Dear BID Friends:
As the year comes to a close, we would like to express how proud and grateful we are for what we have accomplished together in 2022.
With Warnock’s historic re-election in the Georgia runoff, we are ending the year on a positive note. We successfully protected our democracy from election deniers and helped elect qualified candidates in swing states, while expanding the Democratic Senate majority, assuming the Arizona Senator continues to caucus with the Dems.
There are difficult days ahead, but our efforts – combined with thousands of volunteers and grassroot organizations like ours all around the country – continue to make a difference. Nancy Pelosi recently gave a shout out to the “VIP’s” or “Volunteers in Politics” on the ground, who influenced the outcomes in key battleground races.
As BID reflects on the year 2022, we are more convinced than ever that our thoughtful and strategic initiatives and election actions continue to help move the country in a more positive and hopeful direction.
During this mid-term year election cycle, motivated by national events and new voter suppression legislation, we worked diligently to protect voter rights, urging individuals to get registered and vote, either by mail or in person. We also created connections and opportunities for people to learn more about election cycles and the importance of state races to our democratic process. As the power of state institutions is often overlooked, we brought attention to the role of the Secretary of State, State Supreme Court and State legislatures. Together, we created a village to tackle tough issues through a number of election actions:
Remembrance and Call to Action
In response to the school mass shooting in Uvalde, we participated in an event on June 5th sponsored by Leonia Action and Bergen/Passaic Moms Demand Action, which also included representatives of Students Demand Action and BID. Each had a voice in speaking to the need for common sense gun control legislation and changes in composition at all levels of governments to help protect our children and communities from gun violence.
Protect the Vote: Preserve Our Democracy
Because of the new election laws passed in the post 2020 election cycle – designed to suppress the vote of minorities and people of color – BID organized a series of events to help protect our fundamental right to vote. The first, held in coordination with The Action Network NJ on April 20th, was a letter writing campaign that appealed to select individuals, encouraging them to register and vote in advance of the New Jersey Primary. Dedicated volunteers prepared registration materials and wrote personal notes to hundreds of individuals in the top 10% of those MOST LIKELY to lean Democratic in District 3 (Representative Andy Kim), District 7 (Representative Tom Malinowski), and District 11 (Mikie Sherrill).
Postcard Writing Campaigns
To encourage voter engagement, BID conducted active postcard-writing campaigns in May, June and September targeted to swing states with key Senate and state races. These carefully chosen initiatives in Arizona, Georgia, New Hampshire, Nevada and Michigan successfully contributed to fighting off Maga election-denying candidates and strengthening our democracy.
Between attendees at all events – in person and those who picked up cards to prepare and mail from home – we processed several thousand cards.
All of these initiatives, in combination with those of thousands of organizations across the country like ours, demonstrate the commitment on the ground by thousands upon thousands of volunteers to protect our fundamental right to have all of our voices heard. Postcards to Swing States, who we partnered with, issued 7,000,000 cards nationwide and ran out as a result of overwhelming demand!
Focus for Democracy
As the election drew closer, BID partnered with Larchmont/Mamaroneck Indivisible, a powerful community activism group in Westchester, to present a State Races zoom meeting on September 14. Presenters included Aaron Frank, the Founder of Focus for Democracy (which identities programs that have the highest impact for winning critical state races), and State Representative Kyra Harris Bolden, a Michigan Supreme Court candidate, who explained why the state Supreme Court and other state elected bodies matter so significantly on both state and national levels. The goal of the evening was to educate people about how critical state races are in protecting our democracy. Often overlooked, state offices – legislatures, supreme courts, and Secretaries of State – are at the center of protecting our elections and making sure all our votes are counted and recognized.
In closing, we want to again thank you for your participation in our journey together this past year. It’s been a challenging, yet personally rewarding 6 years since our inception in February 2017. Looking back, we have much to be proud of.
With gratitude, we look forward to engaging you again later in 2023 in advance of the next critical election season in 2024.
With warmest regards,
Lori Sackler, Mary Hubert and the entire BID Steering Committee