Nevada turnout in 2004 was 830,000 votes, so one percent in the polls is 8,300 voters. Within Nevada, half the votes are in Clark County, where a labor-friendly, working class, Latino base is reliably Democratic but doesn't always make it to the polls. The Peninsula Young Democrats are planning a Las Vegas trip to do Get-Out-the-Vote work, targeting exactly these voters. Last election, our trip was something like 50% of the Young Democrats from California that traveled to Nevada, and that group made up the vast majority of people working in Clark County. So if we don't show up, it doesn't happen.
If the election happened today like the pollsters think is most likely, PYD bringing 350 people to Clark County and getting 25 voters each to come out and vote could literally make the difference between winning or losing the election.
Pause for a moment to let that sink in. I want to make sure everyone understands the deadly serious stakes in all of this. We're going to have a lot of fun partying in Las Vegas on Halloween -- bring your costume! -- but our efforts literally could swing the outcome of the entire Presidential election.
Sure, the exact scenario is unlikely, but it's plausible enough that it's what the pollsters are predicting today. What is clear is that our efforts will be a critical part of any winning strategy.
So please take a moment to consider whether you could take off Friday 10/31 through Tuesday 11/4, and take the road trip out to Nevada with us.
We'll be leaving in vans mid-day Friday or by plane after work Friday, spending Friday night, Halloween, in Vegas, and spending the next four days (Saturday, Sunday, Monday, and Election Tuesday) making sure every Democrat in Las Vegas manages to get to the polls.
If you want to come, just drop me a line and I'll put you in touch with our lead organizer for this effort. And whether you can make it or not, let your friends know about this.
Relatedly: The PYD's current two activities are voter registration on community college campuses (again, drop a line if you're interested in helping! just serving one shift as a volunteer could be extremely helpful, as we try to get everybody on the rolls) and fundraising for the Obama campaign. I personally am on the hook for five figures, and have made about a third of my goal. We've gotten support (and appearances at events) from a variety of electeds and influential figures, and we really need to meet our promises to these people. If we do meet our group goal of breaking into the mid-six-figures, we'll be setting ourselves apart from any other Young Dems group in the country, demonstrating the political engagement and influence of the next generation of leadership in Silicon Valley.
Consider: If you could've gotten up every day since January 2001, and paid one dollar for George Bush to not be president that day, by the end of one term you would've spent $1,461, and by today you would've exceeded the maximum legal donation of $2,300. So when you think about contributing a little to support the Obama campaign, to help ensure we don't continue with reckless and bellicose foreign policy and domestic policies that cram down most of us to give more to those who already have, think about higher numbers. Even the maximum is just not all that much, in the grand scheme of things. If you can afford to go out to eat once a month, you can afford to make sure the food you get there isn't tainted with E Coli. If you can afford a NetFlix account, you can afford to make sure we have a President whose notions about foreign policy don't come from Rambo and 24. If you can afford a ticket to Burning Man, you can afford to help protect our freedoms against warrantless wiretapping, anti-choice Supreme Court appointments, and institutionalized torture. Don't sit this one out, and then spend the next four years thinking that it'd be a great deal if you could pay just a dollar a day to have John McCain not be president.
I have been gradually sending out personal notes to a variety of people I thought were likely prospects, but at this point I'm resorting to the mass appeal, because school, TA'ing, and assorted political activities are making it impossible to sit down and write fifty individual emails. Sorry about that. But if you would please consider donating, here is our link:
Please put "Auros" in the field where it asks who referred you. Even five bucks helps, but please think through how much you can really afford, spread over four or eight years. And consider linking to this post from your journal or otherwise referring friends.
Lastly, if you're interested in hanging out with some young, smart, politically-engaged people, we have a bunch of fundraising events -- in the next couple weeks, there's a Clean Tech panel on Tue 9/23 featuring people from Tesla Motors, The Westly Group, and Google.org. And there's a Space Science themed party on Sat 9/27, featuring Karaoke with Congressman Mike Honda.