A photo of Pike County, Georgia's District Attorney building.

At the end of 2020, the world turned its eyes to Georgia, where two US Senate races were going to runoff elections on January 5th. These races would ultimately decide control of the US Senate, and a stunning $937 million were spent before Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff each claimed victory.

The Environmental Voter Project — a national environmental nonprofit that spent only $550,000 in Georgia — used behavioral science-informed messaging to text, call, canvass, mail, and send digital ads to over 290,000 low propensity environmental voters for these elections, and we were proud to ultimately be responsible for boosting turnout among those voters by +0.9 percentage points over our control group.

But this isn't the story we want to tell. We want to tell you about what happened next.

After these elections, there was a huge whooshing noise as tens of thousands of campaigns, Super PACs, nonprofits, volunteers, activists, donors, and press left Georgia. But not us...not the Environmental Voter Project (EVP).

At EVP, we got right back to work because if you truly care about voter turnout, you can't just parachute into the big elections; instead, you must treat every election as a precious opportunity to build good voting habits and grow political power.

So do you know what we did? We started mobilizing low propensity environmental voters for the Griffin Judicial Circuit District Attorney special election being held on February 9th, 2021. 

"The what?"

That's right, the Griffin Judicial Circuit District Attorney special election. And, in case you didn't know, judicial circuits are when counties are too small to have their own judicial system, so they band together into a multi-county district.

And we know what you're wondering — no, this election had absolutely nothing to do with climate, the environment, or environmental policy-making. Zero. Zilch. Nada. But that's not the point. The point is that this small, mid-winter special election that everybody else ignored had everything to do with building good voting habits. And if you care about building good voting habits, well...the only way to turn non-voters into voters is to get them to vote in an election, so shame on us if we ever let any election pass without using it to make new voters.

And so, yes, EVP spent 3 weeks texting and calling low propensity environmental voters for this tiny DA's race in Georgia in February. We didn't know who was running. We don't know who won. But we're 100% sure it was a golden opportunity to continue building an unstoppable voting bloc of environmental voters in Georgia.

It is because of this unique, every election approach that — since 2017 — the Environmental Voter Project has helped turn 66,929 non-voting and seldom-voting Georgians into consistent super-voters who now vote in federal, state, and even local elections. Those results don't happen when you only talk to voters every 2 years; they happen when you never skip an election.

It's hard work. It's a lot of work. But it has a huge impact...and that's why we pay attention to weird elections like the Griffin Judicial Circuit DA election in the middle of February.

Join us: environmentalvoter.org

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