WASHINGTON, D.C.— People For the American Way today launched a new campaign page, resources and videos for its #VoteTheCourts2020 campaign, aimed at highlighting the importance of federal courts and federal judicial appointments in the 2020 elections. The campaign reflects the growing commitment among progressive activists to focusing on the courts as a major issue in 2020, and a shift in the political landscape that is making the courts a winning issue for Democrats. It launches as the next Democratic presidential primary debate is set to take place in Ohio on Oct. 15.
“More and more, voters now see the courts as a reason to vote for Democrats,” said Marge Baker, executive vice president for policy and program at People For the American Way. “Now voters want to hear more from Democratic presidential candidates themselves on this issue. They want to know that candidates will appoint fair-minded constitutionalists to the Supreme Court and the lower courts. This campaign is all about getting candidates to go on the record about the importance of the federal courts to voters’ daily lives, educating voters about what to listen for, and motivating more voters to think about the courts when they cast their ballots.”
“The next presidential primary debate would be a great time for candidates to talk about the federal courts,” Baker added. “This issue has been seriously neglected in the debates so far. And if that’s because debate organizers think Democratic voters don’t care, they’re mistaken.”
Baker notes that Associated Press polling after the 2018 midterms showed that voters who named the Supreme Court as an important factor in their votes tended to choose Democrats. This year, PFAW has encouraged presidential candidates to make their views on judicial nominations known, and a new VoteTheCourts video features quotes from Democratic presidential candidates about the qualities they would look for in judicial nominees. Both new videos emphasize a core theme of the campaign: if voters care about critical issues including health care, reproductive rights, gun violence, clean air and water, racial justice, and more, then they care about our federal courts.
The new campaign resources also include a toolkit to share with members and advocates who want to speak out about and press candidates on the importance of the courts in the election. The campaign will include extensive digital and social media outreach as well as in-person events, public education and press outreach. PFAW’s 1.5 million members nationwide form a powerful base for activism around this and the organization’s other priority issues. In addition, PFAW will work with allied organizations locally and nationally to amplify the VoteTheCourts message from now until Election Day 2020.
About People For the American Way
People For the American Way is a progressive advocacy organization founded to fight right-wing extremism and build a democratic society that implements the ideals of freedom, equality, opportunity and justice for all. We encourage civic participation, defend fundamental rights, and fight to dismantle systemic barriers to equitable opportunity. Learn more: https://www.pfaw.org.