Here's the thing- many experts don't think transformative change is possible until it happens. Countless folks in positions of power told us Georgia wasn't a real battleground- as recently as last fall, but consistently in 2012, 2014, 2016 and throughout the Abrams campaign.
Nearly every local & nat'l expert said GA Dems had to get 30% white support bc voters of color could never close the gap. Warnock & Ossoff got a record-breaking 27% of whites combined w/huge support and turnout levels by all voters of color. (Read the NYT piece for more on this)
I was told at one point in 2016 that "the white people are easier in North Carolina". In the early part of the decade we didn't pitch a full state flip, we focused on building local wins in the state legislature, moving the needle on registration and civic engagement basics.
The political data industrial complex is not built to have vision, to see what is possible are to know the nuances of each state, and I implore political data experts to wield their extreme power judiciously. Our work has always been data driven-
looking holistically at populations, not just the electorate now, but population trends, unregistered numbers- combined w/deep local knowledge which shines light, for example, on where the census didn't reach and where it erased communities that very much exist and are growing.
The data and consulting experts for the most part shot us down every step of the way with very notable exceptions (see: Tom Bonier).

Part of this is the anti-Blackness of the Democratic industrial complex, which plays out in many ways
and was a major reason that GA wasn't taken seriously; Black Georgians were not seen to be as valuable for understanding or courting as white suburban women.

I am a booster for the Sun Belt, but I reject the idea that we should give up on midwestern or other "red" states.
We must create our own reality, grounded in an in-depth analysis of the data- not just who's voting now but who is not, and fight to build our local parties. We know Dems at their best are the best at fighting for and representing ALL people,
and we should build the diverse coalitions required to do so everywhere. Success will look different state to state, and that is OK.

I don't mean to beat up on Nate Cohn- whose work I regularly read, learn from and appreciate. My point is the data and analytics folks,
and especially those who consult for campaigns, committees and lefty orgs, have value to add, but they cannot alone drive strategy. They are an important tool in the tool box, but donors, influencers & decision-makers in our party have over-relied on them,
stopping Democrats from having and executing a bolder and long term strategy. Which erects barriers for the visionary state leaders who, unlike @staceyabrams now, don't have an NYT byline, but are worthy of investment.

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More from @gwlauren

11 Feb
As you watch impeachment, remember that GOP operatives weaponized Trump's lies by building entire disinformation campaign efforts that ultimately fed the insurrection. Nov 11, 2019: “We have a President who is committed to Election Day Monitoring. This is a concern of his.
We’ve all seen the tweets about voter fraud and blah blah blah. Every time we’re in with him he asks...what are we doing about voter fraud? What are we doing about voter fraud? Which is great for guys looking for budget approval on stuff. But the point is, he’s committed to this.
He believes in it, and he’ll do whatever it takes to make sure that it’s successful. Meaning recruiting, raising the profile of issues that come up. How many times do you have an issue in a county that is terrible--
Read 5 tweets
2 Feb
This seems to be REALLY DIFFICULT for people to understand: there was no "dip" or "problem" with GOP turnout in GA in the runoff- turnout hit historic highs for both parties!- but Black Democratic Georgians, including rural Black Georgians, voted in EXTRAODINARILY high numbers.
Turnout was extremely high on both sides of the aisle in Nov and Jan. Democrats put together a real multi-racial (that is, diverse voters who are Black, brown and white), multi-ethnic, truly statewide coalition. Dems had strong support and turnout levels across all demographics.
If you want to understand what this looks like, take a look at this map of GA and notice how Dem performance improved in all regions and types of counties- keep in mind rural does not equal white; suburban does not equal white. GA is diverse everywhere…
Read 7 tweets
6 Dec 20
It is not the time for false equivalencies or lazy analysis. That is dangerous and unhelpful as we fight to uphold democratic norms in our state and country. Let's revisit @staceyabrams' words in November 2018:
"I acknowledge that former SoS Brian Kemp will be certified as the victor in the 2018 gubernatorial election...

To watch an elected official—who claims to represent the people of this state, baldly pin his hopes for election on the suppression of the people’s democratic right
to vote—has been truly appalling. So, to be clear, this is not a speech of concession.

Concession means to acknowledge an action is right, true or proper. As a woman of conscience and faith, I cannot concede. But my assessment is that the law allows no further viable remedy...
Read 7 tweets
2 Sep 20
It is irresponsible for a trusted news organization @wsbtv in Georgia to be using a right-wing polling firm - a firm used by multiple GA GOP candidates including the Republican secretary of state - and give credence to their biased, outlier data.
Independent pollsters without an agenda of re-electing Trump have repeatedly shown what every political observer knows: GA is a toss-up. The failure of WSB to report the bias of its pollster is unacceptable; the station should retract this outlier poll and immediately cut ties.
And some receipts showing Landmark is a partisan firm with a mission to elect and promote Republicans: Landmark has worked for a vast number of GOP campaigns in Georgia. Landmark’s biggest client is Brad Raffensperger who paid Landmark $2.5 million for his SOS campaign.
Read 6 tweets
24 Jun 20
Right now Georgia Republicans are trying to pass a law that forbids the state and counties from mailing absentee ballot applications to voters. (As the GOP SOS did in the June primary -- which got him scolded afterwards by his natl party.) This is unacceptable.
This means, for ex, that rural counties that are seeing covid surging & are bracing for a tough fall, won't be able to decide themselves if they want to send apps to voters in their county to help stop the spread & ensure their residents can safely participate in elections.
The GOP needs to realize that vote by mail is a tool that can benefit either party and that localities - as well as the state - should maintain as many possible tools in their toolbox to promote vote by mail generally and certainly in the midst of a raging, ongoing health crisis.
Read 4 tweets
9 Jun 20
The democracy tragedy we are witnessing today across GA- long lines, malfunctioning machines, inadequate resources and training for elections officials, provisional ballot issues, inadequate back up paper ballots & more- were all predictable & preventable by one entity: (1/25)
the Georgia Secretary of State. The SOS chose to move unfunded mandates and massive quantities of mail through counties, rather than ensuring uniformity across the state through the proper resourcing of elections centrally via the state. (2/25)
In GA the SOS is required to ensure that the democracy you get doesn’t depend on where you live or what you look like; yet they didn’t take the actions needed to make democracy real for all. Again. After a similar meltdown in fall of 2018 due to incompetence & malfeasance. (3/25)
Read 25 tweets

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