Vice President Harris announces $25 million for DNC voter registration efforts ahead of midterms – CNBC

US Vice President Kamala Harris speaks on voting rights at the Louis Stokes Library of Howard University in Washington, DC on July 8, 2021.

Mandel Ngan | AFP | Getty Images

Vice President Kamala Harris announced a new $25 million investment by the Democratic National Committee to expand its program that will help get out the vote in the upcoming midterm elections.

The announcement, which took place on Thursday, comes as Harris and her team have been under scrutiny by allies and some of her own aides. Much of the frustration has been directed at Harris’ chief of staff, Tina Flournoy. It also comes as Republicans draft and pass state laws that critics say restrict access to the ballot box.

Details of the DNC’s updated “I Will Vote'” program, shared early with CNBC, suggests that the committee is trying to boost voter engagement going into the 2022 midterms and the 2024 presidential election. The announcement highlights Harris’ focus on voting rights as vice president, including meetings with members of Congress and advocates such as Stacey Abrams and Derrick Johnson, the CEO of the NAACP.

Democratic National Committee Chairman, Jaime Harrison speaks on voting rights at the Louis Stokes Library of Howard University in Washington, DC on July 8, 2021.

Mandel Ngan | AFP | Getty Images

DNC Chair Jaime Harrison touted the new resources in a statement. Harrison had previously announced a separate $20 million investment by the DNC into the same voting program.

“I’ve said time and again that the ‘D’ in Democrat stands for deliver, and today we are delivering innovative and historic resources to protect this fundamental part of our democracy,” Harrison said.

The $25 million will partially go toward a new digital and TV ad campaign that the DNC says will focus, in part, on how to register to vote. The DNC says it will be partnering with social media creators across Facebook, Instagram and TikTok to highlight what President Joe Biden and Democrats have achieved so far.

The new funding will also help finance a tech component of the DNC’s voter registration efforts.

“The Biden-Harris team will fund the largest tech team in the history of the DNC,” the announcement says. “The team will use data and other tools to identify and contact voters affected by efforts at suppression and voter roll purges, to ensure that all eligible voters have the information they need to cast a ballot. These investments will make sure that staff across the country have easy to use and actionable reporting on voters who have been moved to inactive lists or removed from voter rolls.”

The DNC did not say who will be on its upcoming tech team but Silicon Valley executive Reid Hoffman did host a virtual big money fundraising event for the committee featuring Biden himself.

“You know, anybody who contributed and raised as much funds as you did, everybody expects to be knocking on my door for — you never asked me for a single thing. You’ve raised an enormous amount of money, and you said, ‘The reason why we haven’t gotten together, Mr. President, is because we didn’t want to distract you.  We want you to keep going,'” Biden said at the Hoffman-led fundraising event last month.

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