Other Group

The Voter Project

Website:

www.thevoterproject.com/

Location:

Philadelphia, PA

Status:

Voter Registration and Vote By Mail Advocacy Organization

Formation:

2020

The Voter Project is a left-of-center organization that promotes increased vote-by-mail and voter registration in Pennsylvania. [1] Originally founded in 2020 to implement Pennsylvania’s Act 77 law that expanded mail-in voting for the 2020 election cycle, [2] The Voter Project is staffed by several Democratic Party and left-of-center activists. [3] The Voter Project has associated with the labor union-associated, left-of-center Keystone Research Center (KRC). [4] [5]

The Voter Project helped sign up 3.2 million people to vote by mail in Pennsylvania prior to the 2020 election. [6] It has faced some scrutiny after right-to-know requests show The Voter Project may have been involved with grants linked to the left-of-center Center for Tech and Civic Life (CTCL) in Pennsylvania counties won by Hillary Clinton (D) in 2016. [7] [8] [9]

Prior to the 2020 election, The Voter Project released a video featuring Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf (D) in which he says that “it may take a little longer than we’re used to—even a few days—and that’s okay” when referring to tabulating and reporting 2020 election results. [10]

History and Leadership

The Voter Project was founded in March 2020 in Philadelphia and is staffed by several Democratic Party and left-of-center activists. [11] The organization was created to implement Pennsylvania’s Act 77 law, which expanded mail-in-voting for the 2020 election cycle. [12]

Democratic-affiliated strategist and former chief strategist to the super PAC Need to Impeach Kevin Mack is The Voter Project’s lead strategist. [13] [14] Former regional director for election support of the National Vote at Home Institute Jeff Greenburg is a senior advisor for The Voter Project. [15]

Precious Samuel was the director of outreach for The Voter Project’s Power to the Polls PA campaign, where she led recruitment campaigns and the collaboration between The Voter Project and POWER, a left-of-center Pennsylvania-based faith coalition. [16] [17] Samuel has previously worked with the Pennsylvania House Democratic Campaign Committee, left-of-center NextGen America, the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), and the American Federation of Teachers (AFT). She also has volunteer experience with the South Carolina Democratic Party and both Obama for America and Organizing for America. [18] [19]

Activities and Funding

The Voter Project is a Pennsylvania-based left-of-center voter registration and vote-by-mail activist organization that played a key role in registering 3.2 million people to vote by mail in Pennsylvania in the 2020 election, leading what Mack called the “soft-side effort to win the swing state” for Democrats. [20]

Controversy

Following the 2020 presidential election, several open records requests filed in Pennsylvania revealed that The Voter Project may have been involved in efforts to distribute money linked to the left-of-center Center for Tech and Civic Life (CTCL). Broad and Liberty, a Pennsylvania-based news website, reported that in the messages, Jessica Walls-Lavelle, a former staffer for Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf (D), appeared to coordinate with The Voter Project’s Gwen Camp to filter online applications for CTCL-linked election grants in Lehigh, Centre, [21] and Lackawanna [22] Counties, all of which Hillary Clinton (D) won in the 2016 presidential election. [23]

Activities

Prior to the 2020 election, The Voter Project released several advertisements encouraging mail-in voting in the 2020 presidential election. [24] [25] On November 2, 2020, it released a video featuring Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf (D) in which he says that “it may take a little longer than we’re used to—even a few days—and that’s okay.” [26] Other advertisements tell voters to vote by mail for the 2020 election because they have “been waiting four years” for this election. [27]

The Voter Project offered guides for how to fill out vote-by-mail ballots and forms, and how to become a poll worker in Pennsylvania, often in conjunction with left-of-center organizations. [28] It co-hosted voting events in Philadelphia with the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) labor union and the left-of-center All Voting is Local  [29] that featured speakers including Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney (D). [30]

The Voter Project also partnered with the left-of-center Power to the Polls to recruit poll workers in Pennsylvania for the 2020 election, [31] used Democratic Party-aligned Mobilize America to organize backup poll worker orientation and training meetings, [32] [33] provided supplemental training to poll working recruits for left-of-center Common Cause Pennsylvania, [34] and worked with Democratic strategists in Pennsylvania to “push back” against questions regarding election integrity prior to the 2020 election. [35]

Funding

The Voter Project has associated with the labor union-associated, left-of-center Keystone Research Center (KRC). [36] [37] The Voter Project website has been operated in conjunction with The Voter Project Fund, which was described as “a fiscal sponsorship of the Keystone Research Center.” [38]

The Voter Project also solicits individual contributions which are routed through the left-of-center passthrough ActBlue Charities. [39]

In 2021, left-of-center Vote Save America encouraged its supporters to donate to the No Off Years fund, which would in turn donate funds to The Voter Project. [40]

References

  1. “C-2021-058 RTK Attachment – Lackawanna.” DcoumentCloud. Pennsylvania Right to Know. Accessed April 24, 2022. https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/21083596-c-2021-058-rtk-attachment-lackawanna. ^
  2. “C-2021-058 RTK Attachment – Lackawanna.” DcoumentCloud. Pennsylvania Right to Know. Accessed April 24, 2022. https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/21083596-c-2021-058-rtk-attachment-lackawanna. ^
  3. “Order Business Documents.” Pennsylvania Department of State. Accessed April 24, 2022. https://www.corporations.pa.gov/search/corpsearch. ^
  4. “How to Fill Out Your Vote By Mail Ballot.” The Voter Project. October 4, 2020. Accessed via Web Archive April 23, 2022. https://web.archive.org/web/20201004062504/https://www.thevoterproject.com/. ^
  5. “How Your Donation Helps.” Keystone Research Center and PA Budget and Policy Center. Accessed April 24, 2022. https://krc-pbpc.org/make-a-donation-to-the-voter_project_fund/. ^
  6. [1] Sheperd, Todd. “Former Sec. of State Boockvar and Gov. Wolf staffer helped selectively invite counties for election grants.” Broad and Liberty. October 19, 2021. Accessed April 23, 2022. https://broadandliberty.com/2021/10/19/former-sec-of-state-boockvar-and-gov-wolf-staffer-helped-selectively-invite-counties-for-election-grants/. ^
  7. “C-2021-058 RTK Attachment – Lehigh and Centre.” DocumentCloud. Accessed April 24, 2022. https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/21083563-c-2021-058-rtk-attachment-lehigh-and-centre. ^
  8. “C-2021-059 RTK Attachment – Lackawanna.” DocumentCloud. Accessed April 24, 2022. https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/21083596-c-2021-058-rtk-attachment-lackawanna. ^
  9. “Broad + Liberty investigative reporter Todd Sheperd testifies in Harrisburg on CTCL “Zuckbucks”.” Broad and Liberty YouTube. Pennsylvania State Senate. Posted April 8, 2022. Accessed April 24, 2022. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NhDXEQ7Hpxs. ^
  10. “Counted.” The Voter Project YouTube. Posted November 2, 2020. Accessed April 23, 2022. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Uhck9CBeuso. ^
  11. “Order Business Documents.” Pennsylvania Department of State. Accessed April 24, 2022. https://www.corporations.pa.gov/search/corpsearch. ^
  12. “C-2021-058 RTK Attachment – Lackawanna.” DcoumentCloud. Pennsylvania Right to Know. Accessed April 24, 2022. https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/21083596-c-2021-058-rtk-attachment-lackawanna. ^
  13. “Kevin Mack.” Twitter. Accessed April 24, 2022. https://mobile.twitter.com/KevinMackVA. ^
  14. “Kevin Mack.” LinkedIn. Accessed April 24, 2022. https://www.linkedin.com/in/kemack/. ^
  15. “Jeff Breenburg.” LinkedIn. Accessed April 24, 2022. https://www.linkedin.com/in/jeff-greenburg-718434225/. ^
  16. Given, Molly. “A creative call to action for poll workers in PA.” Metro Philadelphia. September 14, 2020. Accessed April 24, 2022. https://metrophiladelphia.com/a-creative-call-to-action-for-poll-workers-in-pa/. ^
  17. “Precious S. Samuel.” LinkedIn. Accessed April 24, 2022. https://www.linkedin.com/in/precious-s-samuel/. ^
  18.  Given, Molly. “A creative call to action for poll workers in PA.” Metro Philadelphia. September 14, 2020. Accessed April 24, 2022. https://metrophiladelphia.com/a-creative-call-to-action-for-poll-workers-in-pa/. ^
  19. “Precious S. Samuel.” LinkedIn. Accessed April 24, 2022. https://www.linkedin.com/in/precious-s-samuel/. ^
  20. Sheperd, Todd. “Former Sec. of State Boockvar and Gov. Wolf staffer helped selectively invite counties for election grants.” Broad and Liberty. October 19, 2021. Accessed April 23, 2022. https://broadandliberty.com/2021/10/19/former-sec-of-state-boockvar-and-gov-wolf-staffer-helped-selectively-invite-counties-for-election-grants/. ^
  21. “C-2021-058 RTK Attachment – Lehigh and Centre.” DocumentCloud. Accessed April 24, 2022. https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/21083563-c-2021-058-rtk-attachment-lehigh-and-centre. ^
  22. “C-2021-059 RTK Attachment – Lackawanna.” DocumentCloud. Accessed April 24, 2022. https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/21083596-c-2021-058-rtk-attachment-lackawanna. ^
  23. “Broad + Liberty investigative reporter Todd Sheperd testifies in Harrisburg on CTCL “Zuckbucks”.” Broad and Liberty YouTube. Pennsylvania State Senate. Posted April 8, 2022. Accessed April 24, 2022. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NhDXEQ7Hpxs. ^
  24. “Easy Peasy.” The Voter Project YouTube. Posted September 29, 2020. Accessed April 23, 2022. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Egi7OR9vV5o. ^
  25. “Fuss.” The Voter Project YouTube Channel. Posted September 29, 2020. Accessed April 23, 2022. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1KlFRXF37RQ. ^
  26. “Counted.” The Voter Project YouTube. Posted November 2, 2020. Accessed April 23, 2022. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Uhck9CBeuso. ^
  27. “Wake Up Call.” The Voter Project YouTube. Posted October 29, 2020. Accessed April 23, 2022. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nh7JFAdaLfw. ^
  28. “How to Fill Out Your Vote By Mail Ballot.” The Voter Project. October 4, 2020. Accessed via Web Archive April 23, 2022. https://web.archive.org/web/20201004062504/https://www.thevoterproject.com/. ^
  29. “Tweet.” Twitter. Posted September 9, 2020. Accessed April 24, 2022. https://mobile.twitter.com/PAStandsUp/status/1303721211164274690. ^
  30. “The Voter Project: Call for Poll Workers.” The Voter Project Event. September 9, 2020. Accessed April 24, 2022. https://tthm.wufoo.com/forms/the-voter-project-call-for-poll-workers. ^
  31. “How to Fill Out Your Vote By Mail Ballot.” The Voter Project. October 4, 2020. Accessed via Web Archive April 23, 2022. https://web.archive.org/web/20201004062504/https://www.thevoterproject.com/. ^
  32. “Backup Poll Worker Orientation.” Democracy PA. Accessed April 24, 2022. https://www.mobilize.us/democracypa/event/359891/?referring_vol=2681324&rname=Shirley&timeslot=2535092&referring_participation=13616018&referring_data_signature=v1-063ce5c8dd521e59&share_medium=native_share&share_context=event_detail_page. ^
  33. “Tweet.” Twitter. Posted September 28, 2020. Accessed April 24, 2022. https://mobile.twitter.com/BenBlack33/status/1310720801889488897. ^
  34. Lisi, Tom. “A new wave of Pa. poll workers will face a major test Tuesday.” Spotlight PA. November 2, 2020. Accessed April 24, 2022. https://www.spotlightpa.org/news/2020/11/pa-election-2020-poll-workers-training-provisional-ballots/. ^
  35. Bidgood, Jess. “To win crucial Pennsylvania, Trump leans heavily on unfounded fears of massive voter fraud.” Boston Globe. October 16, 2020. Accessed via web archive April 24, 2022. https://archive.ph/AAp2N. ^
  36. How to Fill Out Your Vote By Mail Ballot.” The Voter Project. October 4, 2020. Accessed via Web Archive April 23, 2022. https://web.archive.org/web/20201004062504/https://www.thevoterproject.com/. ^
  37. “How Your Donation Helps.” Keystone Research Center and PA Budget and Policy Center. Accessed April 24, 2022. https://krc-pbpc.org/make-a-donation-to-the-voter_project_fund/. ^
  38. “How to Fill Out Your Vote By Mail Ballot.” The Voter Project. October 4, 2020. Accessed via Web Archive April 24, 2022. https://web.archive.org/web/20201004062504/https://www.thevoterproject.com/. ^
  39. “Donate to The Voter Project.” ActBlue. Accessed April 23, 2022. https://secure.actblue.com/donate/the-voter-project-1. ^
  40. “Tweet.” Twitter. Posted October 4, 2021. Accessed April 24, 2022. https://mobile.twitter.com/votesaveamerica/status/1445129056366718977. ^
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The Voter Project

1229 Chestnut Street, PMB 177
Philadelphia, PA