Harrisburg, PA — PA Stands Up members and volunteers have been working 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. That outreach resulted in 407,913 conversations with voters to defeat Donald Trump and elect 27 endorsed champions to the PA Legislature.
"As we talked with voters across the state, we heard again and again that everyday people are ready for a Pennsylvania that works for all of us," said Hannah Laurison, Executive Director of PA Stands Up. "Over the last few weeks, voters have turned out in record numbers to cast their ballot for new leaders. They've seen how Donald Trump and his allies in Harrisburg have failed working people as our families get sick, lose our jobs, and struggle to pay the bills. We may not know the final results tonight, but we're very optimistic about the outcome. And our members are going to bring the same energy they brought in making 8.6 million voter contacts to rallies across the state to demand every last vote be counted, quickly and accurately."
The work that PA Stands Up volunteers across Pennsylvania have been doing in recent weeks often goes unnoticed amidst a boisterous president and big dollar ad buys. But it could well make the difference once all the votes have been counted. 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."
Due to COVID-19, millions of voters chose to mail in ballots rather than vote in person. That means that the results of the election will not be known until all mail ballots are counted, which is expected to take some time. Tonight and in the days that follow, PA Stands Up members and volunteers will be working with people across the state to demand that we count every vote in a timely manner.
Already our Lancaster Stands Up chapter has mobilized public pressure following an announcement from Lancaster County Commissioners Josh Parsons and Ray D'Agostino that they would be refusing to count ballots received before November 6, as required.
"People in Lancaster have been through a lot in the last several months: Covid, a police killing of a young man of color, challenges with virtual schooling, and more. But through it all, we've seen our community come together to make our voices heard," said Eliza Booth Lead Organizer and Co-Founder of Lancaster Stands Up. "Our voices will be heard and our votes counted. Voters decide who our elected representatives are—not politicians like Commissioners Josh Parson and Ray D'Agostino. It’s not complicated. They need to follow the current guidance and count every vote in as timely a manner as possible.
Adding to attempts to interfere with the election in Lancaster, Senate Leader Joe Scarnati (R-25) and Majority Leader Jake Corman (R-34) continued the campaign to undermine confidence in the vote count by calling on Secretary of State Kathy Boockvar to resign.
Tomorrow, dozens of community groups, unions, and faith communities across the state are planning to stand together to demand every vote be counted.
“America is for all of us. Most of us believe everyone counts. Now, we're coming together to make sure every vote is counted," said Hannah Laurison. "No matter what kind of hogwash politicians spout off, voters choose who will lead us, politicians don't get to choose their voters. We won't let any politicians try to bully and cheat Pennsylvania voters. We are ready to support local election workers across the state as they work to rapidly and accurately count every vote. And then we're looking forward to getting to work on the things Pennsylvanians need: quality healthcare, good paying union jobs, and rent relief."