DemDaily: Obama Out of the Shadows

June 14, 2018

Organizing for Action (OFA), the national grassroots organization that evolved from Barack Obama's 2008 presidential campaign operation, is refocusing its mission to target key contests in the midterm elections and in states critical to the 2020 census and redistricting.

An outgrowth of the Obama for America campaign organization, and a project of the Democratic National Committee (DNC), Organizing For America's original mission was to mobilize supporters in favor of Obama's legislative priorities, particularly his 2009 stimulus package and health care reform. It was reorganized in January of 2013 as a 501c4, non-profit called Organizing for Action.

While the 50-state operation has historically focused on organizing around policy campaigns, the shift towards politics is an indication of the former President's priorities and what we hope to be his public re-engagement in the battles facing his party in this cycle and next

Following the 2016 election, Obama partnered with former Attorney General Eric Holder to play an influential, but low-profile role in the formation of the National Democratic Redistricting Committee (NDRC), to combat legislative gerrymandering ahead of the 2020 Census and redistricting.

Redistricting is the process of re-drawing electoral district boundaries for the purposes of electing representatives to a legislative body. it is done every ten years, following the population count by the US Census Bureau, to reflect the adjusted population of each state and the division of its Congressional and legislative districts.

President Obama and NDRC head Eric Holder (pic: DailyKos)

Although the total number of 435 US Congressional Districts (CDs) was established under the 1929 reapportionment act, it is individual state constitutions and laws that mandate the process for deciding how the boundaries of each of those Congressional Districts will be drawn, or re-drawn.

Gerrymandering is the practice of drawing or manipulating those district lines to the unfair political advantage of a particular party or group.

OFA will work with the NDRC in nine states where there are ballot initiatives, gubernatorial and legislative elections that will influence the redrawing of the 2021 congressional map.


The centerpiece of OFA's mid-term strategy, however, appears to be on the turnout of Democratic-leaning voters in a targeted 27 Congressional Districts that could deliver the net-23 seats Democrats need to take control of the US House.

Those CDs include: AZ-02 * CA-04 * CA-10 * CA-21 * CA-25 * CA-39 * CA-45 * CA-48 * CA-49 * CO-06 * IA-01 * IL-06 * KS-03 * MN-02 * MN-03 * MO-02 * NC-09 * NC-13 * NJ-11 * NY-11 * PA-01 * PA-06 * PA-07 * TX-07 * TX-23 * TX-32 * WI-01.


DemDaily: Con-Census on the Question 3/29/18
DemDaily: Gerrymandering Justice 1/11/18

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Kimberly Scott

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Sources: Politico, New York Times, Bustle

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