Harrisburg, PA — Everyday working people—young and old, urban and rural, Black, brown, and white—stepped up to deliver Biden the presidency, flipping red counties like Northampton from red to blue. PA Stands Up members and volunteers worked tirelessly over the last few months to elect new leaders who are committed to building a Pennsylvania — and an America — that works for all of us. More than 8,000 volunteers with the organization made 6,869,934 calls and sent 1,803,935 texts to voters to build a multiracial working class movement that would defeat Donald Trump in 2020 and build a Pennsylvania — and an America — that works for all of us.
"Thousands of working class people of all races across Pennsylvania and around the country volunteered their evenings, weekends, and holidays to deliver the presidency for Biden. Now it's time for Biden to deliver for working people," said Hannah Laurison, Executive Director of PA Stands Up. "As we talked with voters across the state, we heard again and again about the struggles their families face as they've gotten sick, lost jobs, and struggled to pay their bills. These aren't small challenges, and tinkering around the edges won't fix them. Black voters, young voters, and women turned out for Biden because our communities are hurting. Now, Biden must pursue bold policy solutions at the scale of the crisis our communities face."
The work that PA Stands Up volunteers across Pennsylvania have been doing in recent weeks often goes unnoticed amidst interviews with Democratic Party leaders and big dollar ad buys. But it's likely those 407,913 conversations that made the difference for Biden in Pennsylvania, not the ad blitz many party leaders poured money into. PA Stands Up has extensively utilized a novel approach to voter outreach called "deep canvassing," which involves extended conversations with voters, not just about the candidates, but about the issues they care about most. Studies conducted by political scientists Joshua Kalla and David Broockman, together with our national partners at People's Action, show that the approach is 102x more effective than traditional presidential persuasion efforts.
"I got involved with Pennsylvania Stands Up because I wanted to take more action for racial justice in this country and in my own community," said Morgan Tucker, a volunteer deep canvass campaign and member of Lehigh Valley Stands Up. "Deep canvassing has enabled me to have meaningful conversations with my community members that I may not have had otherwise. One young Puerto Rican woman I spoke with was leaning towards voting for Donald Trump. But when we started talking, we found common ground: both of us wanted to see politicians on both sides in this country do more to tackle racism and income inequality. We agreed that neither candidate is perfect. After I shared why I was supporting Joe Biden and Kamala Harris, and that I was planning to be a part of holding them accountable to make policies that create more racial equity once they are sworn in, she said she was leaning more towards voting for them as well."
Millions of Americans of all stripes united to defeat Trump. Especially critical were working class people and young people of all races who turned out in historically high numbers. The Democratic Party has been bleeding out working class voters like these for decades. Now Joe Biden and Democrats in Congress have a critical window to deliver big for working people or risk losing their support once again.
“My community in Philly is struggling with a lot right now: Covid, the police killing of Walter Wallace Jr, food insecurity, a violently underfunded public school system, and much more. But through it all, our community has come together to support each other and make our voices heard," said Tammer Ibrahim, a volunteer leader with Reclaim Philadelphia and chair of Reclaim’s Housing Justice Task Force. “We know that America is for all of us. We are ready to ensure that a Biden administration gets working right away on a People's Bailout relief package that supports working people of all races at the scale that's needed right now. It should include robust funding to expand public healthcare, regular direct cash payments, cancellation of rent and mortgages and state spending including transportation and green infrastructure. And it should set us up to create good, union jobs in the public sector as Americans continue searching for work."
While it's clear that Biden has won the presidency, tens of thousands of ballots still need to be counted to determine the winner of down ballot races. PA Stands Up will continue working with dozens of community organizations, unions, and faith communities to demand that every vote be counted. Tomorrow, celebrations and count every vote rallies are planned in cities and small towns around the state. Learn more at http://vote.pa/events.
Please contact Jacob Swenson-Lengyel for more information at 773-571-0343 or by email here.