After seeing disappointing results in the last three election cycles, Republicans are finally getting serious about embracing new election tactics. The Republican National Committee has rolled out Phase 2 of its Bank Your Vote campaign, which expands the campaign to all 50 states. Bank Your Vote was announced last year by RNC Chair Ronna McDaniel, in a vow to "beat the Democrats at their own game." Bank Your Vote is a national effort to encourage Republicans to vote early or by mail if they can, and to utilize ballot harvesting in states where it's legal.
The effort is long overdue for the GOP, which has fallen behind Dems in so-called electioneering, i.e. mail-in ballots, turning out early voters, and ballot harvesting. "We've got to stop getting killed in early voting and mail-in ballots," says Matt Mackowiak, Texas-based GOP Consultant. "This is a sophisticated, technically savvy effort to try to make up some of that disadvantage that we've had in recent election cycles."
"The last several election cycles, Republicans have been engaging in unilateral disarmament," he continues. "By not focusing on the single most reliable way to ensure that someone actually votes, which is early voting or voting by mail."
Republican voters have traditionally been much more reluctant to vote early or by mail than Democrats, choosing to wait until Election Day to vote in person. But with so much on the line in this year's election, Mackowiak says it's time to get over that resistance. "If the Democrats are going to vote early and if they're going to vote by mail, I don't see why we would unilaterally disarm and just give them that banked vote advantage," he tells KTRH.
Even former President Donald Trump has embraced the Bank Your Vote effort. Mackowiak believes GOP voters will warm to the campaign as well, especially in states like Texas which have long had early voting already. "It is actually far more convenient to vote early than it is to vote on Election Day, particularly in a presidential year when lines are going to be as long as at any other election time," he says. "Anything we can do to make sure our voters actually vote, and do it in the most convenient, reliable way possible, is all to the good."