25 June, 2021— Today, Swing Left, the national grassroots organization that was one of the largest drivers of grassroots volunteers and donors working to help Democrats win control of the White House and Senate in the 2020 elections after working to flip the House in 2018, announced a 10-year plan to defend American democracy, including its initial slate of competitive target races for the 2022 midterm elections where it will help elect Democrats to key state and federal offices.
Swing Left’s 10-year electoral strategy seeks to maintain, grow, and channel the energy of grassroots volunteers and donors to support Democrats to win the races that will determine the balance of power across the country. The plan seeks to achieve three main goals: hold the Democratic trifecta in Virginia in 2021, protect Democratic majorities in Congress in 2022 to give the Biden-Harris administration four full years to pass legislation that can improve American lives, and engage in a 10-year effort to strengthen democracy at the state level by winning state legislative and gubernatorial races in key battleground states where GOP efforts to restrict voting rights and undermine election integrity can have national implications.
“An unprecedented wave of grassroots energy successfully removed Trump from office and gave Democrats full control of the federal government, but American democracy remains incredibly fragile,” said Swing Left co-founder and president Ethan Todras-Whitehill. “The GOP is still Trump’s party, and Republican elected officials are doubling down on undermining the integrity of future elections, rather than doing what’s best for the American people. To defend our democracy, we must deliver Republicans a historic series of defeats at the ballot box over the next decade, to show them that a fight against American democracy itself is not a fight they can win.”
”Moving from resistance to persistence means competing not just for Congress in the years ahead, but also charting a decade-long path to win key state legislative majorities with an eye towards not just 2021 or 2022, but 2031,” said Swing Left executive director Tori Taylor. “We need a sustained all-hands-on-deck grassroots effort, and Swing Left is here to help grassroots volunteers and donors to make the biggest impact possible on the elections that will determine the balance of power in our government.”
To defend the U.S. Senate, Swing Left is announcing its support for five competitive races in 2022: the reelection campaigns of Senator Kelly in Arizona and Senator Warnock in Georgia, and the eventual Democratic nominees for Senate in North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin.
To win governorships in purple states where the governor can act as a bulwark against voter suppression and protect against attempts to subvert democracy in 2024, Swing Left is supporting the reelection campaign of Governor Evers in Wisconsin and the campaigns of the eventual Democratic nominees for governor in Florida and Georgia, in addition to our current support of former Governor Terry McAuliffe in Virginia this year. This is the first cycle in which Swing Left will support gubernatorial races.
To build towards winning control of state legislative chambers ahead of the 2030 redistricting cycle, Swing Left will target state legislative districts across seven states including Arizona, Michigan, and New Hampshire where Swing Left is aiming to flip control of their respective state legislatures this cycle, and competitive races in Georgia, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Texas that will create the opportunity for Democrats to gain ground as part of a 10-year plan to flip control of state legislatures over multiple election cycles. Swing Left is also supporting 10 House of Delegates candidates in Virginia this year. Swing Left will prioritize states where voting rights can and must be protected, including states with a history of gerrymandering and/or voter suppression, and where federal races are critical to the national balance of power.
To defend the House, Swing Left will support a slate of U.S. House candidates in 2022, determined after the redistricting process has been completed by each state and new congressional district lines are drawn. Swing Left is already starting to recruit volunteers and raise early funds for eventual Democratic nominees in nearly 20 states that are most likely to draw at least one competitive swing district. This includes launching a new National Congressional Defense Fund, a first-of-its-kind fundraising model uniquely structured to allow donors to immediately give early money that will be disbursed directly to the most competitive Congressional candidates after the redistricting process is completed. This dynamic fund expands on Swing Left’s history of innovative grassroots electoral fundraising pioneered with its District Funds model in the 2018 midterms, for which Fast Company named Swing Left one of its “Most Innovative Companies” of the year.
The plan was previewed on a National Strategy Update call with grassroots organizers and volunteers on Thursday night featuring special guest DNC chair Jaime Harrison.
“Over the last four years we saw how a wave of national grassroots energy, channeled strategically through organizations like Swing Left, played a critical role in helping Democrats win key elections and strengthen our democracy,” said Jaime Harrison, chair of the DNC. “But despite our victories, the threats to our democracy have not gone away. That’s why I’m so excited for Swing Left and its grassroots army of volunteers to double down with a powerful, smart, and sustained electoral strategy that will help defend and build on our hard-fought progress. It will take all of us staying involved to create an America that finally works for all.”
“We’re excited to see Swing Left expand its electoral focus to recognize the importance of governorships to the protection of our democracy,” said chair of the Democratic Governors Association, Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham (D-NM). “With Republicans doing everything they can at the state level to take away voting rights, reduce voting access, and question the integrity of elections, Democratic governors are among the last lines of defense to protect our rights. We look forward to the support of Swing Left and its members to help elect more Democratic governors in states across the country.”
Swing Left’s focus is to help grassroots volunteers and donors make an early and ongoing impact on the elections that determine the balance of power in our government in the short- and long-term. The grassroots impact will be made through voter contact actions— relational organizing, phone banking, letter writing with our affiliate Vote Forward, and the return to in-person door knocking and events—as well as fundraising with direct-to-candidate funds and investing in long-term democracy building with our award-winning Blueprint
“As we saw over the last four years, the vast army of donors and volunteers Swing Left has helped mobilize to support Democratic campaigns can make a real impact by providing the monetary and people-powered resources needed to reach key voters to help communicate the successes of Democrats and encourage them to continue to vote Democratic,” added Taylor. “This impact is particularly true in midterm elections that experience lower turnout, where the effort of volunteers to turn out the base in their closest swing district or from afar can make a much larger difference.“
Since its founding in early 2017, Swing Left has built a community of more than 1 million grassroots members, including affiliated groups in more than 250 cities and towns across 40 states, who came together to win back the White House, flip the House and Senate, and make key gains in our continued fight for a better democracy.
About Swing Left
Swing Left is a national grassroots organization working to empower grassroots volunteers and donors from across the country to support Democratic candidates up and down the ballot in the most competitive races to shift the balance of power and protect our democracy.
Swing Left is proud to have been a part of the 2020 fight that helped elect President Joe Biden and VP Kamala Harris, and won the Senate for Democrats. During the 2020 cycle. Swing Left’s grassroots army of volunteers and donors raised $26.75 million for candidates and civic organizations, made 9.2 million phone calls, and wrote 21.5 million letters to voters with its affiliate Vote Forward and their partners. In an over-saturated election cycle, Swing Left successfully directed grassroots time and money in a way that optimized their impact in changing the country’s balance of power. Seventy-five percent of Swing Left’s donations to candidates and 90% of our voter contact went to states where presidential or Senate races were determined by single-digit margins (AZ, CO, FL, ME, MI, NC, OH, PA, TX, WI).
Since launching in 2017 in the wake of the election of Donald Trump to take back the House, Swing Left grassroots volunteers and donors have raised nearly $40 million for candidates and civic organizations and made 39 million combined phone calls, door knocks, and letters sent to voters through Swing Left and its affiliate Vote Forward.
Go to swingleft.org and find out how you can get involved today.