Home 2019 Elections FWIW Virginia: ? Here Comes the Cavalry ?

FWIW Virginia: ? Here Comes the Cavalry ?


From FWIW Virginia/ACRONYM:

With the Virginia General Assembly elections just 33 days away, some of the 2020 Democrats are lending their endorsements to Virginia Democrats and even visiting the state to rally support for candidates.

Who is doing their part to win back state legislatures ahead of redistricting? And how are they lending their support? We take a look in this week’s edition of FWIW Virginia.

But first…

2019 by the numbers

Here’s how Facebook spending by Republican and Democratic party committees and candidates in the most competitive districts compare since the primary election.

Here are the top ten biggest Facebook spenders in Virginia from September 22-28:

*Everytown for Gun Safety is running Virginia-specific ads from its national page. Because Facebook reports a spending range on individual ads, this number is an approximation of their weekly spend based on the spending range for their individual, Virginia-specific ads.

Days left until the general election: 33

Deep Dive: Here Comes the Cavalry

Nearly every 2020 Democrat has signed the Down-Ballot Pledge to support Democrats running in down-ballot races across the country. With Democrats in striking distance of flipping both the House of Delegates and State Senate, having the resources and media attention that come from the national spotlight could be a game-changer as Democrats try to persuade and turn out every last voter. So who’s doing their part?

The most recent 2020 Democrat to visit Virginia was Senator Cory Booker, who came to Woodbridge to launch a canvass for Delegate Hala Ayala (HD-51). His campaign also hosted the event on his MobilizeAmerica page, where his Virginia supporters could sign up for the canvass.

Beto O’Rourke has made multiple trips to Virginia – on his most recent Labor Day swing, he launched a canvass for Dan Helmer (HD-40) and campaigned alongside Delegate Chris Hurst (HD-12) and Amy Laufer (SD-17).

Earlier in the summer, Mayor Pete Buttigieg and Senator Amy Klobuchar visited Virginia to headline the Blue Commonwealth Gala, one of the Virginia Democratic Party’s biggest fundraising events of the year. Having a well-funded state party has been key for Democrats this year, as the party’s Take the Majority 2019 digital campaign is one of the key drivers of the Democratic digital spending advantage that opened up in August.

Elizabeth Warren lent her own endorsement to Hala Ayala in July and held a town hall at George Mason University in May.

Meanwhile, Vice President Joe Biden hasn’t made any public appearances in Virginia, but he did hold a fundraiser in Richmond at the end of August.

As the final month of the campaign comes into focus, Democrats in key swing districts will need all the resources and media attention they can get. We hope to see more 2020 Democrats lend their spotlight to Democrats in the Commonwealth in the closing weeks of the campaign.

Spotlight: Our Favorite End-of-Quarter Emails

The 3rd fundraising quarter ended on September 30, and nearly every campaign from President to State Delegate ramped up their email program to juice the final haul they’ll have to publicly disclose. Instead of doing a district spotlight, this week we’re taking a look at some of the more creative fundraising emails that hit our inbox.

Changing up the sender of an email is a common way to keep an email list fresh, but this is one we haven’t seen before. Democratic candidate Nancy Guy’s campaign sent out an email from “Nancy’s iPhone” to play off the default “Sent from my iPhone” email tag. FWIW, weird things that look like mistakes, like this sender or spelling errors in subject lines often lead to above-average open rates.

A campaign staffer “forwarding” messages from a candidate is another fairly common email tactic, but this email from the Garrison Coward campaign went a step further. The Republican challenger’s campaign personalized the forwarded email to look like a request from the candidate to reach out to the recipient specifically, including their name and their email. The attention to detail here is neat, but we could live without the fake 5X match.

Finally, the copy in Democratic candidate Ghazala Hashmi’s campaign’s final email before the deadline tried to shake things up with a little self-awareness by talking about not liking fundraising. It’s not a new tactic, but we received around 60 emails from campaigns in the last 72 hours of the fundraising quarter and this was one of the handful that stepped away from the “URGENT,” “I’m worried…” and “the clock is ticking” emails that flooded our inbox. Standing out is the hardest thing for a fundraising email to do, but being less flashy might be an effective strategy in an inbox saturated with dramatic fundraising pleas.

Thanks for reading and make sure to sign up for weekly updatesfollow us on Twitter and email us with ideas of what you’d like us to dive into next.

– The team at ACRONYM

P.S. Here’s a sign-up link for our national FWIW newsletter and you can find today’s issue here.

Previous articleTruth-Tellers (like Spanberger and Luria) Vs. a Cult in Which Truth is the First Casualty
Next articleOne-Stop Shopping: Virginia General Assembly 2019 Races We Need to Pay Attention To