WISCONSIN–On Wednesday, November 9, 2016 the world learned that Donald Trump had become the first Republican candidate for President to secure Wisconsin’s electoral votes since 1984. On that day, For Our Future Wisconsin dedicated itself anew to permanent, ongoing organizing to build progressive political power that would ensure Wisconsin ‘went Blue’ in 2020.
Ever since – all 1,455 days between then and Election Day 2020 – our team had boots on the ground. Organizing, contacting voters, running an aggressive digital program, expanding our commitment to relational organizing, and ultimately, adapting to the realities of campaigning in a pandemic.
All told, we held 250,000 one-on-one conversations with Wisconsinites through over 2 million phone calls, 2 million texts, and 220,000 door knocks.
“None of us have ever experienced an election cycle like this one,” remarked For Our Future Wisconsin State Director Peter Drummond, following the projection that the Biden-Harris ticket would win Wisconsin. “We could not be prouder of our team and the broader progressive movement in Wisconsin for never losing sight of the importance of this work and ability to adapt amid a pandemic. Meeting voters where they are, listening to their concerns, and channeling their desire for change is difficult work. But, it’s a lot easier to do when you build relationships over time and have an ongoing presence in communities.”
For Our Future Wisconsin helped power progressive victories in non-partisan spring elections, special elections, and the 2018 midterm elections through deep canvassing, relational organizing, and innovative digital organizing techniques.As the coronavirus emerged, the group reimagined those tactics and shifted to socially-distant communication with voters.
For Our Future is particularly proud of our outreach to convert progressive voters into COVID-safe, absentee, and early voters. Our voter contact program included the majority of progressive voters who converted to early voters in Dane, Milwaukee, La Crosse, St. Croix, Polk, Portage and Monroe counties. Statewide, For Our Future Wisconsin communicated with nearly half of the likely progressives who cast an early ballot in Wisconsin.
“Holding President Trump accountable for his failure to take the COVID-19 pandemic seriously in a state as evenly divided as ours would not have been possible without the unprecedented level of collaboration we’ve seen across the progressive movement this year,” noted Drummond. “The ability to quickly pivot towards layered communication to targeted voters which helped drive the explosion in absentee vote-by-mail by progressives was crucial to securing Wisconsin’s electoral votes.”