The 5th Congressional District Democratic Committee’s annual regional blowout party is Saturday, Sept. 30, from 5-10pm in Lynchburg, and we’re all invited! The Committee just announced a great speakers lineup: Senator Creigh Deeds and Dr. Cameron Webb. The ActBlue ticket link is https://secure.actblue.com/donate/2023-extravaganza . For more information please contact 5thcdchair.va firstname.lastname@example.org or phone 434-253-0824.
Our new head of Voter Protection, Jeremy Jones, is looking to expand the VoPro Team to not only cover all the Charlottesville precincts in November, but also hopefully to help out in some other key VA races across the state, so everyone who’s eligible to vote gets to do so.
Voter protection requires a lot of behind-the-scenes work, so there are many ways you can pitch in. The main three:
1. Observe polling place operations and use an online system to file reports of any problems with the State Democratic Party’s boiler room of lawyers ready to handle them. You don’t have to be a lawyer to do this! The only prerequisites are:
- Taking a 2-hour training session before Election Day (since it’s all about making sure the rules are followed, step #1 is having lawyers explain what the rules are!).
- On Election Day you must work either the entire long exhilarating day (5am to 8pm!) or a more moderately thrilling half-day shift, either 5am-1pm or Noon-8pm.
- Being able to keep your cool and speak diplomatically if any problem(s) should arise.
Two examples of issues last year’s team helped with:
- Explaining the new same-day registration and provisional voting rules to make sure that all such votes could be validated and counted.
- Dealing with a traffic accident in front of Tonsler Precinct that temporarily blocked voter access.
2. “Chase and cure” (remote work, flexible schedule over the six weeks of early voting) — after a bit of training, help voters fix problems with their mail-in absentee ballots so those ballots can be counted (e.g. when someone gives a PO Box mailing address rather than the required street address).
3. Help staff the Voter Protection Hotline (also remote) — answer problem report phone calls and then try to resolve those problems. This also requires training.
If you might be willing to get involved in these kinds of efforts, please contact Jeremy: email@example.com
75 people turned out on July 30 and did have a lot of fun… and got to hear good, short speeches from most of our local candidates!
The Albemarle Dems were super well-organized and had everything running smoothly and brought plenty of good food; thank you Karen Combs and crew!
John McLaren coordinated getting gas grills (thanks to Rodney Beard and Jules Tatum for providing the equipment and transportation) and Martha Donnelly (game buyer extraordinaire), Emily Little, and Dan Doernberg organized the games, with cornhole provided by Josh Throneburg and Jason and Tom Vandever.
Erin Monaghan took the games and miscellaneous other things to our storage locker for the next picnic (everyone said we should do this again, and hold more joint events with Albemarle!).
Come have fun and meet all our November candidates!
Date & Time: Sunday, July 30, 2pm-?? (original 6/26 was rained out)
Where: Darden Towe Park Picnic Shelter — Enter the Park, turn right at the T intersection, take the road to the end to reach the picnic shelter and Dog Park).
We provide: Hotdogs/Burgers/Vegan food options + games for adults and kids (we’re bringing cornhole, balls for soccer/kickball, bocce/petanque, and bubbles for little ones; feel free to bring more of the above or your own favorite picnic games/activities!).
You bring: Non-alcoholic beverages, a side dish or dessert, 1 chair per person, family and friends (kid-friendly!), and your Democratic Spirit!
Food, games, meet candidates, and lots of Dems… what’s not to like? Bring family and friends (especially those who aren’t as politically engaged!) and help spread the word!
RSVPs (optional but helpful) to: firstname.lastname@example.org