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Transforming Resistance into Political Power

María Urbina - 11/11/2017


The resistance is real. Over the last year, ordinary people have responded to this moment by standing indivisible against cuts to health care, against bigotry and xenophobia, and have infused our movement with groundbreaking energy and numbers. This powerful constituent-led movement has taken it to the next level by running for office—many for the first time—volunteering at record levels, and changing the map in 2017.

In yesterday’s wave, voters around the country loudly rejected Trump and his politics of hate and helped usher a slate of historic wins. We’re immensely proud of the work by local Indivisible groups and all the grassroots that contributed to record turnout in Virginia. Virginia was a major bright spot as the down ballot sweep was enormous (see our statement from last night), but there were also many other brights spots:

  • In Maine, voters spoke out loud and clear to reaffirm that health care is a human right. Voters in the state overwhelmingly chose to pass Medicaid expansion, granting health care coverage to nearly 70,000 low-income state residents.

  • In Washington, Democrat Manka Dhingra was elected to the state senate, flipping control of the legislative body and granting Democrats full power over the state government (and with strong support from at least five local Indivisible groups!).

  • In New Jersey, voters cheerfully repudiated Chris Christie’s party, easily giving victory to Phil Murphy and granting Democrats full control over that state’s government as well.

Indivisible members worked hard in all of these races, registering voters, canvassing their neighborhoods, and working tirelessly to ensure a better future for their communities. Some additional victories particularly close to Indivisible groups’ hearts include:

  • In Michigan, five members of Indivisible Michigan won city council seats.

  • Indivisible groups throughout New York invested heavily in the Westchester county executive race. Their steadfast early commitment and organizing was crucial to ousting Robert Mercer-backed incumbent Rob Astorino and ensuring George Latimer’s victory.

  • Indivisible Montana came out in support of Missoula’s mayor, who won reelection to a fourth term on Tuesday.

  • Indivisible groups in Georgia helped break Republicans’ supermajority in the Georgia state senate, as Democrats Jen Jordan and Jaha Howard will head into a December 5th runoff, decisively flipping the 6th district seat blue.

  • In Philadelphia, our groups worked to help elect Larry Krasner, a civil rights advocate and attorney for both Black Lives Matter and Occupy.

  • Groups in Greenwich, CT, were instrumental in flipping control of the town’s Representative Town Meeting—including Indivisible Greenwich group leader Joanna Swomley.

  • And in both Missouri and Virginia, Hillary Shields and Kimberly Anne Tucker—both former Indivisible group leaders—ran strong campaigns in heavily Republican districts, surprising the political establishment with their strong performance.

In cities and districts around the country, voters rejected white nationalism and elected a more inclusive slate of officials who mirror our diverse electorate:

  • In Charlotte, NC, Vi Lyles made history by becoming the city’s first black female mayor.

  • In St. Paul, MN, Melvin Carter beat a field of ten candidates to become the city’s first mayor of color.

  • Over in the other one of the Twin Cities, Andrea Jenkins became one of the the first black openly transgender women to win elected office with her Minneapolis city council win.

  • In Helena, MT, Wilmot Collins, a former refugee from Liberia, became the city’s first black mayor.

  • In Manchester, NH, Joyce Craig defeated the city’s Republican incumbent mayor to become the city’s first female mayor

  • In Hoboken, NJ, Ravi Bhalla won election to become the state’s first Sikh mayor.

  • In Nassau County, NY, Laura Curran became the county’s first female county executive, flipping control of the office.

These victories are emboldening, they re-energize us for the next fight. But we know the fight isn’t over. If we want to keep securing progress like we did last night—wins that will help us build a strong, progressive and inclusive future—we must show up for every election.

We already have our southern organizer on the ground to assist our many groups in Alabama who have been engaged in growing support and turnout for Doug Jones. We are thrilled to be working for the Indivisible volunteer groups and members who are the leaders of this movement, and we know that as we continue to stand indivisible together, we will win.