Mission

Activate Virginia is a vehicle to address undemocratic phenomena in Virginia, catalyze the emerging popular movement, and achieve Democratic victories with strategies, tactics, and messages that can be replicated nationwide.

Since late 2016, we've been focused on three undemocratic features of VA government: lack of competitive elections, a corrupt campaign finance system, and gerrymandering. Public education has been the foundation of our success. 

Competition:

As part of a grassroots effort, we helped to recruit and educate an amazing field of candidates. This recruitment effort - largely independent from the state party - resulted in House of Delegates competition unseen in over 20 years. 

Campaign Finance:

We put together coalitions against accepting money from Dominion Energy and Appalachian Power - as well as in favor of banning contributions from public service corporations.

Gerrymandering:

Though we're hopeful this concern can be settled by the courts, Democratic electoral success is key to ensuring fair, non-partisan redistricting. The historic results of our November 2017 election put us within reach of Democratic control over the executive and legislative branches in Virginia. We'll continue to organize in select precincts critical to this mission. 

Public Education:

It's been our priority to inform the public about the structure and machinations of Virginia government, Virginia politics, special interests, and the rights and powers of citizens. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter

What's Next? 

As we continue to fight for democratic reform in Virginia, our focus will shift to securing legislative victories, reinvigorating the Democratic Party of Virginia, fighting corruption through public education, and encouraging Virginians to speak up, act out, and actualize the power inherent in democratic citizenship. 

Behind the Curtain

Activate Virginia was constituted to address an undemocratic status quo. We believe we're operating in politically exceptional times, and we're committed to realizing our potentials as citizens. Our team includes:

Josh Stanfield, Executive Director [josh@activatevirginia.org]

Rob Waters, R&D Director [rob@activatevirginia.org]

Nancy FrowertTreasurer [nancy@activatevirginia.org]

The Paradox

Activate Virginia is a political action committee registered with the Virginia Board of Elections, and all of our income and expenditures are open for public scrutiny. Yet we're operating in a special interest free-for-all due to our campaign finance laws (or lack thereof). The chart below outlines the extent of the problem. In order to actually compete in elections in Virginia, it's necessary to raise a tremendous amount of money.

We recognize this sordid state of affairs. We also understand that - in order to elect legislators who'll reform our campaign finance system - we have to thrive in an environment dominated by cash. We're willing to play the money game if that's what's required to effect change. Ultimately, our hope is to help elect representatives who pass reforms that make our existence as an organization impossible. In this paradoxical way we seem to be on a suicide mission. That's fine by us.  

Chart from Ballotpedia. 

Chart from Ballotpedia