Political Party/527

They See Blue

Website:

www.theyseeblue.org/

Location:

San Francisco, CA

Type:

Political Action Committee

Classification:

527

They See Blue is a get-out-the vote organization formed to drive Democratic party voter turnout among Americans of South Asian descent. The organization was formed in 2018 in California and established a national presence ahead of the 2020 presidential election with chapters in key swing states, including Georgia and Pennsylvania. The group organizes and hosts events on college campuses and other areas that have a high number of unregistered voters. [1] [2]

They See Blue is partnered with Field Team 6, a get-out-the-vote group that registers and activates Democratic voters in multiple states. [3]

Background

They See Blue was founded in July 2018 in the San Francisco Bay area to target three congressional districts held by Republicans during the 2018 midterm elections. The group claims that its 2018 efforts attracted 200 volunteers and that it held several fundraisers and events in California’s Central Valley to mobilize Democrats within the area’s large South Asian population. Ahead of the 2020 election, the organization sought to expand its influence by establishing chapters in swing states with large south Asian populations. [4]

The organization defines south Asians as people of Afghan, Bangladeshi, Bhutanese, Indian, Indo-Fijian, Indo-Caribbean, Maldivian, Nepali, Pakistani, and Sri Lankan descent. The name They See Blue is a play on the word “Desi,” a term that is used to describe the South Asian community. [5]

Organizers of the group cited inroads made by Republicans among Indian-Americans, particularly those who supported Donald Trump for president, as a reason to organize South Asian-American voters on behalf of Democrats. Several news reports about They See Blue cited a 2019 event in Houston featuring then-President Trump and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi titled “Howdy, Modi!” as evidence that a significant minority of Indian-American voters were warming to Trump and other Republicans. [6]

Sonya Mehta, the national director of the group’s youth outreach arm and the daughter of They See Blue co-founder Sunil Mehta, called Indian-American Trump supporters “a small but vocal minority of (mostly) Indian Trump supporters [who] have monopolized the conversation using fear, hate, and misinformation as their key tactics.” Mehta further stated that such voters were “right-wing nationalists who believe that Trump is best for India.” [7]

Activities

They See Blue was active in multiple swing states during the 2020 election, particularly Georgia, Pennsylvania, and Michigan, where the organization conducted voter mobilization efforts targeting South Asian-American voters. [8] [9]

The organization launched efforts in more than 20 states that it lists as targets ahead of the 2022 midterm election. Some state-level efforts of the group are chapters of They See Blue while others such as South Asians of Michigan Organizing for Serious Action (SAMOSA) are allied partners that maintain a separate identity but coordinate with They See Blue. [10] [11]

Affiliated Organizations

Partner organizations of They See Blue include Activate America (formerly Flip the West), AAPI Victory Fund, the California Democratic Party, the Center for Common Ground, Field Team 6, Force Multiplier, Grassroots Democrats HQ, Indivisible, South Asian for America, Swing Left, and Together We Elect. [12]

References

  1. Paul, Sonia. “‘A political awakening’: how south Asians could tilt key US elections.” The Guardian. September 3, 2020. Accessed July 7, 2022. https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2020/sep/03/south-asians-us-election-2020 ^
  2. “About Us.” They See Blue. Accessed July 7, 2022. https://www.theyseeblue.org/about-us ^
  3. “Mission.” Field Team 6. Accessed July 7, 2022. https://www.fieldteam6.org/mission ^
  4. “About Us.” They See Blue. Accessed July 7, 2022. https://www.theyseeblue.org/about-us ^
  5. Molvi, Fareeha. “South Asian Voters Are the Target of They See Blue, a Grassroots Organization.” Teen Vogue. October 3, 2020. Accessed July 7, 2022. https://www.teenvogue.com/story/south-asian-voters-they-see-blue ^
  6. Molvi, Fareeha. “South Asian Voters Are the Target of They See Blue, a Grassroots Organization.” Teen Vogue. October 3, 2020. Accessed July 7, 2022. https://www.teenvogue.com/story/south-asian-voters-they-see-blue ^
  7. Molvi, Fareeha. “South Asian Voters Are the Target of They See Blue, a Grassroots Organization.” Teen Vogue. October 3, 2020. Accessed July 7, 2022. https://www.teenvogue.com/story/south-asian-voters-they-see-blue ^
  8. “About Us.” They See Blue. Accessed July 7, 2022. https://www.theyseeblue.org/about-us ^
  9. “Georgia.” They See Blue. Accessed July 7, 2022. https://www.theyseeblue.org/georgia ^
  10. “Chapters.” They See Blue. Accessed July 7, 2022. https://www.theyseeblue.org/chapters ^
  11. “Michigan.” They See Blue. Accessed July 7, 2022. https://www.theyseeblue.org/michigan ^
  12. “Our Partners.” They See Blue. Accessed July 7, 2022. https://www.theyseeblue.org/our-partners ^
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They See Blue


San Francisco, CA