Something big happened after the 2010 midterm elections: the partisan balance of state legislatures all over the country swung like a pendulum to the right. This was no accident. It was the result of a few factors, key among which was the Republican REDMAP strategy, which targeted state legislative seats and chambers for Republican takeover. The strategy was extremely effective — all told, Democrats lost about 1,000 state legislative seats since REDMAP, and Republicans now control more than ⅔ of all state legislative chambers.
Sister District harnesses the energy, creativity and resources of grassroots volunteers across the country to restore Democratic majorities to state legislatures across the country. Borrowing from the concept of “sister cities,” our unique organizing model “sisters” each of our 65+ active teams to a couple of great Democratic candidates in specific swing legislative districts for fundraising and field support.
Our 2018 political strategy involves targeting three types of state chambers:
Chambers in key battleground states that are unlikely to flip blue, often due to Republican gerrymandering, where gains this year can bust Republican supermajorities and/or have significant impact on post-2020 redistricting.
Below, we provide charts that display the changes in our targeted chambers over time. In particular, take note of the significant partisan swings that occurred between 2010 and 2011, after the REDMAP elections. These visuals display the dramatic erosion in Democratic power at the state level over the past 8 years, and show why Democrats can no longer afford to look past state and local elections.
Check out our interactive map of the composition of state legislative chambers and governorships between 2008–2018.