So, why is precinct organization so important?
As I’ve said before, the old “all politics is local” truism is pretty much true because politics is all about people – and “local” is where the people are.
In other words, that’s where the (potential) power is.
But since successful politics requires organization, that’s where precincts come in, because they’re the most local (or basic) unit in American politics.
Virtually everything in politics is built around them, like a series of large, overlapping political jigsaw puzzles. That means that, when it comes to elections or issue based lobbying campaigns, a focus on local precinct organization can have a big ripple effect on the things you care about.
So, how do you get started with precinct organization?
The best way to organize anything is to put someone in charge of it. For precincts, that means “precinct captains”. A precinct captain is someone who serves as a point of contact between the people in their local neighborhood and outside conservative political groups and activities.
Primary Goals for Effective Precinct Captains:
1: Identify ten other conservative activists
In order to put the meat on the bones of any organization, you need people, and that means identifying others who are willing to help. Try to identify at least ten.
2: Identify as many other conservative voters in the precinct as possible
Once a core group of activists has been identified, what should they do? Why, identify other fellow conservatives of course. (Successful politics is about addition and multiplication!)
3: Inform and mobilize precinct volunteers
Once a list of identified conservatives has been put together, the next step is to inform them and get them involved.
4: Stay informed
Keep up to date on current events in the area and identify potential projects and opportunities for activism – and pass the information on to others.
Five Tools for Precinct Organization
If you’re serious about organizing, focus on doing the basics. Here are some tools you’ll want to use:
1) A list of all registered voters in your precinct
This is your first priority…who’s registered to vote?
2) “Prospect” lists
Having a “warm” list of prospective conservatives makes your organization job easier.
3) Blank voter registration forms
If people aren’t registered, they can’t vote. And if they don’t vote, they don’t count.
4) A map of the precinct
Make it easier to organize by knowing who lives where.
5) Maintain a political events calendar
Let your people know what’s going on and how they can get involved. Things like local elections and public meetings are cyclical. Start a calendar.
These are just some highlights on why precinct organization is so important. The takeaway here is the importance of thinking local – and doing the basics.
The rest will begin to take care of itself.
(Get more tips like these in my “Grassroots 101 Training Series“. Check it out!)