The most critical tool in a state legislative campaign’s toolbox is candidate door knocking. Data has proven that no other campaign staff member is as effective at persuading a voter at the doors as the candidate themselves.
That’s why we created our signature Door Knocking Challenge. Participating candidates get rewarded with larger campaign contributions based on the number of doors they’ve knocked. Instead of dialing donors for dollars, candidates can focus on what matters: meeting their voters face-to-face in the field.
A Game-Changing Campaign Tactic: Pennsylvania Case Study
At The States Project, data drives every decision we make. That’s why we brought our Door Knocking Challenge to Pennsylvania in 2022 — a battleground state where we knew key races would be decided on the margins. Here’s how we know our Door Knocking Challenge made a difference in Pennsylvania, helping to flip control of the State House — by a single seat — to build a new majority for the first time in 12 years:
- In Pennsylvania, candidates who participated in our Door Knocking Challenge personally knocked a combined 136,000 doors. That’s 5.5x more doors than candidates who didn’t participate!
- Average number of doors knocked by candidates who were not part of the Challenge: 985
- Average number of doors knocked by candidates who participated in the Challenge: 7,574
- In the tipping point district that decided control of the chamber, Missy Cerrato personally knocked 5,500 doors as part of our Challenge. She ultimately won her race and flipped her seat by just 63 votes to end rightwing control in the State House.
We’re Bringing Our Door Knocking Challenge back to Virginia in 2023
Two years after the rightwing shifted the balance of power in the Virginia House of Delegates, both of Virginia’s legislative chambers are up for election.
In 2021, just 400 votes shifting across three seats would have maintained the House majority. And in the newest maps, both parties have a path to the majority. Regaining control of the House is within reach. And the earlier we can get candidates out knocking doors and meeting their voters, the better.
The Door Knocking Challenge, always a game-changer, is absolutely essential with margins like these.
The closest races + supercharged doorknocking = best shot to win.