Through our electoral program, AFSCME members made a difference in the 2020 election

With so much at stake for working families in the 2020 election, AFSCME members across the country stood up to the challenge once again. Although the pandemic prevented us from putting thousands of boots on the ground as we normally do, AFSCME members still made a huge difference in key races across the country.

Our union channeled its activism this election cycle through virtual field offices in key battleground states. We put in place a robust independent-expenditure program, which included working with For Our Future to contact voters and communities of color directly. And we recruited members to serve as poll workers.

Here is a snapshot of the outreach to the AFSCME community this election:

  • Member Digital Program: AFSCME’s member digital program aggressively encouraged targeted members to vote early or by mail, return their ballots and track their progress. This program played an aggressive role in Pennsylvania, Florida, Ohio, Minnesota, North Carolina, Michigan, Georgia, Colorado, Arizona, Kentucky, Maine, Wisconsin, Iowa, Nevada and Montana.
  • Member Mail Program: AFSCME ran a sophisticated paid voter-contact program to support preferred candidates in competitive races, sending over 3.1 million pieces of mail. This included messages advocating for former Vice President Joe Biden and Sen. Kamala Harris in 16 battleground states; and promoting worker-friendly candidates in 12 U.S. Senate races, 16 House races, two gubernatorial races, attorney general contests in Montana, North Carolina and Pennsylvania, and state Supreme Court races in Ohio and Iowa. We also backed a constitutional amendment in Illinois and ballot measures in Maryland and Missouri.
  • AFSCME Hybrid Program: AFSCME affiliates from noncompetitive (blue) presidential states called into battleground states, with members talking to fellow members on behalf of the AFSCME for Biden campaign. We established online campaign field offices that were the hub of all AFSCME state field operations at Here, AFSCME members, retirees and activists were able to access training webinars, sign up for call and texting programs, get up-to-date information on voting by mail and early vote states, and even register to vote and request mail-in ballots.

Here are some highlights of our electoral program’s achievements as of early evening on Election Day:

  • 15,700 thousand unique visitors to our virtual field office and Mobilize dashboard.
  • 703 phone banks and 434 text bank events, resulting in 1,080,684 attempts and 62,849 contacts.
  • 49% (241,789) of all registered members or retirees in our targeted states had voted early or by mail.
  • 2 million ad impressions served in the last three months of the 2020 campaign cycle; upwards of 100 ad impressions delivered per voter.
  • More than 580 unique creatives (social media banner ads, on-demand TV, etc.) served to over 400,000 devices.
  • 4 million OverTheTop video ads delivered to more than 75,000 members and public service employees across smart TVs and streaming apps, including ABC News, Fox Business, NBC, Sling TV, TNT, and many more.