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The Arlington County Democratic Committee’s efforts focused on outreach leading up to the party’s June 8 primary could also pay dividends during the general election in November.
Party officials on March 3 outlined a number of efforts aimed at reminding voters there is a primary for statewide offices and local legislative seats coming up, hoping to get them registered and, if possible, further engaged.
“Arlington is a highly transient community,” noted ACDC precinct-operations chair Carol Fontein, making outreach a 12-month-a-year necessity. Local Democrats “are on the job,” she promised.
Fontein’s well-oiled precinct-operations apparatus will be placing “stickie-notes” on the doors of local homes in the run-up to the primary, letting them know about its importance. (The deadline to register for the election is May 17.)
In addition, the voter-support team under command of Marsha Johnston will be setting up a number of weekly voter-registration tables across the community.
Most will be held on Saturdays, with others on Wednesday afternoons, starting on April 10.
“We’re going to stick with our [health] protocols we established last year,” Johnston said, allowing for in-person interaction while attempting to limit the spread of COVID. A similar effort will be undertaken at local farmers’ markets as the weather warms.
Democrats on June 8 will be selecting their nominees for governor, lieutenant governor, as well as, locally, for delegates in the 45th, 47th and 49th House of Delegates districts. Republicans will be choosing their statewide nominees in a May convention, and thus far do not have any intra-party battles for local legislative seats.
The bonus for Democrats: All the people who are contacted in the run-up to the primary will become part of a party database for future elections, to be drawn on this November in what could be a close-fought race for statewide offices.
Johnston said one area local Democrats were working to improve in was in outreach to Spanish-langauge voters.
“We’re going to be really working to spread the word this spring,” she said.