Contributed by Elycia Lerman.

It’s that time when we need to start pulling together to put the people in office who will best represent us elected officials. As an activist organization, each one of us needs to make a personal commitment to support Get Out The Vote – aka GOTV – efforts, and here’s an overview of what’s to come, with a request to make a pledge to be part of this year’s and next’s Blue Wave. 

We’ve drafted our 2019 plans, and are outlining how we’ll cover the short distance to the 2020 election. Familiar efforts like canvassing, postcarding and voter registration will be part of the mix. We’ll offer educational activities to help people feel comfortable with traditional outreach efforts, such as canvassing, phone banking, etc., and calendar opportunities to partner with candidate campaigns and national efforts like MoveOn’s texting campaigns and PostCards to Voters. Our voter registration and VBM awareness activities will kick up, with tables on the street, at markets and other public places, and reminders to students and others about the correct process to vote by mail so they’re sure to be counted. 

In addition to these basic tools, ILNH and other local activist organizations are working with an organization called Changing The Conversation Together to learn and use deep canvassing. Cindi wrote about this in the last newsletter, but in summary, this is a different tactic than canvassing for a candidate and instead, engages voters in value-based conversations on issues. Our pilot training and canvassing experience will take place on Sept 22, and will initially be focused on flipping PA CD01, which went for Trump in 2016, but Obama in the previous election. It is a full-day commitment, with two and a half hours of training, two hours of canvassing, then two hours of debrief from the canvassing. Once trained, the skills can be applied to any campaign. We still have room and hope you’ll join us!  

If you’re as anxious as we are about turning the direction of the country around, and seeing more progressive values come to the forefront, you know that it will take all hands on deck. We’re hoping our volunteers will make a pledge – a number of hours, number of postcards, texts, etc – that you will commit to securing the outcome we truly want to see on a local, state and national level this year and next. As always, we’ll make it fun as we track all of our awesome efforts and watch the collective experience grow. Remember the Flipper Challenge from last year? 

We also need people to step up and lead or manage portions of this massive effort. Consider joining the GOTV team. We have a new Slack GOTV channel to sign into (old ones have been archived). If you’re not on Slack and want to participate, send an email to or Elaine Clisham.

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