Dear California Donor Table/Fund members,


California Voters

As of September 7, 19 million people in were registered to vote in California in the midterm election. That’s 76% of people eligible to vote, and 1.5 million more people registered than in the 2014 midterm. And there is the potential for that number to set a new record for voter registration, even including presidential election years (current record, 2016: 19.4 million registered voters). 

Of specific interest (per elections analyst and creator of the CA120 column Paul Mitchell):


“Note the doubling of NEW registrations in CA25, CA39, CA45 and CA48 over 2016, which is insane. One really huge number: in CA45 only 5,203 registrations during this period in 2014, compared to 27,416 this year. Never seen this level of registration in a gubernatorial cycle.”


“Some of this incredible growth in new and re-registrations is coming in the state’s most competitive congressional districts. Two in particular – the 39th district with Young Kim (R) facing Gil Cisneros (D), and the 45th district with Mimi Walters (R) vs. Katie Porter (D) — have seen a tripling of total registrations and nine-fold increases in re-registration compared to 2014.”


Additionally, over 200,000 16- and 17-year-olds have pre-registered to vote in the last two years, half of them in the last five months.


How will California voters vote? The Public Policy Institute of California released their latest statewide survey of voter views on candidates and proposals on the November ballot. Also….


California Congressional Races

A new poll conducted for the LA Times by the UC Berkeley’s Institute for Governmental Studies shows that no Republicans are ahead in six of the potential flip districts (CD10, 25, 39, 45, 48 and 49. In another two — CD22 and 50 — Democrats Andrew Janz and Ammar Campa-Najjar, respectively, are narrowly polling behind the Republican incumbents.


However, a new NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist poll found that the Kavanaugh confirmation process is mobilizing Republicans: “[Lee Miringoff, director of the Marist Institute for Public Opinion] noted that the Republican move to push Kavanaugh’s confirmation forward, despite his unpopularity and that more people believe accuser Christine Blasey Ford than Kavanaugh, appears to be intended to fire up the GOP base in hopes of retaining control of Congress.”


Together, these polls underline how critical it is to mobilize the progressive base.


As outlined in our recent general election late stage investment document (re-attached), California Donor Table is recommending investments in Alliance San Diego Mobilization Fund to turn out New Majority voters in CD50. The Alliance has a good relationship with Ammar Campa-Najjar and a strong field plan that will turn out Democrats and independents and counter the impact of Islamophobic and racist attack ads from Duncan Hunter.


There is a real chance of winning CD50 with the right resources (see our own advisory board member Steve Phillips’ top 10 races to flip the House), and this is a race that is what we are all about — progressives supporting power building and the priorities of communities on the ground. This is important to both our short term need to flip the House and our long term need to change the game with real progressives that represent our values and will bring them to the Hill.


Contact Nicole and Ludovic with any questions specific to CDT’s CD50 investment strategy.


The Virtuous Cycle of Progressive Politics

This San Diego Union-Tribune piece looks into why policy reforms — specifically by-district school board elections — need additional efforts in civic engagement and candidate recruitment and training for progressives to drive and take advantage of opportunities that result from reforms. This underlines the importance of CDT/F’s approach of investing in this virtuous circle of progressive politics.


The Next California

The LA Times has a new four-part series, The Next California, on what is in store for our state under a new governor. Parts I and II on the economy and natural disasters are out. Parts III and IV on demographics and labor are forthcoming.



Governor Brown signed many progressive bills into law to wrap up the 2018 legislative session, including the net neutrality bill (which the US Department of Justice is suing California to block), a bill requiring California public companies to have at least one woman on their board, and two bills that will give the public access to internal police investigations and video footage of shootings by police officers and other serious incidents. However, Governor Brown also vetoed two important immigration bills: one would have allowed any California resident, regardless of immigration status, to serve on a state board or commission, and the other would have barred immigration arrests inside California courthouses.



V4P and CDT Legislative Debrief, October 11, 2:30pm PT

Join Voices for Progress and the California Donor Table for a webinar on Thursday, October 11 at 2:30 p.m. Pacific to debrief the 2018 legislative session. Click here to RSVP. You’ll get the chance to hear from guest speakers and staff on topics including protecting net neutrality, preventing offshore drilling, and reforming the money bail system. In addition, we’ll talk about why some important bills didn’t pass. We’ll also cover some of the overarching trends in Sacramento this year, on everything from the #MeToo movement to immigrant rights to police transparency. Lastly, we’ll have a update on the state legislative races.


V4P Post-Election Meetings in Washington, D.C.

The week following the election is a key opportunity to have early conversations with senators on the inevitable legislative fights that will arise between the election and the new Congress, as well as strategize for the exciting legislative opportunities a new Congress brings. Join Voices for Progress members and staff on Tuesday, November 13 and Wednesday, November 14 for meetings with senators in Washington, D.C.