Looking back on 2019

Swing Left
Swing Left
5 min readDec 27, 2019


Hey Swing Left,

2020 is only 4 days away. We’re incredibly excited (and admittedly a little nervous) about what the next year holds. With the chance to flip the White House, the Senate, and the state houses key to ending Republican gerrymandering all within our reach, the upcoming election will be the most important of our lives.

We know if we work together, we can win. Here’s a look at some of the things we worked on in 2019:

In the 2018 midterms, we had Swing Districts. And this year, we have Super States — where the key fights of 2020 will be won or lost.

We announced Swing Left’s targets for the 2020 cycle after finding that the most important battles to win the presidency, the Senate, and the once-in-a-decade fight to control redistricting are concentrated in the same few states — what we’re calling the “Super States.”

By focusing our volunteer time and our donations here we can maximize our efforts, by working on many or all of these important contests at the same time.

When Democrats are divided, Trump and the GOP win. But when we work together (like we did in 2018), we can do really big things. In the spirit of unity, we teamed up with Crooked Media to release the Unify or Die Fund — raising early money for the future Democratic nominee for president.

While Democrats battle it out in the primary, Trump has been building his war chest. Whoever earns the nomination will face a serious financial disadvantage. We created this fund to help close that gap by pooling as much grassroots money as we can for future Democratic nominee — which we’ll hand over right when they need it most. With this fund, we started working to elect a Democratic president over a year before the general election.

This loss still stings. Judge Lisa Neubauer ran for a state Supreme Court seat, and a victory here would have paved the way for fair maps in Wisconsin — one of the most gerrymandered states in the country.

We lost this battle, but we’re still fighting tooth and nail to roll back Republican gerrymandering in Wisconsin and across the country.

Republicans have schemed for decades to win control of our state-level governments, impacting everything from who gets elected to Congress to who’s being stripped of their reproductive rights. They use their majorities to pass harmful bills and draw partisan gerrymandered maps that rig future elections in the GOP’s favor.

We have a huge opportunity to tackle this systemic injustice, so we teamed up with the experts. In May, Swing Left welcomed Flippable, a fellow grassroots organization focused on flipping state governments from red to blue, into our family. Flippable has a stellar track record: they helped 82 Democrats win super-close down-ballot races in the midterms, by directing 91% of the funds they raised to races that were decided by 10 points or less. By joining forces, Swing Left and Flippable make a one-stop-shop where you can find the smartest ways to make a difference up and down the ballot.

Using Flippable’s data-driven expertise, we jumped into the biggest state legislature election of 2019: Virginia. All 140 state legislature seats were up for election, and Democrats only needed to win 2 in each chamber to flip the entire legislature.

Swing Left volunteers went all-out to flip these seats. Together, we knocked over 88,000 doors, wrote 229,000 voter turnout letters, and raised $863,000 directly for our 20 candidates.That hard work paid off. We flipped the Virginia state legislature, giving Democrats total control in the state government. Our new majority has the power to pass life-changing legislation and redrew Virginia’s gerrymandered maps. Not only that, but winning Virginia sent a big message to the GOP: We’re ready to win in 2020.

Since starting Swing Left, we’ve operated on one simple premise: helping everyone find the most effective things they can do to win the most important elections. So in 2019, we launched a tool to connect volunteers and donors all over the country with their most strategic opportunities to take action. We call it the Action Finder.

The Action Finder connects volunteers with ways to help from home, or at canvasses and letter writing parties near them. It also points donors to strategic funds to win the state houses, Senate, and the White House. The result is one place where anyone can make an impact on the most competitive races, from wherever they live.

The above highlights just a few things Swing Left did in 2019 — in addition to running not one but two college programs to help young people get involved in politics, helping defend House Democrats who are supporting Trump’s impeachment, starting a podcast, and so much more.

And absolutely none of this would have been possible without you. We’re proud to be part of such an amazing community of committed volunteers and donors, and excited to tackle 2020 with you by our side.

Happy holidays!



Swing Left
Swing Left

We’re flipping the Senate, the White House and key state legislatures by empowering volunteers everywhere to help win critical elections. swingleft.org/medium