Bernie Work FAQ for Chapters At A Glance
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Our goal is to help chapters build maximum power in their local terrain. Chapters themselves will decide whether and how to support Bernie Sanders.
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Still have questions? Fill out this form and we'll get back to you!
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Can we do the following activity in our chapter if we do...an Independent Expenditure (IE)*a Coordinated Campaign
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Buy supplies and print flyers for a canvas?YES - we can spend unlimited amountsNO - Coordinated corporate contributions to a federal candidate are illegal. You would have to depend entirely on the campaign's materials.
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Run an issue canvass (Sanders + local campaign) with our own literature and messaging?YES - we can spend unlimited amountsNO - Coordinated corporate contributions to a federal candidate are illegal. You would have to depend entirely on the campaign's materials.
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Donate supplies for an action or get members to donate them?YES - we can spend unlimited amountsNO - these are considered in-kind donations and they are illegal.
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Send members to volunteer for the Sanders campaign?YES - anything that is publicly posted by the Sanders campaign you can share with members and the public through DSA channels. No independent effort (in other words, our IE) should be getting any non-public information from the campaign.YES
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Switch from a Independent Expenditure to a Coordinated CampaignYES - if you run an IE you can switch to a coordinated campaign later. n/a
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Swtich from a Coordinated Campaign to an Independent Expenditure?n/aNO - If you switch from a coordinated campaign to an independent expnditure effort it is hard to prove that the independent effort was not influenced by information received from the official campaign in the course of the prior coordinated effort.
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Build power by keeping the list of people we talk to on doors or at events so we can develop their skills during the campaign and continue organizing them after the election?YES - we keep the entire listUNLIKELY. While a chapter coordinating its efforts with the Bernie campaign would be theoretically allowed to retain the contact information for the people it communicated with, the fact that such efforts will have to use Bernie campaign resources (because DSA chapters can't spend money on coordinated efforts) will practically mean that you will be using voter files and tracking tools provided by the Bernie campaign, and it will be unlikely to let DSA retain a copy of such lists.
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Focus on working class and poor voters, who are less likely to vote, instead of frequent voters, who tend to be more economically comfortable and thus are more dependable for campaigns to turn out?YES - that is part of our National Electoral StrategyMAYBE - if the campaign targets those voters in your community
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Have a member who also works for the Sanders campaign volunteer at our events?YES - if they sign a statement (we will provide) that they understand that they must (1) absent themselves from conversations about how to deploy resources and (2) abstain from any votes regarding sending resources to the IE and (3) have nothing to say about any other aspect of using resources, such as timing, messaging, or targeting of your electoral efforts.YES
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* Remember that, while permissible, these activities must comply with applicable disclaimer and reporting rules! Click here to go to the DSA form for reporting Expenditures for your independent expenditure work.
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