As Australia heads towards a federal election here are three stories on the Commons to give you food for thought and action. Gather the lessons from the 2016 federal election, the 2018 Queensland election, Bernie Sanders’ tilt at the US presidency, and the struggle for women’s suffrage in 1905!
Campaigning – Election_Electorates
Elections can take a heavy toll campaigners, organisers, and anyone else working and hoping for social and ecological justice. Now is a time for looking after ourselves and each other, to get in good shape for what comes next.
The big organising approach utilised in the Bernie Sanders campaign offers several valuable rules to scale up your efforts, empower members and supporters, and catch the fire of momentum. Hear from Becky Bond, co-author of Rules for Revolutionaries.
Amanda Tattersall cautions campaigners, organisers and activists to not take Bond & Exley’s rules” as gospel. While the book puts forward valuable insights into the Bernie Sanders campaign the focus is tactics and mobilisation rather than deep organising.
In 2016, GetUp, an organisation best known for its online petitions and email campaigns, decided to go offline. They came up a strategy to remove extreme conservative politicians from the Australian parliament. One of the places they went to was the seat of Bass in Northern Tasmania.
The story of how GetUp successfully organised in the seat of Bass to remove sitting MP Andrew Nikolic at the 2016 federal election. Lessons include the power of mixing online and offline; the power of mixing local with national; and have the local lead the national.
The midterm elections in the US have delivered the House of Representatives to the Democrats. Why did this happen? The nation got organised into opposing Trump. And one of the major forces behind that organisation is Indivisible.
“Personalized political communication” refers to when the medium for a message is a person, not media such as television, pamphlets, or billboards. The electoral arms race is seeing a renaissance of PPC and greater engagement of voters in campaigns and the political process.
Joel Dignam reviews Hahrie Han’s How Organizations Develop Activists. A key finding of Han’s research is that high-engagement chapters practise both organizing and mobilizing. The Voice for Indi campaign is considered as an Australian example of combining these two approaches.