Swing the State 2022

Read our 2022 newsletter!


We’re fighting for a Durham and a North Carolina where every person and every family has access to resources they need to thrive and to feel secure, safe and cared for.

But right now, security, safety, and care feel so out of reach for too many of us. Inflation and the increase in gas prices continue to shrink hard-earned paychecks. While COVID continues to disproportionately impact Black, Latinx, Indigenous, working-class, and disabled people,, too many NC residents are uninsured. Instead of funding mental health care, addiction prevention and treatment services, and reproductive health care, our public resources go into criminalizing our communities for even having those needs.
Unjust state and federal policies manifest in the streets of Durham in heartbreaking ways: Economic insecurity and lack of access to care exacerbate our crisis of gun violence, taking away our Black and Brown youth from their families and loved ones.

This November, we have an opportunity to elect leaders who are committed to addressing these issues and will fight alongside us for safer and more economically secure communities. We can (and therefore, must) elect leaders who will fight to increase the minimum wage, expand access to healthcare, invest in our children and their teachers, and reduce our communities’ interactions with the criminal justice systems. 

That’s why we are reaching out to 15,000 newly registered voters of all races in Durham: the other swing voters who can transform our government if they step into their voting power.

Though our vision of a North Carolina for everyone who calls it home doesn’t become real overnight in one election, each election cycle is a crucial stepping stone to build the political and governing power of the multiracial middle and working classes.

Will you join us in our electoral organizing for the 2022 midterms?

Statement on General Election Results

North Carolina, and the US more broadly, are in a high stakes political period. Two fundamentally different paths (multiracial democracy versus reactionary racist extremism) have emerged and are diverging. For each election in this period the stakes get higher and higher.

Today, we are heartened by the victories of Vernetta Alston and Ray Jeffers. And, even though Cheri Beasley, Lucy Inman, and Sam Ervin IV did not win, we are proud of the values they represent and the immense effort we put into trying to get them elected.

Durham For All, along with many organizations in North Carolina, fought for two outcomes in this election. First, to stop Republicans from having enough representatives in the North Carolina General Assembly (NCGA) to pass harmful and hateful laws without Governor Cooper being able to veto them. We narrowly succeeded in this outcome – Governor Cooper will still have veto power against the “Don’t Say Gay” style bills and the attempts to take away abortion access for North Carolinians and those from other Southern states that are forced to travel here for care. This is something to cheer about but it also means our margin for staving off a Republican takeover next election has grown thinner. 

Second, was to keep the 4-3 Democratic majority on the State Supreme Court that would provide much needed checks and balances on the NCGA. In this we did not succeed and represents a worrying, yet momentary, setback. One thing we’ll be able to build on in future elections is having brought much needed attention to the importance of the State Supreme Court in the fight for a North Carolina where all can thrive.

Although we experienced mixed results and a temporary setback at the conclusion of these midterms, we are brimming with pride and gratitude for the countless number of hours our over 300 volunteers and 30 campaign team members put into making Swing the State 2022 Durham for All’s most successful electoral campaign in regards to the number of voters contacted and the number of new leaders identified and developed. 

Swing the State 2022 Voter outreach efforts: Canvassing: 5,415 attempts and 920 conversations | phonebanking: 9647 calls and 727 convos | Textbanking 93,155 texts and 7,059 conversation | all together: 206,787 attempts and 16,685 conversation

We did not achieve all of the short term outcomes we strove for but together we keep our sights set on our north star— a Durham and North Carolina where all of our communities can flourish. It is important to be clear eyed about what we are able to learn from our successes and the ways we came up short in the elections and in our campaign. However, it is equally important to remember that the freedom and transformation we are devoted to and steadfast in bringing into fruition is a multi-year endeavor that will have its ups and downs; and we are fortunate to be standing on the shoulders of previous movements for a multiracial democracy that overcame tremendous odds to push our state and country forward.

As we continue our righteous and just fight together, I leave you with these words from Arundhati Roy: “Another world is not only possible, she is on her way. On a quiet day, I can hear her breathing.”

In Solidarity,
Whitney Maxey
Executive Director

General Election Endorsements

In collaboration with Carolina Federation

For the 2022 general elections Durham for All, in collaboration with the Carolina Federation, is endorsing Lucy Inman for State Supreme Court, Sam Ervin IV for State Supreme Court, Vernetta Alston for House District 29, and Ray Jeffers for House District 2. These are in addition to our endorsement of Cheri Beasley for U.S. Senate during the primary election. 

This election we are on the precipice of the anti-democratic right wing strengthening their hold on the General Assembly and the State Supreme Court. The election of these candidates will be crucial in order to hold the line against an all out assault from the far right; and in order to create more possibilities for equity, inclusivity, and justice in all facets of our lives.

Cheri Beasley for U.S. Senate

Cheri Beasley has a commitment to fight for the interests of all North Carolinians. Especially people of color and working people who have been systematically left out and left behind. If she wins, she would be North Carolina’s first Black Senator.

Cheri Beasley knows we are facing a far right that is passing hundreds of laws across the country that are destructively targeting our democracy, the rights of people of color, public institutions like our schools, women and LGBTQ+ reproductive rights, and so much more.

To support the economic and social health of working families and communities she will take action to:

  • pass a paid family and medical leave program
  • pass the Women’s Health Protection Act (codifying Roe v. Wade)
  • invest more money in public schools – including raising teacher pay – especially in high poverty areas.

Cheri recognizes the existential threats of the climate crisis and the need for communities to have economic security. Therefore, she will fight for investments to:

  • improve infrastructure and renewable energy to create good-paying jobs
  • increase the minimum wage to $15 per hour.

Finally, Cheri Beasley will defend and expand our democracy. Especially for voters that are disproportionately impacted by voter suppression and nullification — voters of color, rural voters, disabled people, and young voters. She supports the Freedom to Vote Act and the John Lewis Voting Rights Act. Both federal bills promote fair redistricting, protect vote by mail, reduce long lines on election day, and begin to mitigate the harmful impact of anti-democratic laws that are already being passed in states like North Carolina. 

Lucy Inman and Sam Ervin IV for NC Supreme Court

The North Carolina Supreme Court is a key site of struggle where the two radically different visions for the United States will play out in this general election.
The balance of power on the court rests with electing both of these candidates. We are one election away from losing the 4-3 Democratic majority that works to protect and expand rights for North Carolinians. We could instead have a court (with a 4-3 Republican majority) that issues rulings based on a narrow set of conservative religious beliefs that ignore the rights of others, especially people of color, women, LGBTQ+ people, and working people.
One example: The current State Supreme Court ruled that the Republican redistricting maps were gerrymandered in such a way that it diluted the votes of Democrats (many of whom are people of color, young, etc.) and created electoral districts that gave an outsized amount of voting power to Republican voters. That ruling led to a process where a fairer set of maps were drawn for use only in this midterm election. Following these elections, the GOP-led General Assembly will need to draw new electoral maps. If Republicans gain a 4-3 majority, there is little doubt that it would rule in favor of the General Assembly’s partisan and racial gerrymandered maps.

Lucy Inman and Sam Ervin, know that our laws in North Carolina say:

  • Everyone has a right to pursue and obtain work
  • We all have equal protection under the law
  • Our children have a right to a sound and basic education. 

Their records as judges prove that they strive to be principled and judicious when making judgements or issuing rulings on cases. 

Simply put: Vernetta Alston and Ray Jeffers both embody the kind of progressive movement candidates that we need in the General Assembly. They both stand for economic, racial, gender, and climate justice. And have demonstrated a presence and commitment to working with and alongside Durham communities and multiracial political organizations.

Through Durham for All’s Swing the State 2022, we will be working with partner organizations to to go all out for the bold and exciting candidates we have endorsed or re-endorsed. Since April, we have been talking with thousands of Durhamites about the issues they care most about, the stakes of this midterm election, and the importance of organizing to build people power beyond one election to bring about the changes our communities need and deserve.

RSVP to one of our Durham Decides meetings that are themed “one election away” to discuss the issues and rights that are at stake in this election and learn ways to take collective action with us. 

Click here to RSVP for Durham Decides #4 (Oct 6th): Abortion Access and the 2022 Midterms
Click here RSVP for Durham Decides #5 (Oct 20th): Public Education, Trans Youth, and the 2022 Midterms
Click here to RSVP for Durham Decides #6 (Nov 3rd): Democracy Under Attack and the 2022 Midterms

Bring your loved ones and join us in powering our endorsed candidates to victory.

Durham Decides

Bi-weekly meetings: campaign updates and "One Election Away" series

Throughout this election cycle, we held bi-weekly Durham Decides meetings to talk about how we could win in November and beyond.

Our Path to Power

In August and September, Durham Decides meetings followed an exciting theme: Our Path to Power:

Durham Decides #1: D4A Strategic Vision and Swing the State 2022

On August 11th, we discussed our strategic objective, our path to victory, and how the issues our communities care about and are fighting for are an integral part of that victory.



Durham Decides #2: What’s Getting in the Way?
This one is about our enemy, the New Confederacy. Who are they? What kinds of policies and ideas are they fighting for? How did they come to power? And how can we defeat them?




Durham Decides #3: Ways We Are Winning
We focused on ways left progressive organizations are making gains. Our special guest, Jon Liss Co-Director of New Virginia Majority (NVM), discussed how NVM flipped their state and federal seats blue with a similar strategy to D4A.


One Election Away

In October and November, Durham Decides meetings will followed a crucial theme: One Election Away. 

Durham Decides #4: Abortion Access and the 2022 Midterms
Our partner organization Prochoice NC joined us to discuss what reproductive justice is, how reproductive rights –especially the rights of working people and communities of color–  will come under further attack depending on the outcome of the elections, and how NC’s fight against these newest assaults on our reproductive rights starts, but doesn’t end, with these midterm elections.

Durham Decides #5: Public Education, Trans Youth, and the 2022 Midterms:
Durham Association of Educators joined us to discuss the stakes of 2022 midterm elections when it comes to public education and our youth in NC. What happens to the quality of the education young people receive? How will their teachers’ lives and wellbeing be impacted? How do we ensure that our queer youth have access to safe, affirming learning spaces and resourced emotional and psychological support in schools? And why engaging in elections is critical for 2022 and subsequent elections.

Durham Decides #6: Democracy Under Attack and the 2022 Midterms
For the 2022 midterms and beyond, it is no exaggeration to say that we were one election away from democracy being further dismantled in North Carolina by an anti-democratic Republican Party; and that it would take all of us to protect and expand democracy in NC and the US as a whole. At Durham Decides #6 we talked with partner organizations who have been fighting for years against voter suppression, gerrymandering, and other efforts to keep our people away from the ballot box.

Swing the State 2022 Cookout

Saturday, July 9th, 12-3pm


Join us for some food and fun as we enjoy the summer weather together. Durham For All Cookout - Saturday, July 9th, 12-3pm, Lyon Park

Together is the best way to process everything that’s going on in our city and our country right now. In community, we grieve our losses, celebrate our commitments and wins, and fortify ourselves for what comes next.

Join Durham For All on Saturday, July 9th at the Swing the State 2022 Cookout for some food, relationship building, and re-grounding in possibility. 

Our Swing the State 2022 Cookout will be a space for all of us to deepen our relationships and cultivate some joy that will fuel us for the work ahead of us. We will leave the cookout more united and spiritually and emotionally fortified to take on the battle that lays ahead of us for the 2022 midterms and beyond.

In the midst of so much change going on in our city and country, it is important to find moments of joy, love, and appreciation to keep us going and bring us together

We’ll have fun activities setup for kids as well. Come through and bring your friends, family, neighbors, and the little ones in your life.

Click here to read more about the COVID protocols, RSVP, and share the event with your friends.

See you on Saturday, July 9th, 12-3pm, at Lyon Park! 

Statement on 2022 Primary Results

Congratulations to our endorsed candidates for running principled races, centered around community and care: Cheri Beasley for US Senate, Nida Allam for US House, and Satana Deberry for Durham District Attorney! These candidates and what they stand for are emblematic of Durham for All’s values that are centered on safety, care, and community.

Cheri Beasley and Satana Deberry emerged triumphant from their primaries. While Nida Allam did not win her primary, we know she will continue her stellar work on Durham’s County Commission. We are proud to have endorsed all three of these bold candidates. 

Cheri Beasley and Satana Deberry now face different paths as we head towards the general election this fall:

Cheri Beasley’s race for US Senate will be more competitive in the general election as she will be running against Ted Budd, a radical right wing candidate. Budd represents regressive ideas and policies that look to further undo over 50 years of progress in civil rights, women’s rights, worker’s rights, and LGBTQ+ rights: restricting or eliminating a person’s right to access safe abortions, systematically disenfranchising people of color, promoting the idea that Black and Brown people are maliciously vying to replace white people in the United States, and more. Cheri Beasley stands in stark contrast to these types of threats to our democracy by: supporting a national policy that would codify Roe v. Wade, fighting to strengthen and build on civil rights for all marginalized people in the United States, and believing that our country can live up to the idea of a multiracial democracy where all can thrive.

District Attorney Deberry’s victory in the primary means she is guaranteed to continue her excellent work as District Attorney in Durham. She has proven time and again that she shares Durham for All’s values of equity, inclusion, and justice for all. DA Deberry will continue her diligent work to change the conditions that disproportionately increase Black and Brown communities’ interactions with the criminal justice system. Her steadfast commitment and practice is towards reallocating resources from punitive tools and processes to preventative measures and care-focused solutions that address the root causes of violence.

For the primary and election season, Durham for All (D4A) volunteer teams canvassed, phonebanked, and texted over 20,000 newly registered Durhamites about our endorsed candidates and the issues that they care about the most. Dozens of these voters took action with us by coming to events or doing outreach to other Durham voters. We’re grateful to our member leaders and volunteers for their dedication and commitment to the work of community organizing and electoral power building. Seven weeks of voter engagement and hundreds of conversations affirmed that housing climate change, public education, and healthcare were the top issues on people’s minds as they headed to the polls.

As we approach the general elections this fall, we are strengthening our organizational partnerships in Durham and across the state in order to beat back the advance of the far right and do what’s in our collective power to get solid Democratic candidates elected. Our ability to fight for a more progressive Durham will be tested in the general election as we face radical right-wing candidates at the state and federal level—Candidates who will use all their resources to restrict and eliminate progressive possibilities in our great city and state. 

On June 18th, we’ll come together to talk about how we can use the general election to turn the tide towards a more just and equitable Durham and North Carolina. We invite you to join us as we gear up for this pivotal fight to stop the march towards hate filled and regressive politics that negatively impact the communities we live in, love in, and care for.

Click here to RSVP for Swing the State Community Meeting on Saturday, June 18th, 11:00 am – 12:30 pm at West End Community Foundation (1309 Halley Street). 

Transforming our city and state is possible when we build our movement and collective power. The work starts now. Join us.

Campaign Kickoff

Thursday, March 31st from 6-8pm

RSVP to our virtual event!

Swing the State Campaign Kickoff, March 31st, 6-8 PM, online event on zoom

Join us in enacting one of our core values: Democracy For All!

We will be discussing our upcoming Swing The State 2022 campaign: We’ll dive into the candidates we’ve endorsed in collaboration with Carolina Federation and with D4A members’ participation  the actions we’re going to take to elect them to the office, and most importantly, how you can plug in!
Bring your friends, your family, and your neighbors. D4A needs all of you win big in the upcoming midterm elections, and we’re excited to build with you!

Click here to RSVP for Swing the State Campaign Kickoff on Thursday, March 31st, 6-8 PM.

Primary Election Endorsements

Find your polling location!

For the 2022 midterms Durham for All, in collaboration with the Carolina Federation, has endorsed Cheri Beasley for U.S. Senate and Nida Allam for US Congressional District 4. Additionally, Durham for All voted to re-endorse Satana Deberry for District Attorney.

Individually and collectively we believe they will carry on the work and vision that Durham for All and its partner organizations have for people in North Carolina to have more equity, inclusivity, and justice in all facets of their lives. 

Cheri Beasley for US Senate, Nida Allam for US House: CD4

Cheri Beasley and Nida Allam share a commitment to fighting for the interests of all North Carolinians. Especially people of color and working people who have been systematically left out and left behind. If they win, Nida would be the first Muslim elected from a Southern state and Cheri would be North Carolina’s first Black Senator.

We endorse their platforms because:

  • Both candidates are committed to raising the minimum wage to at least $15 per hour and providing more protections and rights for employees.
  • They will work to further the fight for a person’s reproductive freedom by supporting the Women’s Health Protection Act, which would codify Roe v. Wade into federal law.
  • North Carolina has over 13% of its population uninsured (one of the highest in the country). Cheri and Nida will work hard to expand access to quality, affordable healthcare to the millions in this country who are uninsured or underinsured.
  • They are committed to investing in children and their futures. They would push for higher teacher pay and more funding for schools in the poorest neighborhoods as a way to invest in North Carolina’s public schools which are the heart of our communities.
  • They both understand the existential threats of the climate crisis and threats to this country’s democracy and will work towards solutions that can begin to save our planet and our democracy.


Satana Deberry for District Attorney

District Attorney Satana Deberry also shares our vision of equity, inclusion, and justice for all. In 2018, Durham for All endorsed her and joined a coalition of organizations to help power her to victory.

Here’s a few of initiatives DA Satana Deberry has taken towards ending mass incarceration, advancing justice, and advancing equity in the past four years:

  • In 2019, her office implemented a pretrial release policy that discourages money bail and pretrial detention in non-violent cases.
  • District Attorney Deberry has led the effort to dismiss, or have alternatives to incarceration for, low-level charges in cases involving substance use, poverty, homelessness, or involving individuals with little to no prior criminal history.
  • The DA’s office has worked with the Criminal Justice Resource Center (CJRC) to utilize diversion tools and programs (e.g., restorative justice, cognitive behavioral therapy, and addiction treatment) that can address root causes of certain offenses. There are a total of 27 people with lower-level felony cases that are going or have gone through this diversion program.
  • Since 2020 the District Attorney’s office has certified over 500 temporary visas (sometimes up to 4 years) that provide benefits and protections for immigrants.
  • In the midst of Durham County’s rise in gun violence, her office is working hard to stem the impacts on our communities.

If re-elected, DA Deberry will continue to change the conditions that disproportionately increase Black and Brown communities’ interactions with the criminal justice system. She will reallocate resources from punitive tools and processes to preventative measures and care-focused solutions that address the root causes of violence.

Through Durham for All’s Swing the State 2022 we will be working with partner organizations to go all out for the bold and exciting candidates we have endorsed or re-endorsed. In the next few months, we  will be talking with thousands of Durhamites about the issues they care most about and the importance of voting for candidates like the ones we are supporting.

Join us for a phonebank shift as we talk to Durham voters about these bold candidates. 

Endorsement Processes

Federal-level Endorsements:
U.S. House & U.S. Senate

For federal- and state-level races, Durham For All joins the endorsement process of our statewide partner, the Carolina Federation (CF). Durham For All is a local affiliate of CF, a statewide grassroots political organization that brings local people together across race and the rural-urban divide to build political and electoral power in our communities across North Carolina.

In December of 2021, CF held an online endorsement process for all active members of CF chapters and affiliate organizations, like D4A. Through that process, D4A and CF members voted to endorse Nida Allam in U.S. House for NC’s 4th Congressional District, and Cheri Beasley for U.S. Senate in North Carolina.

Local-level Endorsements:
Durham District Attorney

This year marks that first time that somebody D4A endorsed in the past is running for re-election. In 2018, D4A endorsed Satana Deberry for Durham District Attorney, and she won! D4A implemented a re-endorsement process, in which D4A staff made a recommendation to D4A members to re-endorse DA Deberry, and active members voted via e-ballot.

The Process

We repeated the voting set-up from last year, in which we had three voting bodies: 1) general members, 2) member leaders, and 3) staff and board.  Votes were tallied from each of the three bodies to determine Durham For All’s decision to re-endorse or not.

Our weighted voting model gives each voting body ⅓ of the total vote in any local race we make an endorsement. Each of these bodies determines their candidate in a race through a majority vote, and each body’s candidate will signify 1 vote for that candidate. Durham For All will endorse the candidate who receives 2 out of 3 votes from the voting bodies. If a 3-way tie occurs, rank-choice voting within each body will attempt to break the tie or no endorsement will be made.

Why Weighted Votes for Local Elections?

As our membership-based organization grows, we want all members to be able to make decisions in the organization so that they can experience greater ownership in the work, beyond paying member dues and volunteering. The weighted voting model makes this possible while also giving those who have higher levels of responsibility and commitment to the organization—such as member leaders, staff, and board—greater voting power in the endorsement process.

Take Action!

Each election cycle is a crucial opportunity to realize our vision of a North Carolina for all. Join us in our electoral organizing in 2022.

RSVP to our next community meeting