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The next election for most voters in Illinois is April 4th, 2017. Most people aren’t even aware that these elections are happening—but GOP Super PACs and dark money organizations are paying close attention.
For too long, the GOP has organized and beaten us at the local level—mayors, school boards, township trustees—and that local dominance is part of the reason they now control the White House, Congress, and the Governor’s mansion. If we want to reclaim our country and deliver it from the forces of misogyny, racism, hatred, fear, and bigotry, we have to start at the true grassroots: local elections.
While these elections may be local, their consequences are not. Mayors determine whether or not the local police force will be part of Trump’s deportation force or if they’ll stand against it as a sanctuary city. School boards decide not only how much funding your public schools get, but how things like climate change and evolution are taught. Trustees determine whether or not families in crisis have the resources they need to get back on their feet.
We can’t vote Trump out of office until 2020. We can’t vote Rauner out of office until 2018. But on April 4th, 2017 we can make a real impact right here in our own communities. These are smaller elections so every vote—and every volunteer—counts even more.
Across Illinois, outside groups are spending money and influence to recruit, train, and support candidates who push an extreme agenda that includes cutting or eliminating food bank resources, mental health services, programs for the severely disabled and children in crisis. These candidates are often anti-choice, anti-worker, and anti-immigrant and seekito enact Trump and Rauner’s agenda at the local level.
This is our chance to make a difference—not in two years, not in four years, but right here and right now.
There are enough people who vote Democratic in Presidential elections that if a fraction of them came out to vote in their local races, we’d win every race by a mile. Unfortunately, most of these Democratic voters don’t come out to vote in municipal elections.
That’s where we come in. We are going to shine a light on these important elections to help create voter enthusiasm and participation. Help us run a comprehensive Get Out The Vote phone bank operation! We’re going to call fellow Democrats in these areas, educate them about the upcoming election, and get their commitment to get out and vote!