Democrats text over 1 million Georgia voters to boost mail voting efforts

Democrats text over 1 million Georgia voters to boost mail voting efforts

The Georgia Democratic Party and the Democratic National Committee (DNC) are teaming up to text more than 1 million Georgians and encourage them to vote by mail amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Georgia, which postponed its primary from March 24 to May 19 over health concerns, is mailing absentee ballot request forms to all of its nearly 7 million voters to try to maintain turnout in its presidential and down-ballot primaries. Democrats said in a statement the concept may be “unfamiliar” to many voters and that hundreds of volunteers are texting residents to inform them of the process. 

“Our team is putting in the work to make sure every Georgian can make their voice heard, and innovating to reach Georgians right where they are. This program means that Georgia Democrats will reach more voters than ever before — and we know that when every eligible Georgian is able to cast their ballot, Democrats will win in November,” said Scott Hogan, the executive director of the state Democratic Party.

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The texting campaign is part of a broader effort by state and national Democrats to reach voters in Georgia. The DNC in late January purchased tens of millions of cellphone numbers across the country, including in Georgia, to improve voter contact, work the party says is “paying dividends” as campaigns try to reach voters who are self-quarantining or observing social distancing guidelines. 

However, the party may face an uphill battle in encouraging voting by mail, which has not been popular in Georgia in past cycles — 95 percent of voters did so in-person in 2016 and 2018. 

The Peach State is a top Democratic target and is expected to be a key battleground in both presidential and down-ballot races. 

Georgia’s presidential primary, which is worth 105 pledged delegates, is believed to heavily favor former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenNew York woman arrested after allegedly spitting on Jewish children Former Sen. Donnelly confirmed as Vatican ambassador Giuliani associate sentenced to a year in prison in campaign finance case MORE over Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersFilibuster becomes new litmus test for Democrats Gallego says he's been approached about challenging Sinema Democrats call on Biden administration to ease entry to US for at-risk Afghans MORE (I-Vt.) given the high number of black voters there, and Democrats are also eager to build on momentum from Stacey Abrams’s 2018 gubernatorial campaign to make the state competitive in the White House race against President TrumpDonald TrumpJudge rules Alaska governor unlawfully fired lawyer who criticized Trump Giuliani led fake electors plot: CNN Giuliani associate sentenced to a year in prison in campaign finance case MORE.

Georgia is also home to one of the country's most closely watched Senate races. Sen. Kelly LoefflerKelly LoefflerThese Senate seats are up for election in 2022 Eleven interesting races to watch in 2022 Democrats' selective hearing on law and order issues puts everyone at risk MORE (R) will face off against Rep. Doug CollinsDouglas (Doug) Allen CollinsJan. 6 panel releases contempt report on Trump DOJ official ahead of censure vote Lobbying world Sunday shows preview: Biden administration confronts inflation spike MORE (R) to fill the remainder of former Sen. Johnny IsaksonJohnny IsaksonThese Senate seats are up for election in 2022 Schumer makes plea for voting bill, filibuster reform in rare Friday session Jan. 6 brings Democrats, Cheneys together — with GOP mostly absent MORE’s (R) term. A January runoff will be triggered if no candidate reaches 50 percent support.