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Update: Arlington Democrats to hit the road, help out in N.C.

Governorship, host of other key races will be on the line

There are 2,657 voting precincts in North Carolina. And the Arlington County Democratic Committee aims to have an impact in as many as possible.

Yes, you read that right – Arlington Democrats. From Virginia.

The Tar Heel State will be ground zero in the party’s 2024 “Beyond Arlington” initiative, which works to marshal local forces in support of more competitive areas across the commonwealth and, in this case, across the nation.

That means phone calls, texts, mailings and in-person visits to North Carolina from now until November, helping out in races for president, governor, legislature and courts.

“We need to put in all that we can,” said Kip Malinosky, a former Arlington Democratic chair who currently heads the Beyond Arlington initiative.

At the February meeting of the county’s Democratic rank-and-file, Malinosky spelled out what data suggest are the impacts of political advocates’ directly connecting with voters:

• Knock on 48 doors, pick up one vote.

• Have 36 phone conversations, pick up one vote.

• Send 71 postcards, pick up one vote.

• Send 381 texts, pick up one vote.

Taking North Carolina could potentially be a significant help to Democrats hoping to hold on to the White House. In 2020, Donald Trump defeated Joe Biden by about 75,000 votes out of 5.4 million cast.

(Trump fell just short of an outright majority, winning 49.93 percent of the vote, but still garnered all 15 electoral votes.)

The plan to target North Carolina could be changed, Malinosky said, if strategists at the national level believe resources could be better deployed in Pennsylvania. If so, Arlington Democrats may shift their attention to the Keystone State, which Biden received by an overall majority (50.01% to 48.84% for Trump) in 2020, picking up 20 electoral votes.

Most recently, the Beyond Arlington effort focused on New York’s 3rd Congressional District, where on Feb. 13 Democrat Tom Suozzi defeated Mazi Pilip to flip the seat formerly held by the expelled U.S. Rep. George Santos, a Republican.

(Pilip, though nominated by New York’s Republican and Conservative parties and holding generally GOP-leaning positions, is a registered Democrat.)