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1 Million Dems Apply to Vote By Mail in PA

Democrats in Pennsylvania have the upper hand for vote-by-mail at this point in 2020 over Republicans in the Keystone State. 

On Friday, the PA Democratic Party sent out a release announcing that over 1 million Democrats in the state have applied for a mail-in ballot. According to data pulled from the Department of State on Wednesday evening, 1.26 million Democrats applied for a mail-in ballot, while 520,000 Republicans applied for a mail-in ballot. 

The PA Democratic Party credited reaching the 1 million threshold as a result of the shift in the state party’s “Back to Blue” strategy to urging voters to sign up to vote-by-mail as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. The release added that they hosted over 1,200 participants in online seminars focused on the vote-by-mail process, holding 11 days of action, partnering with Shapiro for Pennsylvania, the Democratic National Committee and the Democratic Attorneys General Association to send over 1 million texts to Pennsylvania voters, plus making nearly 750,000 phone calls to voters in the state. 

“Our Back to Blue organizing team is one of the best the commonwealth has ever seen, and we’re just getting started,” said Sinceré Harris, Executive Director of the Pennsylvania Democratic Party. “Even with COVID-19, we didn’t skip a beat.”

“We immediately re-oriented our program toward remote organizing and encouraging Pennsylvanians to vote safely from home — and we have dominated the GOP in vote by mail signups ever since,” Harris continued. “This is hard work paying off — from grassroots volunteers to our local, state and national partners. Pennsylvania Democrats are fired up, energized, and ready to go back to blue in November.”

The Republican National Committee fired back by touting the amount of voters they have reached online since shifting to digital campaigning as a result of COVID-19 in mid-March. 

“With over 60 staffers on the ground and over 2 million phone calls made since making the switch to 100% virtual online campaign activities, Trump Victory in Pennsylvania continues to dominate the Keystone state with our permanent, data-driven ground game that hasn’t left the state since 2016,” said RNC Spokesperson Michael Joyce. “We’re playing chess, while Pennsylvania Democrats are playing checkers.” 

While the RNC may attempt to shrug off the amount of Democratic voters in the commonwealth that have applied to vote-by-mail, Republicans in the state find themselves in a tough spot over the matter. 

Reuters reports that as President Donald Trump “has made no secret of his disdain for mail-in voting, proclaiming frequently – without evidence – that such balloting is riddled with fraud,” Republican officials in the state fear falling significantly behind Democrats in this form of voting. 

“We don’t want to start the election down 500,000 votes,” Allegheny County GOP Chair Sam DeMarco told Reuters. “Republican leaders in the state need to embrace it or else we could pay a price.”

Philly Clout also reported on this dilemma for Republicans in the beginning of May by writing that, “The Republican National Committee in April sent mailers to Pennsylvania voters urging them to vote by mail,” although Trump has been vocal against mail-in voting.

17 Responses

  1. I really hope people realize that Orange Turd has just about completely ruined the USA in less than 4 years. Allies no longer respect us, there is rioting in the streets, the economy is shot and all he offers is idiotic tweets calling for his cult members to confront people on the streets. This is what he’s done as a businessman – RUIN EVERYTHING HE TOUCHES.

  2. The data from this morning has it up to 1.27 million Dems and just shy of 523,000 Republicans requesting ballots

    The reason for the disparity is pretty simple, and is due to Republicans (and Trump in particular) shooting themselves in the foot.

    The Republicans have pushed their elderly voters to vote absentee for years, because they know in improves turnout. (Trump’s own press secretary routinely votes by mail.) They are bad-mouthing the new mail-in policy because it will improve Dem turnout, like it did for them. But, that bad-mouthing is back-firing, and depressing GOP signups.

    Also, Trump and the GOP’s irresponsible “reopen by downplaying the virus and health/safety concerns” is keeping their own supporters from signing up so they can be tough/defiant with in-person voting. Whereas the Dems are taking social distancing seriously, and signing up to vote by mail.

    In many ways it parallels the compliance with CDC recommendations about wearing a mask in stores.

    1. No, its due to Dems illegal ballot stuffing. Pretty simple really.

  3. It’s a false comparison at this point. The GOP offers no competition in the primary, so no incentive to apply now. Their staff is all over the red counties and will get those ballots filed for the general. Dems should not be so cocky.

    1. How do they expect to have any sort of performance on mail-in with the White House chirping the precise opposite? Make no mistake, PA will still be competitive, but Dems will own mail-in.

  4. It is great that so many Democrats have applied to vote by mail. HOWEVER, there is a BIG problem with mail-in voting in PA. If these problems are not fixed by November we are in big trouble. My application was processed on May 5 and supposedly mailed on May 8. As of May 28, I have not received it. I was finally able to reach a human today, after trying for several days. She said she would put a ballot in the mail today. However, it is clearly not going to reach me in time to mail back. According to the Phila. Inquirer, thousands of voters in PA are in the same situation. PA made the deadlines for mail voting way too tight. They need to extend the deadline for receiving ballots or else thousands of us will be disenfranchised.

    1. Jeanne-

      The problem more than likely was that many address labels were printed without the Apt #. This is something that I learned about only last night. I think it was a bug/problem with the state dept software, because I’ve heard that the apt # was correctly printed on the return address labels.

      This is a problem that should have been spotted and solved the first few days they started sending ballots.

      So, the post office probably returned it to the county as “undeliverable”. This was completely avoidable, and I plan to inject myself into the post-mortem analysis of “what went wrong”.

      Fortunately, most of these “growing pains” are the result of this being the first time we are doing it, and while restricted by the virus and lockdowns, and the overwhelming number of unexpected requests. The problems can be fixed for showtime in November.

    2. Then just make sure you vote in person. Everyone who mails the ballot in needs to follow through and make sure the county has recorded it. If not, vote in person on a provisional ballot.

  5. I’m a Democrat that has already voted by mail and will get all future ballots voting by mail.

      1. Now you never need to leave your apartment. You can sit there, complaining about Mike Stack being a Republican, and put as little effort into voting as you do thinking about your political positions and postings.

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