How did you feel when you received a hand written postcard?

Indivisible RI Rhode Island, Philip Graham, Postcards forVoters
Philip Graham, Postcards to Voters Coordinator

I make my Indivisible calls.  I attend office visits to our Senators and our Representative. I regularly attend rallies and local, congressional town halls.  And, I’m part of IndivisibleRI’s Advisory Board.

I feel I’m not doing enough.  I’m itchy to do more.  But what would have the best effect?  I’m waiting for the 2018 midterms to gear up, but in the meantime, what else to do?

Recently I came upon an article about an organization, Postcards for Voters, that seems like a smart way to continue the resistance.  Postcards for Voters will supply you with the addresses (but not the names) of registered Democratic voters in districts that are holding a special election.  You and your friends can write postcards to these Democratic voters, reminding them to vote in that upcoming election.  It’s a great way to get out the vote: one real person writes an actual postcard to actual registered and friendly voters, who may need a little nudge to remember to vote.  Off-season special elections have notoriously low voter turnout; maybe your postcard could put a Democratic candidate over the top.

Indivisible RI Rhode Island, Postcards to VotersAs writer Peter Wayne Moe states, “Even though the postcards . . . I send say the same thing an email or text could, the physicality of the mail—the dirt on the postcard, the stamp from the post office, the waterlogged letter carries with it something that the digital [email] simply can’t.”

Incoming political email, as we all know, can too easily be sent to trash.  The novelty of a postcard appearing in the mail chute, however, has to be picked up, handled, and read.  Because who receives good old fashioned actual mail these days?  A postcard from a stranger, with a welcome message, conveyed through real handwriting, might just stick in the mind.  It might even be put on a refrigerator door.

It’s a terrific way to help continue the 2017 Democratic wave into 2018.  It’s a way to get organized leading up to the crucial November midterms.  It’s a way to stave off helplessness and despair, while Special Counsel Robert Mueller digs up more and more dirt.  It’s a way to encourage your friends to get involved.  And if snacks are served at your postcard party, you get to counter the awful taste of stamp glue in your mouth.

GOOD NEWS!!
Postcards to Voters has good news—the response of people eager to counter to write postcards in support of Conor Lamb, a Democrat running to represent the 18th Congressional District in Pennsylvania, has been so overwhelming that PTV has run out of addresses of registered Democratic voters in that district!

But there are over 40 special elections and primaries coming up in the next five months, so there are many, many further opportunities for political postcard writing.

 REPLACE THIS DINO WITH A PROGRESSIVE DEM

Indivisible RI Rhode Island, Marie Newman, Postcards to VotersPostcards to Voters is now distributing addresses of voters in the 3rd Congressional District of Illinois.  A primary will be held there on March 20, to determine the Democratic candidate for the general election in November.  The candidate that PTV is supporting is Marie Newman, who is challenging the current Representative (in his 7th term), Dan Lipinksi.

Lipinski, a Democrat, voted against the Affordable Care Act.  He is also against the Right to Choose, and is against protections of undocumented immigrants living in the U.S.

Newman is a far more progressive Democrat.  Though she’s never run for office before, the former advertising executive has campaigned against bullying in the schools, and has been a spokesperson for the Illinois chapter of Moms Demand Action, an anti-gun group.  She already has the backing of NARAL, SEIU, EMILY’S List, and Senator Kirsten Gellibrand.  Significantly, two Democratic Representatives in the Illinois delegation (and therefore colleagues of Lipinski), Jan Schakowsky and Luís Gutierrez, support Marie Newman.

You can read more about the race here:
https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2018/02/house-democrats-illinois-primary-newman-lipinski/552599/
http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/politics/ct-met-seiu-endorsement-congress-newman-lipinski-20180202-story.html

According to Ballotpedia on the web, there are 48 special elections coming up, in 20 states, before the November midterms.  So, there will be a lot more opportunities to improve your handwriting on the small space of a postcard.

Want to write postcards on your own, or host a postcard writing party?  Email Postcards@TonyTheDemocrat.org to become an approved postcard writer.  And while you’re at it, visit the inspiring website https://postcardstovoters.org

Postcard to Voters Set-Up and Rules

Interested?
Write to Postcards@TonyTheDemocrat.org.  One of our volunteer Rapid Response Email Team members will reply to you soon.  

Are You already an Approved Postcard Writer?
Please help yourself to the immediate, convenient service of Abby the Address Bot to get your addresses by texting HELLO to (484) ASK-ABBY which is (484) 275-2229.  Abby will automatically send you an exact courtesy copy of the new addresses to your email address.  By using Abby for new addresses, you free us up to quickly help the new writers who necessarily require more time.  Thanks!

Are You New to Postcards to Voters?

If you are new, please take a moment to learn more about the grassroots Postcards to Voters program.
Whether you are writing on your own or with friends at a Postcards to Voters Party, the rules are meant to be easy (and shared). 

  • Legibly hand writepostcards to voters.
  • Use cards that are inclusive.Buy, print, or make postcards with images/graphics/photos and wording/quotes/slogans that are issue-neutral/benign/safe for a wide audience of recipients.
  • Mail completed postcards daily.Do not hold them to mail later.
  • Only sign first name or initials. Never include return address, your own email address, your lastname, or your social media handle or account name.
  • Only write to each voter once. Do not contact the voters again for any reason.
  • Cover addresses before taking photos. If you share digital photos of your cards on social media, always cover voters’ addresses.
  • Keep cards looking grassroots-like. Do not  print the candidate’s campaign’s logos/graphics/images/photos on the cards.
  • Stick to the talking points. 
  • Ask if you have questions.  
  • Have fun!

This Party is B.Y.O.P.P.

“Bring Your Own Postcards and Postage” is the operative phrase.  We furnish the voter addresses (but, not the voters’ names) from the latest data available from the respective Secretary of State or responsible authority for the election in question.  But, you must buy (or print) your own postcards and acquire a 34 cent stamp for each.  (34 cents is the current First-Class postage rate for postcards that meet the size and thickness requirements of the U.S.P.S.)

If you have any questions on Postcards to Voters or setting up your own Postcards to Voters Party, contact Philip Graham, IndivsiibleRI’s Postcards to Voters guru: Philip@IndivisibleRI.com

If you have any questions on Postcards to Voters or setting up your own Postcards to Voters Party, contact Philip Graham, IndivsiibleRI’s Postcards to Voters guru: Philip@IndivisibleRI.com

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