“Somewhere inside of all of us is the power to change the world.” – Roald Dahl
Dahl may very well have been talking about Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg who showed that an individual could indeed change the world. As we mourn her devastating loss and wonder what the vacancy on the Supreme Court means for the future of our country, it’s important that we turn our grief into action.
We must volunteer, make phone calls, donate, and basically do everything we can to protect our hard-won civil rights and liberties, shared values, and way of life. Every minute and every action counts and can be the difference between victory and loss this November.
Read on to find out how you can channel your inner power and change the world!
Rest in power, RBG. We won’t let you down!
- Calendar at a Glance
- Mark your calendars for “The Last Weekends!”
- Voting Isn’t Enough. Pick Up the phone!
- Phone Bank Trainings and Hosting Opportunities
- Strategic Phone Banks: Arizona, North Carolina, and More
- Letter Writing: Mailing Dates Announced!
- Other ways to get involved: Travel, Texting, Friendbanking, and Listening!
- Partner Organization Activities
Specific upcoming dates (more info below):
- Fri, 10/16 or Sat, 10/17: MAIL ALL VOTE FORWARD LETTERS! (not earlier, not later!)
- Sat, 10/17 – Sun, 11/1: “The Last Weekends” Sign up
Strategic actions every day, every week (see details & more events below)
3 weekends of action. 18 days to volunteer. 100s of ways to get involved!
From October 17th–November 1st, Swing Left and many partner organizations are making it easy to virtually connect with voters in key states in order to swing the Senate, beat Trump, and turn state legislatures blue. During the Last Weekends of the 2020 election, don’t just vote—volunteer! Make a difference when and where it matters most!
Look, we get it. Phone banking can seem daunting, even intimidating. But, if we want to preserve our country as we know it, protect our environment, and ensure a more just and equitable society, we have to overcome our fears and make those calls. There’s simply no other way to connect with potential voters that’s as effective as having 1:1 conversations, particularly during these last few weeks!
Given that door-to-door canvassing is mostly off the table this year, it’s essential that we double down on phone banking. Potential voters will have questions about vote-by-mail, early voting, polling locations, and so much more. We’ve got to do everything we can to get every last Democratic voter to the polls!
Remember the bustling local Democratic headquarters from previous years? The good news is that–even though you’ll be at home–you won’t be phone banking alone! There’s always someone on the Zoom call to train you and to provide all the help and community spirit you need!
- Think Phone Banking Isn’t for You? Overview for New & Reluctant Callers, Mondays 2:30-3:00pm PT (with Swing Left Peninsula and CA-Dems) RSVP
- Phone Banking 101, Wednesdays, 5:00-5:30pm PT OR Fridays, 12:30-1:00 PT (with Swing Left National) RSVP
- Basic Zoom & Computer Skills for Phone Banks, Thurs, 11am PT (with Swing Left Peninsula & CA-Dems) RSVP
Host a Phone Bank:
Phone banking can help us win but only if a lot of us do it. Host your own virtual phone bank and get your friends and family to join the cause! Swing Left National’s phone bank host guide will take you through all the steps for hosting: creating an event, connecting to a phone bank, and giving your attendees the tools they need for success. You’ll also learn how to foster community and make it fun!
Ensure Wins Up and Down the Ballot!
Calls to Arizona!
We’re calling strategic parts of the state, mostly Legislative District 17 (LD17) in the Phoenix area. Our calls not only move us closer to flipping the state legislature (and ending gerrymandering), they also send “reverse coattail” ripples up the ballot for Kelly and Biden. Every call gives us a triple effect! Training included.
- Wednesdays, 3:00 – 5:30pm PT (with Swing Left Peninsula) RSVP
- Tuesdays – Thursdays, 12:00 – 2:00pm PT (with the LD17 campaign) RSVP
- Saturdays, 10:00am – 1:00pm PT (with the LD17 campaign) RSVP
- Sundays, 1:00 – 4:00pm PT (with the LD17 campaign) RSVP
- Recruit Poll Observers: Tuesdays-Thursdays, 6:00-8:00pm PT (for Kelly/Biden) RSVP
- Spanish: Tuesdays – Sundays, multiple times available (for Kelly/Biden)RSVP
Calls to North Carolina!
North Carolina is the only state that promises a QUADRUPLE win! We’re going for its 15 electoral votes, Senate seat, and state legislature flip…and defending Governor Roy Cooper. 1 CALL = 4 RACES!
- Sundays, 1:00 – 3:30pm PT (with Swing Left Peninsula) RSVP(training included)
- Tuesdays-Sundays, multiple time options (with the NC Dems) RSVP
- For training, choose from these specific times: Tues-Fri, 2pm PT; Tues 11am PT; Sun 12pm PT
For voter protection:
- Help Voters Fix Rejected Mail-In Ballots: Every day, multiple times (with the NC Dems) RSVP
- Recruit Poll Observers & Hotline Volunteers: Thurs, 1-3pm PT & Sat, 10am-noon PT (NC Dems) RSVP
- Staff the Voter Assistance Hotline: (with the NC Dems) Sign up for detailed training & shifts
Call Other States!
Flip-the-Senate Priority Calls:
The DSCC will tell us which U.S. Senate race is most in need of calls each week, based on current polling data, fundraising totals, and advertising spending. Training included.
- Mondays, 3:00 – 5:00pm PT (with Swing Left Peninsula & CA-Dems) RSVP
- Spanish: Sundays, 4:30 – 6:30pm, PT (San Mateo County LatinX Democratic Club) RSVP
Democratic Volunteer Center
Join a shift, then pick a race (current choices include Biden and U.S. Senate races in Iowa, Maine, and North Carolina). Training included at beginning of each shift. RSVP
- Tuesdays & Thursdays: 3:00-4:30pm PT OR 4:00-5:30pm PT OR 5:00-6:30pm PT
- Saturdays: 1:00-2:30pm PT OR 2:00-3:30pm PT
Swing Left National’s Strategic Phone Bank Hub
Swing Left is working directly with campaigns in the Super States to let you know where your help is most needed. Opportunities will be added regularly, so check back here for updates. Current options:
- Florida for Biden: Everyday, many time options RSVP
- Iowa–Biden & U.S. Senate Candidate Theresa Greenfield: Sat, 11am & Sun, 2pm PT RSVP
- Michigan for Biden & more: Everyday, many time options RSVP
- Ohio for Biden & more: Saturdays & Sundays, 10am PT RSVP
- Pennsylvania for Biden & more: Everyday, many time options RSVP
- Wisconsin for Biden & more: Everyday, many time options RSVP
Vote Forward Mail Dates Announced For 2020 GOTV Letters
MAIL DATES: FRIDAY OR SATURDAY, OCTOBER 16th OR 17th! (don’t mail before or after these dates!)
(We’ve listed two days, because many local post offices are closed on Saturdays. Click here to find a post office near you open on Saturday, October 17th. )
See below for some mailing tips!
BIG SEND UPDATE: Vote Forward is aiming to send 10 Million GOTV letters on Oct 16-17th. Nationally, we’re almost there with over 9 Million prepared so far! Swing Left Peninsula, with your help, distributed 251,600 letters since May 1st! (And that’s on top of the tens of thousands of letters we and hundreds of Peninsula volunteers wrote in 2019 and early 2020.) Thank you everyone!
Less than ONE MILLION letters to go!
- If you run out of letters before the October “Mail Dates”’ you may download and print letters at home (at votefwd.org). Click here for detailed instructions.
- Click here to attend a virtual letter-writing party to help you finish off your stack!
General mailing tips
- Please get your postage now; there may be delays later.
- Blue curbside mailboxes are suitable for mailing up to about 100 letters.
- Double-check that all of your letters drop down into the box.
- Remove all rubber bands before mailing.
- We’re mailing first-class, so sorting by zip code is not necessary.
Large batches of letters (over 100)
- If you can, take your letters to the post office to help your mail carrier out. If a branch post office is more convenient for you, you do not need to go to your “main” post office.
- “Drop” your letters as early as possible. Postal staff will need some time to handle them–to see that they get to the District processing center in a timely manner.
- If you are mailing 400+ letters, visit your post office ahead of time to borrow a tray. You’ll want one for each batch of about 400 letters. If you can’t borrow a tray, use a box. Be sure all of your letters are facing the same direction in the tray or box.
COVID-19 precautions: If you are quarantining or don’t feel safe going to your post office, make arrangements with a friend, neighbor, family member, or neighborhood mail carrier to pick up and mail your letters for you. Dropping your letters in a blue mailbox may also be an option, if you feel you can do it safely.
Note: We’ve written to the Consumer Affairs office of the San Francisco District USPS, which processes mail from Sunnyvale to Eureka. We have asked them to notify local post offices to expect a larger than usual volume of mail on October 16th and 17th, and to ensure staffing and trucking needed to get our letters from local post offices to District processing without delay.
See here to learn how Vote Forward chose the “mail date.”
Travel, Texting, Friendbanking and Listening!
Most campaigns are foregoing door knocking this year and instead focusing on phone banking. But here are a few opportunities for those of you who are itching to volunteer in a Super State. If you’re going to travel, please consider a state that gives you the most bang for your buck…like promising crucial electoral votes AND a Senate seat at the same time! If you hear of other concrete opportunities with sign-up links, please contact us:
- Biden Campaign (Poll Observer): Sign up here
- Biden Campaign (“Late Help” Volunteer): Offers three multi-day shift options (4 weeks beginning Oct 5th; 10 days or 4 days, beginning Oct 25th). Most opportunities will be virtual, but the campaign is leaving open the option of on-the-ground work. Sign up here
- Arizona Dems (Poll Observer): “Mission for Arizona” is working to elect Biden and Mark Kelly. They need poll observers any time between October 7th-November 3rd. Sign up here
- North Carolina (Poll Observer): Sign up here with the NC Dems
- America Votes: Some America Votes partners are getting back into the field for in-person programs like door-to-door canvasses and literature drops – complete with new safety protocols – in key states like Arizona, Florida, and North Carolina, with others coming soon. Contact: email@example.com
- For lawyers: Sign up here for non-partisan voter rights protection with WeTheAction and Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law.
- For non lawyers: Sign up here for non-partisan voter rights protection with Protect the Vote.
- Or do a bit of googling to sign up directly with the Democratic party in your favorite Super State.
North Carolina: Text training with the NC Dems (for Cunningham/Biden and more)
- Tuesdays & Thursdays, 2:00pm PT & Saturdays, 9:00am PT. RSVP
Arizona: Text Training with the the AZ Dems (for Kelly and Biden)
- Saturdays, 12:00 – 12:30 pm PT. RSVP
Friendbanking: Activate Your Networks
Especially People You Know in Super States!
“Relational organizing” means reaching out to the people you already know—your friends, family, and neighbors—to mobilize and build collective power. By working together (virtually), you can lift each other up, brainstorm messaging, and identify members in your networks who are likely to volunteer in the remaining weeks to help us win the Super States. See Swing Left’s Relational Organizing Party host guide.
If you want to see what a relational organizing party looks like, join Indivisible Marin at one of their Friendbanking events (Thurs 10/1 or 10/8, 5:00-6:00pm PT). And check out their Friendbanking Toolkit!
How We Win: A Swing Left Podcast
Down Ballot with Rita Bosworth
We have a fantastic conversation with Rita Bosworth, Executive Director and Founder of Sister District about how important volunteer engagement is, and why “Down ballot races are where it’s at!” And joining as this week’s guest co-host is Swing Left’s social media manager, Ellen Wernecke. She helps us break down the week and talk about what it’s like to be on Twitter, every waking moment! Tune in here!
Local Event Calendar and Texting Help!
Our local DVC (Democratic Volunteer Center) maintains a fantastic calendar of events with phone banks, candidate fora, and more. Also, learn how to start TEXTING with the DVC’s Getting Started Guide, or get texting help and sign up for a weekly summary of current texting campaigns on several platforms at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Pre-Debate Panel with California Elected Officials
Tues, Sep 29th, 5:00pm
Join Democrats from around the Peninsula for a pre-presidential debate panel consisting of local and state elected officials. We will be discussing the election, the economy, racial justice, the COVID-19 response, and the impact these issues will have as we get closer to Nov 3rd. RSVP here
DVC Post-Debate Discussion
Tues, Sep 29th, 7:30pm
Share your thoughts about Joe Biden’s performance in the debate. Santa Clara County Democratic Party Chair Bill James will moderate this community discussion following the debate. RSVP here.
VP Debate: Pre-Debate Panel on Women in Leadership and the Promise of Kamala’s Candidacy
Wed, Oct 7th, 5:00-6:00 pm
Join Dems from around the Peninsula for a pre-debate, all-women panel of Bay Area and CA leaders discussing: women in politics (from campaigning to holding office); what Kamala’s candidacy means for women and people of color; gun violence prevention; the COVID-19 response; the economy; and GOTV/volunteering. Hosted by Moms Demand Action and CA-Dems. RSVP here.
Phone (and Text) Bank for TJ and Josh
- TJ Cox in CA-21: RSVP here for Phone and Text Banking and Trainings.
- Josh Harder in CA-10 (Mondays, Wedne
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