by +18 in 2008 and +13 in 2012—before flipping to Trump by 5 points in 2016. A Democrat previously held the IA-01 House seat from 2007 to 2014. Incumbent Rod Blum votes with Trump 91% of the time and sides with GOP mega-donors on healthcare, trade and taxes. In a possible ethics violation, he failed to disclose ties to a company that helps clients ‘bury’ news about food and drug safety violations under positive Internet search results.
Cindy Axne is a fifth generation Iowan who has been endorsed by EMILY’s List, DCCC Red to Blue, Sen. Elizabeth Warren, Planned Parenthood and End Citizens’ United. Her district is in the southwest corner of Iowa, includes Des Moines (the state capital), and is 70% urban and 30% farmland. In recent polling, Cindy leads the incumbent, Rep. David Young, by 4%. Axios and FiveThirtyEight have identified IA-03 as one of the most competitive races in the midterms. The race is rated “Toss Up”. The Iowa ticket is headed by a very popular Democratic gubernatorial candidate (Fred Hubbell), who is running against a very unpopular Republican incumbent (Kim Reynolds), who signed a six-week abortion ban into law in the Spring. David Young is the third largest recipient of NRA funding in the US House, and votes with Donald Trump 98.6% of the time. Young has purchased $1m of television time. Already, his attack ads are playing in Des Moines.
Debbie Mucarsel-Powell has built a grassroots campaign that can turn this usually Republican district Blue. However, Mucarsel-Powell is running against an incumbent who has amassed a considerable war chest. Debbie immigrated to the US from Ecuador as a young girl with her single mother. She worked to help her family make ends meet and pay her way through college. Debbie has been an executive in non-profit organizations for more than 20 years, improving access to healthcare, protecting the environment and increasing educational opportunities in South Florida. This district is 70% Hispanic, south of Miami and includes the Florida Keys. This is a very Democratic district that went for Clinton and Obama twice. Republican incumbent Carlos Curbelo has won two close races, largely by talking like a moderate while voting with Trump.
Colin Allred is a civil rights attorney, Dallas native and former NFL player.He worked as Special Assistant in HUD’s Office of General Counsel with then-Secretary Julian Castro. He was Dallas-Fort Worth Director of the first-ever statewide coordinated voter protection program led by Battleground Texas during the 2014 gubernatorial election. He’s been endorsed by DCCC Red to Blue, Human Rights Watch, Black Congressional Caucus, Planned Parenthood and Moms Demand Action. This district serves a suburban area of northeastern Dallas. Although the Partisan Voter Index is R+5, Hillary Clinton won the district 49%-46% in 2016 and it is rated as a Toss-up by the Cook Political Report. The incumbent Pete Sessions scores on the far right of GovTrack’s ideology Index; he has served 8 terms but is considered one of the two most vulnerable incumbents in Texas due to the rapidly moderating nature of his district.
Gina Ortiz-Jones is running to flip Texas-23, one of the two most competitive House seats in a very red state. An Air Force vet and out lesbian, she served in Iraq and later worked on security, intelligence and trade issues in the Pentagon and the Obama White House. TX-23 is up for grabs. In 2 of the 3 most recent presidential races, Clinton (2016) and Obama (2008) carried the district by small margins. House races have been equally close. Incumbent Will Hurd was elected by just a few thousand votes in 2014 and 2016. However, Hurd is a tough opponent and a favorite of mega-donors. He votes with Trump 95% of the time but makes the empty gesture of taking moderate positions on topics like Trump’s wall and family separation at the border. Axios rated TX-23 as one of the top 5 most competitive House pickup opportunities for Democrats.
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All of our recommended candidates are ranked as ‘Toss Ups’ by two eminently respected poll analysts – Cook Political Report and Sabato’s Crystal Ball. All are far from major Democratic strongholds that could provide large numbers of volunteers. We have spoken to all campaigns and they want and are prepared to make good use of the volunteers we send.
Every vote counts. A recent VA House of Delegates election count was tied and a flip of a coin decided the race. Many recent elections have been decided by less than 1% of the vote. Many Presidential election voters don’t show up at mid-term elections. Democrats will win if we turn out our vote. Strong GOTV has been an important factor in recent Special Election successes.
We are choosing campaigns that tell us that they welcome volunteers from out of district. On the rare occasion that you are called upon to discuss local issues, the campaign will provide you with their positions and you can call back with more information as needed. Most voters will not know or care where you’re from if you help them exercise their right to vote. Others tell us that if people have made such an effort to be there, this election must be very important and their own vote must really matter. It inspires them to vote.
You will decide. Trip to Flip can provide information and suggestions, and help you decide what’s best for you.
November 3-6, 2018, the Last Weekend, is a priority for all campaigns but virtually all of them welcome help at any time before then. We encourage you to go for more than a weekend so you can become familiar with the people, the district, and have a more meaningful impact.
You are welcome to go alone, or to organize family and friends to go with you.
You are responsible for your travel to the district. Depending on the location, you might fly, take a train, or drive. It can be helpful to have access to a car while working on the campaign.
Some campaigns may be able to offer housing in the home of volunteers but you can’t count on that. Please consider making your own arrangements to stay with friends or family, AirBNB, hotel or guest suite.
The cost depends entirely on your choices – location, travel, housing and food costs, etc.