We are still trying to reach our goal for the effort we introduced yesterday, but we have another new effort today, too. If you missed yesterday’s pst, here’s the thermometer and a link.
Our fund-raising efforts for most of 2021-22 were focused on smaller, but very impactful organizations, who often needed our help to expand their infrastructure – a field organizer for Voces in Wisconsin, interns for Promote the Vote in Michigan, startup funds for Four Directions in multiple states, boots on the ground for Voting Access for All Coalition, etc.
By August or September, that could no longer be considered “early money”, so we shifted gears. The goal was, and still is, to donate strategically, with targeted fundraising – not just to the big names or to the candidates we love – but trying to donate where there’s a chance of success and where our money is not like salt in the ocean! Trying, also, to protect voting access and trying to build firewalls against the election-deniers who are running for SOS and AG in multiple states.
Our most recent rollout is a combination of “trickle up” fundraising to increase turnout and giving a leg up to smaller state-level campaigns where $2,500 a person really could make the difference between winning and losing. Those folks aren’t spending thousands and thousands on TV ads; they are printing literature and door knocking and running targeted internet ads, and they can really put the last-minute money to good use.
Now we have one more fundraising effort to roll out.
Worker Power is a larger organization than we have targeted in the past. However, this close to the election, our money and efforts are best deployed to a “shovel-ready” organization (so to speak), with its organizational infrastructure already in place.
Almost Retired and I spoke directly with Worker Power Executive Director Brendan Walsh, who estimated that $1,000 would support an out-of-town canvasser for a week, if he or she required travel and housing stipends. Donations will also, of course, support the hiring and training of local residents, who would not require stipends.
He assured us that canvassers would also be laser-focused on the down-ballot races we’re supporting with Balloon-Juice thermometers, including the Secretary of State and Attorney General races.
Worker Power is on the ground in Arizona right now.
Wouldn’t it be great if we could fund 25 people on the ground in AZ for a week?
They have a proven track record of driving voter turnout.
Worker Power is a multi-racial, multi-generational organization built by UNITE HERE Local 11 and CASE Action Fund that uses union organizing tactics and community-driven electoral campaigns to fight for economic social and immigrant justice. In 2020, Worker Power ran the single largest field operation in Arizona, flipping the state blue. Then we went to Georgia to flip the US Senate. At the height of the pandemic, our team of more than 500 workers and young people put on masks, hit the pavement and knocked on over 1 million doors to transform the country.
An article in The Nation
Through these campaigns, they established a sterling track record of bringing new voters – especially low-income and minority residents, as well as young people in high school and college – into the political process.
Over the five months they were in Phoenix, the local’s canvassers knocked on hundreds of thousands of doors (union officials put the number at 800,000, including repeat knocks) and talked to 190,000 people, of whom roughly 150,000 gave positive responses indicated they supported Biden for president and Kelly for the open US Senate seat. This was after registering many thousands of new, often young voters earlier in the year.