Over a dozen progressive groups run digital ads on voting rights, against new Georgia law

From corporate accountability ads to grassroots petitions, Democrats are united in using Republican opposition to voting rights as a hammer online

Following the passage of Georgia’s voter suppression bill two weeks ago, Democratic campaigns, committees, and progressive nonprofits are mounting a concerted online effort to go on offense for voting rights, in Georgia and elsewhere.

Supporting, defending, and expanding the right to vote has been a key pillar of Democratic messaging recently (see H.R. 1), and we’ve seen that over a dozen organizations have recently worked the issue into their messaging online. 

Stacey Abrams’ Fair Fight Action has been dominating the fight over SB 202 in Georgia. They mobilized Georgians before, during, and after the 2020 elections and the Senate runoffs to defend the right to vote in the Peach State, and they’ve been more engaged than just about anyone in fighting the new election law.

In the past month, Fair Fight Action has spent over $175,869 on Facebook advertising - almost all of which went to targeting Georgians, making them the top spender in the state - and $276,200 on Google ads organizing against its passage and slamming its proponents:   

While Fair Fight Action has begun attacking legislators who voted for the bill, SEIU and Progress Georgia are running a large-scale digital advertising campaign focused on holding Georgia’s corporations accountable. The groups are highlighting contributions that the state’s 6 largest companies have made to Republican politicians. They’ve spent around $50,000 on Facebook advertising on the issue, and several thousand dollars on Snapchat at the end of March. We’ve spotted these ads up on Facebook and Snapchat:

Some other groups running digital advertising around voting rights, voter suppression, and the Georgia law include the ACLU and ACLU of Georgia, American Federation of Teachers, SPLC Action Fund, NAACP Legal Defense Fund, Women’s March, and MoveOn.

Meanwhile, Democrats in Washington have been highlighting the blatant injustice of the Georgia bill to activate grassroots supporters online. Sen. Raphael Warnock’s campaign is running the below acquisition ads aimed at building his supporter list (Remember, he has to run for re-election next year):

...and in addition to some stellar online work promoting the American Rescue Plan, the Democratic National Committee has made an effort to make voting rights central to their messaging online - they’re running these straight-to-camera video ads from Chair Jaime Harrison on Facebook and Google, using the bill to motivate supporters to sign up. 

While we’ll likely see many more of these types of ads and campaigns from national progressive groups and Democrats in the weeks to come, Republicans continue to push Georgia copycat bills to curtail voting rights in other states around the country. In fact, the Brennan Center calculated that as of March 24th, bills restricting voting have been introduced in 47 states.

Digital advertising on the right remains limited in scope, but a few notable spenders include the Heritage Foundation, which has spent around $40,000 over the past 30 days on Facebook ads like the ones below claiming our elections are “in jeopardy” and pushing “election integrity” messaging in Texas, Florida and Arizona. Also up with Facebook ads is Restoration PAC, which is somehow allowed to run these videos on Facebook claiming “illegal votes” from immigrants “cancel out legitimate votes.”