"THE KERRY/EDWARDS CAMPAIGN IS SENDING 1000 NEW YORK LAWYERS, LAW PROFESSORS AND LAW STUDENTS TO OHIO, PENNSYLVANIA AND FLORIDA — TO MAKE SURE THAT EVERYONE ELIGIBLE TO VOTE CAN VOTE, AND THAT EVERY VOTE IS COUNTED!! THESE "BATTLEGROUND BRIGADES" WILL BE SPENDING THE LAST WEEK OF THE CAMPAIGN PROTECTING THE VOTE, AN OBVIOUSLY PIVOTAL ROLE THIS YEAR. PLEASE HELP. Send a check for $200, $100, $500 or an amount of your choice, made payable to the "New York Democratic State Committee." AND BE SURE TO WRITE ON THE MEMO PORTION OF THE CHECK: "LAW STUDENT BATTLEGROUND BRIGADES."
ABC News Vote 2004: the field:
Ahead of the Oct. 4 registration deadline in Ohio, Pennsylvania and Michigan, voter registration and partisan mobilization groups are gearing up their ground game.
The American Federation of State, County, Municipal Employees, which will spend in excess of $40 million on election activities this year, will continue what it bills as a non-partisan drive to register infrequently voting home health care workers in cities like Des Moines, Toledo, and Pittsburgh.
The ground is most fertile for AFSCME in Ohio. Imagine Steve Rosenthal's dreams in 1996. Now imagine the AFL-CIO's combined efforts in 2000, which led to Blaise Hazelwood's 72-Hour Task force for the GOP. Then imagine what the unions bill as the biggest, more expensive, most efficient union identification and voter targeting program ever.
That's how it's being billed, in any event. The state AFL-CIO has divided Ohio into 10 zones and distributed the work among its member unions with thousand of eager activists benefiting from millions and millions of dollars in resources and technology.
For two years, they've been building what one labor official called the "biggest GOTV infastructure I've ever seen." (And this official has seen 'em all.)
By Oct. 23, every full time state AFL-CIO employee will devote their entire days to electing John Kerry. They'll set up 10 phone banks, staffed by 60 to 70 employees. Nearly 5,000 unions members will walk door to door. Priority one: the knock and drags — finding every Kerry-identified union member and ensuring they get to the polls. Priority two: finding those undecideds and giving them that extra attention. Priority three — election day everything.
Based on the likelihood of specific voters to vote, the AFL-CIO will visit them as many as three times during that 12-day period.
The SEIU, with its HERO program (part of a $65 million political expenditure), will play a big role, as will the Steelworkers, the Teamsters, food and commercial workers' unions, IBEW, and others.
AFSCME is playing a leading role.
Its Take Back Ohio program has been in the works for two years and has already involved the participation of more than 10 percent of AFSCME Ohio's 120,000 members. AFSCME's goal is to get 80 percent of AFSCME's members registered, 80 percent of those registered to say they support Kerry, and 80 percent of those who say they support Kerry to actually vote.
More than 2,000 AFSCME members have already knocked on doors. (Overall, at least 5,000 AFL-CIO members have done the same.) More than 570,00 pieces of mail have been sent; more than 240,000 leaflets were distributed at workplaces.
How does this compare to what organized labor did in Ohio in 2000?