This is the part where I tell you what you already may be thinking; that you’re the person who should run. Because New Jersey needs (desperately) more progressives in office, more people who reach toward policy that is good for the people, based on bedrock values and not the transactional politics that rule this place. And almost as important as that; this state needs more women in elected office, at all levels. Pick one. Run hard. Get in.
Here’s some training to get you launched. This is the annual Ready to Run Campaign Training – for women, at Rutgers. And what a perfect year. With the Assembly at top of the ticket, it’s a low turnout election. And that means that your friends & supporters will have maximum impact at the ballot box running the canvass, VBM, Post It parties that mostly women ran this year, and brilliantly. Women just helped – just led – the grassroots effort to flip 4 congressional districts. In many cases, rode a sharp learning curve to do it. Not run by the local county parties, some of which have been weakened and corrupted by New Jersey’s system of political rewards for political loyalty. Nope, we have some women who launched right the hell over all that. The real leaders in this state, whether they know it yet or not. Who can you encourage to run? Who will you let talk you into it?
Truth told, this is not my favorite campaign training.** Mostly because its bipartisan. Leaders and skilled practitioners of both parties teach, and women of both parties learn side-by-side. In training, the strategies I mostly want to discuss are things I’m not interested in sharing with the other party. That said, it’s purely amazing the work that the Center for American Women and Politics (CAWP) does, studying and tracking women’s progress in political life, and for years now, encouraging the same in Ready to Run. This program is sincerely encouraging of women, and also a safe space for women who may wonder how they can ‘do this’ with everything they already have on their plates. They will tell you you can, because you can. And CAWP has the research to tell you why, and the training to show you how.
2019 Ready to Run Campaign Training for Women
When: March 15-16 [Pre-conference programs for women of color March 15]
Where: Douglass Student Center, Rutgers NB campus
About the program: [Link] Two tracks, choose one
Diversity Initiative: [Link] Programs aiming to increase participation of women of color in politics. Held the day before.
Conference Agenda: [Link]
Register: [Link] Registration fee $150 through 2/11/2019 or $195 after. Includes meals & all conference materials.
Scholarship Opportunities: [Link]
** Best IMO? That’s a tossup between Democracy for America’s training [which needs to be restarted when new leader Yvette Simpson (w00t!) comes in January 1] – meanwhile, here’s all DFA’s free online trainings and how to request an on-the-ground trainings. I’m also a huge proponent of the excellent Camp Wellstone. Both DFA & Wellstone trainings seem to be on hiatus right now, and I hope that changes. But I’m not going to sour you on Ready to Run. I did the training when it first started, and I still have friends from that day. The professionals & electeds CAWP brings in are most all New Jersey practitioners (not true of the other trainings). And especially if you’re just getting your feet wet, sitting with those folks, and talking about not just winning, but winning in NJ – and as a woman – is inspiring as hell. I’m a huge proponent of CAWP’s groundbreaking work.