A New Persuasion Technique: Legislative Catch-and-Release
Legislative issues that get people fired up are often forgotten by the time Election Day comes around. With Trump in office, vulnerable Republicans are going to have to make some tough decisions on votes, and we need to make sure people hold their representatives accountable long after a vote has happened.
Crucial legislative decisions like confirming controversial nominees to the Cabinet or voting on bills that roll back access to health care and environmental protections hinge on whether people are pressuring Congress to act in their favor and be a check to executive power.
We can use our brand new Legislative Catch & Release program to capture voters’ frustration while they’re focused on legislative issues, and then redeploy it when it's time to mobilize your supporters right before Election Day.
In the first phase – the “catch” – we call out to targeted voters, tell them that their legislator has just voted a certain way on an issue, and ask them to record a statement on why they’re angry with that decision. The recording process allows voters to voice their concerns from the comfort of their own homes with no one to silence them. It’s a low-risk, high-reward tool that’s as simple as leaving a voicemail.
In the second phase – the “release” – we call back the same universe of voters closer to Election Day. Those who recorded receive an automated call and hear their own voice played back to them. Those who chose not to record receive a compilation of the best recordings.
Below, you can listen to a compilation of recordings voters made in response to Republican efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act earlier this year.
"What happens to people like me? Are we lost? … You have power. Use it FOR the people."
These recordings essentially remind voters why they should be angry with incumbents who contributed to reactionary policies at the constituents’ expense. It is a useful tactic to drum up last-minute support for progressive candidates or to motivate more supporters to show up at the polls.
The power of real voices telling real stories cannot be understated. The recordings we receive are evergreen and can be used to create persuasion pieces, from radio ads to social media blasts. We can even drop the recordings on legislators’ office phones and answering machines to ensure that constituent voices are being heard.