A good strategy for flipping CA-10 blue is going to require people working on all fronts: those registering new voters (shout out to Register Blue!), those reframing current issues to swing Trump-leaning voters back to Democrats (shout out to Working America's proven Central Valley strategy!) and someone ensuring that our base doesn't skip the election (that's us)! How important is it to make sure our base doesn't fail to get out and vote?
Important enough to threaten people with plagues of bees.
How many currently registered Democrats skipped the midterms in CA-10 in 2014 who voted in 2012? 15,778.
How many votes did Rep. Jeff Denham barely win his seat by in 2016? 8,201. (124,671 vs 116,470)
How many votes did Rep. Jeff Denham barely win his seat by in 2014? 15,459. (70,582 vs 55,123)
Are reactivating registered Democrats who skip midterms a critical, unappreciated resource? You bet your patootie.
In every election there are people who forget to vote or don't think it's important to vote. It turns out that in CA-10 there are so many of them, if you got them all to vote you could have defeated Rep. Jeff Denham and flipped his seat from red to blue in 2014. Or in 2016. There are more Democrats registered today who skipped 2014 than the entire margin of win for either election in 2014 or 2016.
Some of these people probably moved and that's why they missed the election. And some probably passed away. But in our test canvasing of CA-07 with this same population profile, a lot of them were right there in the same place they were in 2014.
I pulled them from my voter file vendor and mapped them below. There are 15,778 voters in 13,683 households. Each blue dot represents a household.
The California Away Team has a midterm skipper Get Out The Vote Strategy that helps to activate these voters without the time-consuming work of re-registering them. We go to their door, visit them and talk about the number of people that skip the election, and then get them to enroll in our reminder service. They fill out one of these two postcards in their own handwriting which we will then send back to them right before the election. This is what they look like:
This is the funny postcard.
And this is the serious one. We learned we needed a serious one.
These voters are far enough apart that you generally need a car to canvas them well, but in our tests you can hit 20 to 25 houses per hour.
And you're talking to Democrats! No weird conversations about Hillary's emails or Making America Great Again here. These conversations are so friendly, we get a 50% or better close rate for enrolling. This means that for every two Democrats who answers the door, one of them fills out two of our postcards and gives them back to you with a promise to vote in the mid-terms.
We're also planning some phone bank and re-visits as well, but that's a discussion for closer to the election.
How can you help? Are you excited about the potential?
The California Away Team is seeking a local partner in CA-10 to work with to implement our midterm skipper GOTV strategy. We seek a local organization that has:
- a good track record of generating volunteers;
- a deep enough leadership team that a single volunteer burning out won't endanger the program; and
- is capable of making a commitment to do a canvassing event every 45-60 days between now and October 2018.
We can provide the funding for the data infrastructure, the voterfile purchases, and the data team to cut turf and generate walk lists, train canvassers, run staging locations, and provide post-event data entry.
We believe strongly in the idea that "You can get anything done as long as you're willing to share the credit." If you're interested in being that partner, please contact Shabbir Imber Safdar at 415 630 3736 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
(In case you're curious, 4,016 currrently registered Democrats voted in 2012 General election and then skipped the 2016 General election in CA-10. Horrifying, I know!)