At our next Catonsville Indivisibles meeting, we want to discuss medium and long term actions for resistance. One strategy has been proposed by Swing Left, which consists of steps to take back the House in 2018 by supporting progressives in “swing districts”.
If you haven’t already, please take a look at SwingLeft.org. Some notes on this below:
- A Swing District is a district that was won in the last election by 15% of the vote or less.
- There are 52 Swing Districts.
- We need to win 80% of all Swing Districts to take back the House. If we win all 17 Democratic held Swing Districts, we need to flip 24 of the remaining Republican ones.
The closest Swing District to us is Virginia 10. Virginia-10 basically extends from Fairfax and Prince William Counties westward to Frederick County, VA. The district is currently represented by Republican Barbara Comstock, elected in 2014. Prior to this, since 1980, the seat was held by Republican Frank Wolf (who did not run in 2014). In 2014, Comstock won by about 16% of the vote, and in 2016, she won by 6% of the vote. This district is considered up for grabs, because Obama won Virginia-10 in 2008 and Clinton in 2016 (although by a slim margin).
Some people have expressed interest in working to “swing” Maryland-1. Maryland-1 includes parts of Baltimore and Anne Arundel Counties as well as all Eastern Shore counties. Currently the district is represented by Republican Andy Harris; however, it was previously held by Democrat Frank Kratovil, Jr. who was defeated in 2010. Andy Harris was then re-elected in 2012, 2014, and 2016.
Maryland-1 is not shown as a “Swing District” by SwingLeft. This is because Harris won by much more than 15% of the vote in 2016. In 2010, Harris only won by about 12%, but in 2012, 2014, and 2016 he won by about 36 to 41% of the vote. So, whether or not this district can be “swung” is probably up for debate.
To help these efforts, you can:
- Research a swing district – register as a researcher at SwingLeft.org/actionitems
- Start talking to voters in your swing districts – register at SwingLeft.org/actionitems
- Host/attend a Swingleft house party for more information. Lucky for us, one has already been organized – see below & please join!!
Where: Catonsville Library
When: March 4, 3-5 pm
Drinks provided, please consider bringing a snack to share.