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VAN continues to provide technology advantage for Democrats


Washington, D.C. – VAN, the voter contact and volunteer management tool by NGP VAN, continued to provide a technology advantage to Democrats and progressives across the country in 2013. The VAN helped candidates in swing states like Virginia win close races over Republicans by powering a larger and more efficient field and get out the vote program. The VAN was widely acknowledged as helping to power President Obama’s superior voter contact and volunteer management programs during the 2008 and 2012 campaigns.

In Virginia, the VAN powered the McAuliffe and Northam campaigns to victory, as well as those of the Democrats winning new seats in the state legislature. The McAuliffe campaign knocked on 2.5 million doors during the campaign, and had 12,000 volunteers on Saturday of the last weekend, all powered by VoteBuilder, the VAN version used by Democratic candidates. In emails to supporters during the last two days, the McAuliffe campaign asked supporters to click through to the VAN Virtual Phone Bank tool, which allowed supporters to make GOTV calls from “wherever you are.” 

“No doubt, VoteBuilder really made a difference for us,” said Michael Halle, Virginia Democratic Party Coordinated Campaign Director. “VoteBuilder enabled us to target our outreach and build support for Terry McAuliffe and Democrats in every corner of the Commonwealth. The Turf Cutter tool helped us to efficiently and effectively find the right people to call and door-knock. The Virtual Phone Bank application was a force multiplier, empowering our volunteers to make phone calls from any location.”

NGP VAN also is helping bring the Obama model of integrated organizing, fundraising and field tools to down-ticket campaigns. For example, 47 of the 68 Democratic House of Delegate campaigns in Virginia used the VAN organizing tool, but also the NGP fundraising and digital tools, most of them through packages offered through partnerships with the Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee and EMILY’s List (including delegate elects Futrell and Mason, both of whom knocked off incumbents). Democratic campaigns and progressive groups made a total of 3,162,173 door knocks in Virginia. 

VAN also helped power the successful Bill de Blasio for New York Mayor and Marty Walsh for Boston Mayor campaigns along with dozens of other candidates who won Tuesday.

“VoteBuilder powered our ground game with indispensable volunteer management and voter contact tools, and the team got us set up quickly and had our back all the way through the last door knock on Election Day,” said Bill Hyers, Campaign Manager for New York City mayor-elect Bill de Blasio. “I’m glad we had this amazing resource!”

The VAN helps organizers execute field plans that knock the right doors and make the right phone calls in the most efficient way, collect the right information and holds the data for future coordinated voter contact. Almost every Democratic candidate uses the VAN, as well as most progressive organizers. Voted the “Most Valuable Technology” of 2012 by several thousand progressive organizers at the New Organizing Institute’s RootsCamp conference, VAN powered more than 260 million phone calls and 92 million door knocks to voters, and was used by 180,000 campaign staff and supporters, throughout the country during the 2012 campaign cycle.

“We took the same tools that we used to help President Obama win re-election in 2012 and made them available to Democrats up and down the ticket so they could know who voted in real time, target their pitch effectively and use their resources strategically,” said Stu Trevelyan, NGP VAN’s CEO. “Congratulations to all of our clients on their hard-earned victories. We’ll take what we learned this year to make our tools even better for 2014.”

Some key numbers from Tuesday's election include:

- More than 4.1 million doors knocked across Virginia and almost 3.4 million phone calls by more than 55,000 volunteers over more than 162,000 volunteer shifts.

- In New York City, more than 18,000 volunteers knocked on more than 3.2 million doors and made almost 4.6 million phone calls across almost 126,000 volunteer shifts. 

- In the Boston election, almost 2.4 million doors were knocked and almost 1.5 million phone calls were made by 14,000 volunteers over 46,000 volunteer shifts. 

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NGP VAN is the leading technology provider to Democratic and progressive campaigns and organizations, offering clients an integrated platform of the best fundraising, organizing and digital products. NGP VAN counts thousands of campaigns and organizations amongst its clients, including President Obama’s re-election, all the national Democratic committees, thousands of Democratic campaigns, thousands of progressive PACs and non-profits, and non-partisan PACs and other organizations.