Grandparents for Democracy
2024 FAQs

Grandparents for Democracy is a group of volunteers founded in 2018 to fight the existential threat that MAGA Republicans pose to our democracy. Our members, now in 17 states, support candidates for national office who will defend democratic principles and institutions, protect women’s rights, preserve our environment, and protect our young.

Q. Must I be a grandparent to join GfD?

A. Absolutely not! Of GfD’s two founding members, only one was a grandparent. And we have members as young as 18!

Q. Why should I volunteer?

A. Many of our members love the satisfaction we get from doing something to oppose policies that threaten the health, safety, and prosperity of future generations. Many of us also value the mental and physical health benefits studies show result from volunteering (especially for older adults), such as lowered stress and blood pressure—and even the possibility of a longer life. Our new volunteers often express their gratitude for the opportunity to channel their anxiety, frustration and anger into work that truly makes a difference!

Q. Do letters and postcards to voters really work?

A. Yes, they do! Studies show that targeted, personalized voter contact can indeed affect elections. A Vote Forward study, for example, showed that their personalized letter campaigns boosted voter turnout by as much as 3.4%. That’s why we use handwritten communications with voters located in the areas that are most likely to maximize election results.

Q. Why should I choose GfD over larger groups like Swing Left or Indivisible?

A. You don’t need to. We encourage you to support all groups that further your values.

However, we maximize our impact by carefully selecting just a few of the most critical battleground congressional campaigns located (with an occasional exception) in states that are also battlegrounds for the US Senate and presidency. That way each of our postcards can affect three elections, and we are better able to target precisely the right voters with the right messages. In addition, our partnerships with national groups such as Activate America, Swing Left and Field Team Six gives us access to their experiences and resources. And with GfD, you’ll also have the chance to help build a community, and to experience the comradery and personalized experience on which we pride ourselves!

Q. I’m new to all of this. How do I get started?

A. You will receive periodic emails from us describing new postcard campaigns and inviting you to reply with the number of cards you will write within the suggested time frame, and to make any other necessary arrangements. We then email you lists of voters and potential voters, the text to write on your postcards, and detailed instructions.

We do have our own GfD postcards (our 2022 cards are shown below). These cards are available at no charge to members who can pick them up in Fairfield or who order in bulk (at least 100 cards). Otherwise, we ask our members to purchase their own postcards and to pay for postage. We no longer accept donations to GfD; your financial contribution will consist of your postcard and postage expense.

Q. I have postcards left over from 2022. Can I use them?

A. You can use postcards of your choice so long as they have a relevant image on one side and a blank side for the handwritten message and address. As mentioned, we have GfD postcards and can provide you with links to choose from a host of other designs as well.

Q. I don’t live in a swing state. How can I make a difference?

A. Nearly all our work is done long distance. And as Election Day approaches, we may arrange for transportation into swing states for in-person voter contact. Plus, you can help us continue to build GfD by establishing new state chapters, recruiting members, and promoting our message on-line.

Q. What else can I do besides postcard writing?

A. Enlisting other volunteers is critical. And if you would like to organize postcard writing parties, we can help you with that. Getting new likes and follows for our Facebook page is also important in growing GfD. And we’re always open to new, creative ideas!

Q. How does GfD choose its Key Battleground Races?

A. We review the recommendations and research of groups such as Swing Left, Cook Political Report, Ballotopedia, etc., and do our own research in order to rank battleground Congressional districts. Our criteria include candidates’ alignment with our values, the strategic importance of the district, and the likelihood that our work can help win close races for the US House, Senate, and the presidency.

Q. Why does GfD emphasize democracy, choice, climate crisis, and gun violence issues?

A. We consider these to be existential issues, either for us individually or as a nation, that dovetail with grandparents’ obligations to their grandchildren… and to all other young people who depend on their elders to protect them and their world. We also consider MAGA Republicans to be particularly vulnerable on those issues.

Q. Can I get GfD swag—buttons, hats, car magnets, etc.?

A. Yes! Just ask for our price list, let us know the items you’d like, and we’ll provide you with a link to browse and buy on-line.