Post Election Victory Report

2020

From Resistance to Victory

After 4 years of profound harm we have ejected the criminal Donald Trump from the White House. With the incredible support of our movement allies, our comrades in the labor and immigrant justice movements, and individual donors from 48 states as well as Washington D.C. and Puerto Rico, CASA in Action deployed our largest ever single-cycle election program, executing a $2.1 million dollar campaign across Virginia and Pennsylvania. Our goals were simple: mobilize Latinx and Black voters to raise their voices and elect leaders who are committed to racial, social, economic, and immigrant justice. 

In Pennsylvania, victory required mobilizing immigrant, working class, Black and the thousands of new Puerto Rican residents of the Commonwealth who settled in our turf following Hurricane Maria in 2018. In Virginia, our 2019 work helped open a new chapter of progressive dominance in state governance and in 2020 we began the work of deepening and strengthening our progressive majority through an explosion of new Black and brown voices coming into their power, all with the help of our allies at the Working Families Party.

But winning these elections is just the beginning. Now our members look ahead to the new frontiers for justice made possible by this hard work, and to critical races in Georgia, Virginia, and Pennsylvania right around the corner. But before we look ahead, we look back at what made this incredible victory possible…

The Story of A People-Powered Win

CASA in Action’s political programming is centered around the struggle for justice for Black, brown, and immigrant communities. In Virginia, a team of Hampton Roads and outer NOVA canvassers dug deep to move voters this year with an eye to statewide elections in 2021. President-elect Joe Biden won because of the millions of Black, Indigenous, Latino, and Asian American and Pacific Islander voters who turned out in record numbers to choose a future where we all can thrive.

CASA in Action mobilized 1.2 million voters in Pennsylvania and Virginia. A few highlights we’re celebrating include:

Making 661,000 calls,

knocking on 52,000 voter doors

and sending 525,000 texts.

Running targeted digital ads on five Spanish-language radio stations in Pennsylvania

for a total reach of 1,404,244.

Our campaign was financially supported by over 3000 donors from across the nation!

We had donations from 48 states, D.C., and Puerto Rico.

The election of Joe Biden as the next President and Kamala Harris as the first woman, first Black, first Asian American, and next Vice President is thanks to the dedication, courage, and tireless work of our communities. It was our grassroots organizing that won us this election and will lead us into the future our country needs.

We are in a momentous time where millions of Black and brown voters cast their ballots in unprecedented numbers to make their voice heard. People of color are an unstoppable force resilient in the face of constant attacks on our families, our jobs, and our health. No matter the income, race, background, or education level, our votes decide who shall lead our country.

Alonzo Washington

CASA in Action Executive Director

Since January, CASA in Action’s PA field team of 70 full time canvassers conducted conversations with voters throughout our core turf both in person and on the phones, and through texts and relational organizing tools.

Jazmine Cheeseman, a life-long resident of Hampton and CASA canvasser hit the doors relentlessly with a simple and powerful message, “This election is important because of my four-year old Ashli, and the importance of making a change. Right now, the main thing is not knowing what we are doing about the coronavirus with kids. I want someone in the White House looking out for these children.”

Victory by the Numbers

Pennsylvania and Virginia voted in greater numbers for Biden than they did for Clinton in 2016, but in every county where CASA in Action worked this cycle, the overall D vote share shifted by a larger margin than the state average. Bottom line? CASA in Action and Latinx voters drove the change that delivered Pennsylvania for Joe Biden.

Turnout by CASA in Action County

Voter Contact Rates by Modality

*Statewide contact totals for PA are larger than the sum of county totals because they also include calls and texts to other PA Latinx voters outside of our primary turf, most notably including outreach to over 63k Latinx Philadelphia voters.

Empowering Black and Brown Voters

Utilizing our deep community connections and expertise at reaching immigrant, Latino, and working class voters, CASA in Action designed special treatments to target, persuade, and mobilize our voters, and those efforts paid off in our much higher contact rates across all modalities for these voters. In Virginia, Black voters constituted 69% of our voters engaged, and in Pennsylvania, Black and Latino voters represented 48% of voters engaged.

Digital Outreach Performance

Boricua Power!

Knowing the absolutely critical power of the Puerto Rican vote this election cycle, CASA in Action took specific care to target these voters. We know that tens of thousands of Puerto Ricans came to Pennsylvania following Hurricane Maria in 2018, and while the majority settled in Philadelphia, CASA in Action’s turf in more rural South Central PA was home to the second largest share of new Puerto Rican arrivals to the state. By far our most successful digital ads were those targeting Puerto Ricans:

Ads like this one, reminding Puerto Ricans of the indelible images of Trump’s casual indifference to their suffering after Hurricane Maria were our most effective digital ads of the cycle in Pennsylvania.

Ad reach:

151,615

people

Clicks to CASAIA site:

7,452

clicks

Diving Deeper: CASA in Action Keys to Success

Latino Voting Power

CASA in Action made one overall bold pronouncement about the 2020 election that has proven 100% true. We’ve said one message loud and clear consistently since February: Latino voters will decide the outcome of this election. As a post-election day report from Equis Labs stated:

“Latinas - one of our big bets this cycle - have shown up beyond expectation. According to Catalist, Latina working class voters (non-college) cast 589k early votes in 2016 and in 2020 they’ve already cast [as of Nov 2nd) 1.8M+ And... the most votes and highest share of Dem support came from Latinas 18-29. 450k votes + 75% Dem support.”

This data tracks well with CASA in Action’s internal metrics - 80.6% of our Latinx voters canvassed and 81% of our Black voters canvassed indicated strong or very strong support for Joe Biden, compared with only 76.8% support among all voters and 73% among white voters. Latinx voters in our turf were also more likely (40%) than the average voter (35.3%) to take advantage of new vote by mail laws in PA, second only to Black voters (40.5%) in terms of demographic support for VBM.

We already knew that since the last presidential election, there were 300,000 new Latino voters in Pennsylvania, and we know that based on the results we have seen that without those folks coming and participating, maybe the result wouldn't have been the same.

Thais Carrero

PA State Director, CASA in Action

Tapping into the Power of Latinx Women

Latinx communities are among the lowest turnout voters compared to other racial groups. However, Latinx women have both higher turnout rates and tend to be more progressive than Latinx men. CASA in Action used the latest research, sophisticated modeling and deep relationships within the community to tap into the power of Latinx women to move their households and social networks to vote and vote Blue. CASA in Action directly contacted over 150k Latinx women throughout PA and VA and layered targeted social media content on top of these direct conversations reaching Latinx women on Facebook. In fact, during our GOTV phase in PA, CASA engaged over 120k Latinx women, constituting 36.75% of our total voter engagements in the state (by far our largest single demographic segment for GOTV). This work was not only crucial to securing a victory for Biden in PA, but it is an investment in expanding the electorate and building a deep relational organizing infrastructure.

CASA’s work to integrate sophisticated political programming with long haul organizing strategies ensures that the work we have done in 2020 to win the election translates into power our communities on the ground to make those wins count both through issue advocacy and through greater political power that will make a decisive difference in 2021 and beyond.

What’s Next: Completing the 2020 Victory + Hitting the Ground Running in 2021

We at CASA in Action have been preparing for months to double down on our victories in Virginia in 2019 by electing a new progressive Governor, Lieutenant Gov, Attorney General, and a new slate of progressive legislators to serve the Commonwealth. We’ll be fighting all the way from the primary starting in February and we need your support. But before we can get there, we first need to complete our 2020 victory…

That’s why we’re proud to announce that CASA in Action is headed to Georgia to win the Senate! Working with the incredible partners already on the ground in the state, our teams have been invited to come and help turn out the immigrant and Latino vote in Georgia ahead of the Senate runoff election January 5th. Are you supporting electoral work in this runoff election? Let’s connect!

For both our work in Georgia and in Virginia, we’re very lucky to be guided by the leadership of CASA in Action’s new and first-ever executive director, Alonzo Washington.

Introducing our New (and First!) Executive Director

Inspired by his mother and his lived experiences, Alonzo brings a passion, a strategic vision and tenacity to his work at CASA in Action. “It’s not enough to simply elect progressives to office – it’s not enough to have a brilliant and thoughtful policy vision for change- those things are important but they are simply the prerequisite for the possibility of success – it’s not enough and it won’t be enough – until we build a truly multiracial, cross-class, populist movement of people that have the power not just to elect their representatives on election day but to make those elections count. That’s what we’re building at CASA in Action.”

Alonzo Washington is the new and first ever executive director of CASA in Action – a multiracial, immigrant-centered, pro-Black and unapologetically progressive C4 that combines political savvy with a commitment to long haul organizing and shifting the relations of power in MD, VA, PA and beyond. Before taking on the helm of CASA in Action, Alonzo oversaw the community development and federal policy shop for CASA in Action’s 501c(3) sister organization CASA.

The oldest of six children, Alonzo was born and raised in Prince George’s County. He learned first hand what it means for the system to fail the vulnerable. Spending much of his youth in and out of homeless shelters, Alonzo learned his earliest lessons watching his brilliant and formidable mother fight to raise and protect their family. Alonzo went on to become the first member of his family to attend and graduate college. Alonzo has also served as a member of the Maryland House of Delegates since being elected in 2012, where he has been a champion on progressive issues including criminal justice, police accountability, expanding access to housing and eliminating poverty. In January of 2020, Alonzo was appointed to serve as the vice-chair of the House Ways and Means Committee and the Chair on Education.

In 2020, Alonzo oversaw CASA in Action's successful Latinx and BiPOC electoral program in PA that played a decisive role in turning PA blue and laying the groundwork to continue to build long term power in PA. In 2021, Alonzo will be focused on building out and executing CASA in Action’s multi-year, multi-state vision in VA, MD, PA, GA and beyond.

For more information on CASA in Action, our Georgia 2020 Runoff election plans, or our Virginia 2021 primary and general election plans, please contact CASA in Action Director of Development Jesse Steele, jsteele@casainaction.org