The Alliance Network works year-round to protect our democracy and expand voting access for young people, and that includes fighting hard for primary elections! After a not-so-off-year, election prep is in full swing again for states with early primaries. Here’s a glimpse of some of the organizing happening in the Alliance Network in the weeks ahead.
A Summer of Primaries
Loud Light worked in coalition to stop the abortion ban constitutional amendment in the August primary. Because of ongoing legal challenges to significant voter suppression bills, they focused on nonpartisan education campaigns instead of direct voter contact, and still reached a significant amount of young voters through their VoteNeigh social media campaign.
With Kansas voters being the first to vote on abortion access post-roe, this win led by youth organizers will set a precedent for abortion access on the ballot in future elections.
Over the course of their primary election season, Next Up completed 55,587 calls including volunteer recruitment. Until Election Day on May 17th Next Up organizers were texting and making phone calls to folks who they either helped register to vote, or voters who have pledged to vote since 2018.
In support of their endorsed candidates they completed:
- 11,073 calls for their Multnomah County slate of candidates
- 14,211 calls for their Washington County slate of candidates
- 18,303 calls for their Clackamas County Slate
Leaders Igniting Transformation
LIT has knocked 23,547 doors this year, with 10,333 of the doors happening between August 1st and Election Day (August 9th). LIT mainly focused on door knocking in 3 Aldermanic Districts in Milwaukee with the highest % of youth voter voters and the lowest turnout. On Election Day, the LIT team made 3,813 calls and staff participated in election protection efforts to support voters who’s polling places were moved.
During this year’s primary season, the Mississippi Votes team had Twitter town halls to let Mississippians know what was on the ballot, what they’d need to bring with them to the polls, and answering any questions they had about the election.
Outside of the Twitter town halls, they monitored seven precincts and provided snacks at the polls for voters as they waited in line. The MS Votes team also helped and worked the Election Protection Hotline with One Voice answering any calls voters had about their polling place or any issues or questions about voting.
Minnesota Youth Collective
Ahead of the Minnesota on August 9th, MNYC campus organizers had been door knocking in the neighborhoods surrounding the University of Minnesota and gearing up for welcome week at the U of M, Augsburg, Carleton, and St. Olaf. Campus Organizers at the University of Minnesota – Twin Cities campus also hosted an informational voter event ahead of the Primary Election to keep students engaged. Additionally, MNYC tabled at two Open Streets events: Franklin Avenue & East Lake St, engaging with hundreds of Minneapolis residents ahead of the Primary Election.
The Washington Bus
This year, The Washington Bus endorsed 11 candidates total in their all-party primaries, and 10 advanced to the general election ballot, with over half getting the most votes total! Endorsements were made by the Youth Endorsement League, a group of young Washingtonians which was supported by WA Bus staff and Board to research, interview, and endorse a field of candidates.
The Chicago Votes team was busy this primary season! In addition to sharing voter guides in English, Spanish, Tagalog, and Arabic, they also hosted several events to keep young voters engaged. Parades to the Polls, was an event where Chicago Votes paraded students from Orr and Hancock high schools to vote for the very first time, and they also hosted Party at the Polls in Woodlawn, North Lawndale and Englewood that had free food, live DJs, voter resources
And thanks to Chicago Votes organizers, Cook County Jail had record turnout of 24.9% (which is higher than Chicago’s at-large turnout of around 20%).
May 2022 Primaries
North Carolina Asian Americans Together
Leading up to their May 17 primary, NCAAT worked in multiple Congressional Districts, Senate Districts and House Districts throughout the state to help turnout Asian American voters in the primaries for progressive candidates who prioritized safe and inclusive communities, educated citizens, and fair representation. They sent 137,000 mailers, attempted 30,000 calls, knocked on 500 doors, greeted voters at the polls with slate cards, and promoted social media ads, which helped to raise the Asian American early vote turnout to its highest level since 2014 for a midterm primary election!
The NCAAT team gave us a look into their primary work on the Alliance Instagram! Check out our primaries story highlight to see their feature.
MOVE Texas worked in House District 28 to help turn out voters in the Democratic runoff between Jessica Cisneros and Henry Cuellar (the last anti-choice House Democrat). Through phonebanking, texts, and a weekend of door knocking, MOVE turned out as many people as possible for Jessica Cisneros in a tight race with a 177 vote difference that is still too close to call.
Last year, Forward Montana filed a lawsuit to challenge voter suppression laws passed by the state legislature that made it more difficult for Montanans to cast their ballot. In early April, a judge granted their request for a preliminary injunction on their voting rights case! This means that until a final ruling is made, Senate Bill 169, House Bill 506, and House Bill 176 are no longer in effect. Forward Montana also held five candidate forums ahead of their June primaries.
Early Spring Primaries
Leaders Igniting Transformation
LIT is getting Wisconsin vote ready! Their local primaries included a big mayoral race in Milwaukee and school board seats up for grabs in La Crosse, where LIT secured mental health resources and family assistance programs last month. Wisconsin’s first statewide election is April 5th.
The youth organizers at MOVE Texas are getting out the vote for early voting! They know that the future of their state –from civil rights, to healthcare, to climate change– lies in the hands of those who win these seats during primary elections:
- Lieutenant Governor
- Attorney General
- 38 House seats
- 3 seats on the Texas Supreme Court
- Dozens of local or state legislative races
Chicago Votes x Next Up Oregon
Forward Montana filed a lawsuit challenging their state on a bill that would have caused chaos by removing judges from pending court cases and decreasing accessibility of political activity for college students, and won!
✅ Make sure you’re prepared for your state’s first election this year by visiting our #VoteReady hub!
✅ Stay up to date on voting rights legislation and take action – How to Protect Our Freedom to Vote
✅ Check back to stay posted on local organizing in the Alliance Network