The countdown to the Midterm Elections is now in the single digits. Depending on where you live, early voting may have already begun.
We at Incite believe the importance of this election is impossible to overstate. The future of our democratic values is very much on the ballot. More tangibly, if you’re upbeat about recent progress on the IRA, the CHIPS Act, the IIJA, and other recent federal policy wins, you’ll need to vote for the momentum to continue. It’s more critical than ever that each of us show up and vote.
First, the not-so-good news. The Cook Political Report argues the fundamentals favor Republicans. And the latest FiveThirtyEight data shows while Democrats have a slight chance to win the Senate, they will probably lose the House. Meanwhile, there are countless far-right candidates running for offices up-and-down the ballot who have a real shot of winning, and yet who deny the results of the 2020 election, who deny women the ability to make choices about their bodies, and who, if given the opportunity, will change the most basic rules of our democratic system to protect their power. The stakes are high, and the odds are not great.
Now, the better news. Regardless of what the latest polling shows, your actions between now and next week can determine the outcome. And whether or not we show up can make a major difference for thousands of candidates running for critical local offices. So this Incite Post is focused on what you can do by Election Day to make a real impact.
Here’s where we suggest you start.
1. Make your plan to vote.
Election Day is Tuesday November 8.
Where is your polling location? When will you vote, and how will you get there? Which candidates are on your ballot, and who do you plan to support? Are there any ballot measures to consider?
While these questions might seem basic, making a plan ahead of time for when, how, and for what you’ll vote makes a real difference. Take 20 minutes right now and make your plan. We’ll wait while you calendar and look up your ballot. For resources on your nearest polling location and what’s on your ballot, check out Incite-backed Vote.org.
2. Ask your friends and family about their plan to vote.
Evidence shows you can help get out the vote by asking these same questions of your friends and family. People are more likely to vote if they plan for it, and if they’re asked to by someone close to them who they trust. This idea forms the basis of relational organizing.
So take another 30 minutes and talk to your friends and family. Ask them when and how they plan to vote. Ask if they know who is on their ballot. Ask if they need assistance getting to the polls. If they haven’t made a concrete plan yet, encourage them to.
If you’d like to roll up your sleeves further, it’s not too late to give time this weekend to help get out the vote by making phone calls and sending text messages to potential voters.
Check out Vote Save America or Swing Left’s The Last Weekend initiative. Better yet, find a candidate who inspires you, and sign up directly with their campaign.
If you want your dollars to have the greatest impact, the best time to give is well ahead of Election Day.
But with this in mind – here’s an extra credit opportunity. There are causes like Arena and Fair Fight who are playing the long game. They’re building robust political infrastructure designed to persist between election cycles. If you’d like to make a donation now, consider giving to an organization or cause focused on building for the future.
Here’s what gets us motivated to make time during this intense fall of 2022 to vote. We think about the millions of people in the Ukraine who are literally fighting for their right to be free. Sometimes, the battle chooses us. And that’s why we’re choosing the ballot this weekend.