DLCC's State of the States - September 29

"In Georgia, minority voices are finally threatening to be heard at the ballot box after more than a century of being marginalized by the political process. And conservatives are ramping up a campaign to stop them."

Control of state Senate up for Grabs

The governor's race may have garnered most of the political headlines recently, but Pennsylvania political insiders are also closely following another contest - the battle in districts across the state to see which party will control the state Senate next year. Republicans hold a narrow margin in the chamber now, with 27 members, compared to 23 Democrats.

Democrats are hoping Gov. Tom Corbett's unpopularity in recent polls, combined with several contests in the eastern part of the state that might be more favorable to Democratic candidates, will translate to Democratic wins in November.

Colorado Republican Calls Neo-Confederate Website an "Interesting Read"

Colorado mayor and candidate for state Senate Don Suppes encouraged his Twitter followers to visit a neo-Confederate website that “denigrates gay people, women, and African-Americans, and complains that white people can't use the N-word.”

DLCC's State of the States - September 22

"Being involved in the civil rights movement for so long, I never thought I would see the day that in the last eight years, 81 pieces of legislation have been introduced in state legislatures to curtail the right to vote."

Two dozen key races may decide control of Maine State House

The Portland Press Herald's Steve Mistler identifies the battleground districts likely to be turning points in the battle for the Maine State House.

DLCC's State of the States - September 15

"What have Georgia Republicans come to when they are outwardly admitting to suppressing the African-American vote?"

Record Amounts of Cash Going into 2014 State Races

via Governing Magazine

Stateline's Jeffrey Stinson takes a look at the "record-breaking rate" at which campaign contributions are pouring in to statehouse races across the country:

The Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee is spending about $20 million this election cycle on legislative races, said Michael Sargeant, the group’s executive director.

Sargeant this month unveiled a multi-year “Advantage 2020” plan aimed at winning control of the nation’s legislative chambers during the next three election cycles. At present, Republicans control 28 legislatures to the Democrats’ 17. Four are split and Nebraska’s unicameral legislature is nonpartisan. The year 2020 is critical, because after that year’s census, state lawmakers in most states will be charged with drawing districts for state legislative and congressional seats.

MSNBC Highlights DLCC's Advantage 2020 Initiative

MSNBC's Benjy Sarlin highlighted the Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee's "Advantage 2020" initiative, a major effort by the DLCC to help Democrats win elections and level the playing field in order to be successful in the next round of redistricting:

Last week, the Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee announced it would commit at least $70 million to Advantage 2020, a program aimed at targeting legislative chambers in key states over the next four election cycles with the specific aim of influencing redistricting. The plan calls on Democrats to invest resources not just in state chambers the party has a shot at winning this November, but in legislatures where they might have a chance at slowly eroding a GOP majority over time thanks to demographic trends.

“[Gerrymandering] has led to far right policies in states, far right policies in Congress,” Michael Sergeant, executive director of the DLCC, told reporters in announcing the new program. Republicans “don’t feel like they’re accountable to anybody because they feel like they have drawn the lines and the maps in such a way that they don’t have to actually answer to the voters,” Sargent said.

VIDEO: Utah Democratic Candidates Get A Boost from DLCC

via KUTV CBS 2

There are over 60 local, democratic candidates for the Utah State Legislature, according to the Utah Democratic Party.  

Currently, the national Democratic party is giving the local candidates a boost by sending teams of field workers to Utah and 26 other states.  The teams will help spread the word about the candidates and also push voter registration.  

The effort is headed by the Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee.  

"The more people vote, the more people participate and that is not only better for democracy, it's good for the Democratic Party," said Michael Sargeant, Executive Director of the DLCC.  

DLCC Launches Advantage 2020 as the Key to Success in the Next Round of Redistricting -- $70 Million-Plus Effort Starting with the 2014 Cycle

DLCC Advantage 2020

Washington, D.C. (August 21, 2014) – Together with a roster of Democratic state legislative leaders from across the U.S., the Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee (DLCC) launched today in Minneapolis, MN Advantage 2020, a major effort by the DLCC to help Democrats win elections and level the playing field in order to be successful in the next round of redistricting.

[LISTEN TO RECORDED LAUNCH EVENT HERE]

Advantage 2020 is the result of the DLCC’s analysis of the electoral opportunities that exist in all 50 states in 2014, as well as an examination of the electoral and demographic changes that are expected this decade.  In this assessment conducted jointly with Clarity Campaigns, the DLCC determined that Advantage 2020 will require an investment of a minimum of $70 million over the next four cycles.  This investment has begun in 2014, and the DLCC expects to increase the level of investment significantly in each cycle thereafter.

Much is at stake in the next round of redistricting. Partisan control of Congress hangs in the balance, as do policy outcomes in every state capitol.  During the past two redistricting cycles, Republicans have cashed in their legislative power to draw maps to favor their own special interests.  As a result, we have seen ultra-conservative measures passed at the state level and a Tea-Party Congress that is no longer held accountable. Our politics are broken and blocking Republicans from blatant gerrymandering is a critical step in fixing our system.

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