This is a deep dive into what each one of us can do to help win the Georgia runoffs on January 5th. I’ve aggregated a lot of information from other sources into this story. I hope that you find it useful. If you do, please share it widely. We need to win these races.
This is a comprehensive update from the earlier version This is how we are going to win the GA runoffs - a (nearly) complete guide.
I. Georgia Democrats need support, not saviors
In the 2020 election, Georgia Democrats outperdormed literally every other state. They delivered 16 Electoral Votes for Joe Biden, flipped a House seat and made gains in both statehouses. They did this by building a vast network of candidates, party organizations, outside organizations, volunteers, civic leaders. They did this by listening to their communities and by finding better ways to communicate with them. Their stuff works — they have proven that. Because their stuff works, they don’t need saviors. They don’t need new policies, they don’t need new messages, they don’t need new people. On the contrary, these might actually more harm than good.
The guiding principle of the rest of this guide follows from this insight: It shows you ways to support the existing winning ways of Georgia Democrats. And it takes the ‘Let Locals Lead’ principle to heart.
II. Basics and key dates
- Regular Senate election for a full term: Democrat Jon Ossoff vs incumbent David Perdue
- Special Senate election for the remaining two years of retired Johnny Isakson (R): Democrat Reverend Raphael Warnock vs appointed incumbent Kelly Loeffler
- Right now: Request runoff absentee ballots
- Dec 7th: Registration deadline for new voters — register here
- Dec 14th: Early in person voting begins — find your voting site here
- Jan 1st: Early in person voting ends
- Jan 5th: Election Day— find your voting site here
III. Key people and organizations
It is important to stress that Georgia Democrats have build a vast network of campaigns, party infrastructure, outside organizations, leaders and supporters over the last few years. All of them have been instrumental in turning Georgia blue. These are merely the most important for the runoffs.
Jon Ossoff for Senate — Website ActBlue Volunteer Twitter Facebook Instagram
The campaign of Jon Ossoff.
Warnock for Georgia — Website ActBlue Volunteer Twitter Facebook Instagram
The campaign of Reverend Raphael Warnock.
Daniel for Georgia — Website ActBlue Volunteer Twitter Facebook Instagram
The campaign of Daniel Blackman for Georgia’s Public Service Commission, the third race on the runoff ballot.
Fair Fight — Website ActBlue Volunteer Twitter Facebook Instagram
Stacey Abrams’ organization. Engages in a wide variety of voter mobilization and vote protection.
The New Georgia Project — Website ActBlue Volunteer Twitter Facebook Instagram
Main voter registration organization in Georgia. Has already registered half a million Georgians. Founded by Stacey Abrams.
Democratic Party of Georgia — Website ActBlue Volunteer Twitter Facebook
The Democratic Party of Georgia. Voter files, poll watchers, ballot curing and much more. Umbrella organization for ther County Committees.
Stacey Abrams — Twitter Facebook Instagram
Unofficial leader of Gerogia Democrats. Former Georgia House Minority Leader and 2018 candidate for Georgia Governor.
Nikema Williams — Twitter DPGChairTwitter Facebook Instagram
GA State Senator & newly elected to the US House for GA-05 (John Lewis’ old seat). Chair of the Democratic Party of Georgia.
There are literally dozens of worthy donation recipients for the runoffs. You cannot go wrong if you donate to the campaigns, a Democratic Party organization or one of the outside organizations listed here. I would however dissuade you from contributing to any national or out-of-state organization fundraising with a promise to help in the runoffs. Again: The people in Georgia know what they are doing, their stuff works. They need support, but no saviors.
A lot of money will flow into this race. Due to their high national visibility, most of this will go to the two Senate campaigns and Fair Fight. A lot of the other organizations will still be underfunded. If you’ve read this far in this diary, I therefore implore you, somebody who takes a very deep dive into this topic, to donate to these other organizations. Your dollars will probably go a longer way.
County Party Committees
There are 159 counties in Georgia, many of them hace Democratic County Committee. This is where many local organizers are doing their work. They know their communities, because the people are their neighbours. They can do highly targeted work to reach Democratic voters in blue, purple and red areas. They are all coming off an election with local, state and federal races, their resources are depleted. Working under pandemic conditions is making their work a lot more costly than in other times. Donating to these County Committees would help tremendously (all county names contain links to their respective ActBlue pages):
- Democratic County Committees of Cobb, DeKalb, Fulton and Gwinnett — the most important counties in the Atlanta area — link to split a donation between these three County Committees
- Democratic County Committees of Athens-Clarke, Chatham, Cherokee, Clayton, Coweta, Camden, Douglas, Fannin, Fayette, Floyd, Forsyth, Gilmer, Glynn, Grady, Hall, Henry, Houston, Jackson, Jefferson, Lumpkin, Muscogee, Oconee, Peach, Thomas, Union, Upson, Wayne, Whitfield — link to split a donation between these 27 County Committees
Outside organizations, not affiliated with the campaigns or the party, are very important for the Democratic success in Georgia. They often target specific communities, that tend to be heavily Democratic. This list is based on Stacey Abrams’/Fair Fight’s endorsement.
Outside organizations, PACs (donations only by U.S. citizens or lawfully admitted permanent residents) — Donate to all listed organizations
Outside oganizations, non-PACs (donations by everybody) — Donate to all listed organizations
A note of caution: Many fundraising links by third parties to “support the Ossoff/Warnock campaigns” will lead to ActBlue pages that by default split your donation between the campaings and the third party. If you want to make sure that your entire donation goes to GA, you have to manually change this.
If you want to fundraise within your social circle, it is probably best to stick to the campaigns and maybe Fair Fight. I propose to use the following ActBlue pages, that are promoted by the campaigns and Fair Fight.
There are many opportunities to volunteer, both in-state and from anywhere. Please remember the “Let Locals Lead” rule and engage in activities organized or at least endorsed by local leaders. Also, please don’t contact any organization with inquiries about volunteer opportunities. They are working on it and will make them public as soon as possible. Answering you will just delay their important work.
Volunteer opportunities with the key organizations
Volunteer opportunities aggregators
Write Postcards or Letters
If you write postcards, please check and respect the specific guidelines for the respective campaigns.
You can support the candidates and listed organizations on social media. The easiest form of this is following their accounts and liking their posts. This will give them additional visibility. Commenting and/or sharing their respective posts will have an even bigger effect on visibility.
If you are interested in doing even more, check these resources:
If you have voter contact, please always remember that you might have a very different perspective than the voter, especially if you are out-of-state. Example: You are probably involved because control of the Senate hangs in the balance, but voters might be a lot more concerned about what their Senators can and will do for their local community. Again, let locals lead and follow their instructions.
VII. Moving to Georgia
You might feel tempted to move to Georgia for the next two months, but you probably shouldn’t. As noted before, there is a lot of infrastructure in place, including many people on the ground who know their communities. If you drop in from out-of-state, they have to spend time getting you up to speed and you will just be a lot less effective than locals. Even if it is less exciting (for you), you should donate the money you would spend on the trip and volunteer remotely.
What about moving to Georgia and voting in the runoffs? If you are actually moving to Georgia long-term in the next few weeks, you can register to vote once you moved, registration deadline is Dec 7th. But do not register unless you are really moving there long-term — that would actually be a crime.
VIII. Ideas and suggestions
Do you have ideas and suggestions how to run a successful campaign? Great, find the next race in your area and apply them. Seriously, please, do not bother the fine people in Georgia with them now. They are working around the clock to implement what they have learned over the last years, this is not the time for advice.
Thank you for reading this guide. Please, get involved and let locals lead. Together, we will win this!
If you have any corrections or additions to this guide, please let me know in the comments. I will try to continually update this guide as we get closer to January 5th.