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Photo of Anton Andrew

Anton Andrew

PA HD-160, Delaware and Chester Counties

  • Opponent: Wendell Craig Williams
  • General Election: November 3rd, 2020
  • Result: Andrew 49.23%, Williams 50.77%

Former public defender and environmental champion Andrew resumed the fight he started in 2018, with a strengthened organization and no longer facing an incumbent opponent. Democrats have a growing partisan advantage in this key open seat (which overlaps with John Kane's state senate district) astride Delco and Chesco, where Better Prosecutors returned after securing key DA wins in both counties in 2019. Nevertheless, Andrew came up just short by under 1000 votes.

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Joanna Bryn Smith

PA HD-120, Luzerne County

  • Opponent: Aaron Kaufer
  • General Election: November 3rd, 2020
  • Result: Smith 36.87%, Kaufer 63.13%

Public defender and public school educator Joanna Bryn Smith ran to represent her hometown and other Susquehanna riverfront municipalities in the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre metropolitan area, Joe Biden's childhood home. Her opponent was an eight-year incumbent with few legislative achievements to his name. Although it has many registered Democrats, this area of NEPA mostly voted Republican in 2020.

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Nancy Guenst

PA HD-152, Montgomery County

  • Opponent: Karen Houck
  • General Election: November 3rd, 2020
  • Result: Guenst 50.9%, Houck 42.2%

Veteran and Hatboro Mayor Guenst has shown a consistent ability to take on Republicans and win, speaking cogently about the issues across divergent communities. A bright spot and a pickup amid a stormy 2020 cycle for local challengers, Guenst seized this open seat by a 3400-vote margin.

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Lauren Lareau

PA HD-142, Bucks County

  • Opponent: Frank Farry
  • General Election: November 3rd, 2020
  • Result: Lareau 38.8%, Farry 61.2%

Single mother, small-business owner and educator Lareau challenged long-time incumbent Frank Farry with a social justice-centered, pro-immigrant campaign in this suburban seat. She was unable to overcome the political headwinds in a cycle that saw downballot Bucks Democratic challengers run substantially behind the Presidential split.

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Lissa Geiger Shulman

PA HD-30, Allegheny County

  • Opponent: Lori Mizgorski
  • General Election: November 3rd, 2020
  • Result: Geiger Shulman 43.9%, Mizgorski 56.1%

Geiger Shulman is a mother and educator who ran to represent many of Pittsburgh's northern suburbs. Her right-wing opponent, first-termer Lori Mizgorski, defeated Lissa's fairly textbook campaign in a very high-turnout race in this gerrymandered district.

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Tina Davis

PA HD-141, Bucks County

  • Opponent: Kelly Bellerby-Allen
  • General Election: November 3rd, 2020
  • Result: Davis 61.2%, Bellerby-Allen 38.8%

For a decade, Davis has been a progressive force for the working class in Bucks, while helping build the opportunity pipeline for women candidates through the Emerge organization; we endorsed her successful reelection as part of a long-term commitment to turning Bucks blue.

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Mike Doyle

PA HD-170, Philadelphia

  • Opponent: Martina White
  • General Election: November 3rd, 2020
  • Result: Doyle 39.4%, White 60.6%

Progressive advocate Doyle pursued a determined rematch against xenophobic police secrecy apologist and well-known incumbent Martina White, the only Republican left in Philadelphia. In a bareknuckle Northeast Philly district with a tradition of ticket-splitting, Doyle's early mail-in ballot advantage was soundly squashed on an Election Day that included incidents such as broad distribution of deliberately misleading endorser sample ballots, as well as multiple physical altercations at poll sites.

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John Kane

PA SD-9

  • Opponent: Thomas Killion
  • General Election: November 3rd, 2020
  • Result: Kane 51.94%, Killion 48.06%

Union plumber and recent cancer survivor Kane ran a highly credible campaign that centered a commitment to justice, in the bluest PA state senate district still occupied by Republican Tom Killion, who held on in 2016 by less than 3 points. Just like in 2019, Chester and Delaware counties delivered another Better Prosecutors victory in 2020.

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Patrick Nelson

NY SD-43

  • Opponent: Daphne Jordan
  • General Election: November 3rd, 2020
  • Result: Nelson 47.3%, Jordan 52.6%

A scientist, community organizer, startup business founder and musician, Nelson has advanced good governance, healthcare access and Covid safety efforts in his community. Opponent Daphne Jordan fought to insulate cops from scrutiny and to punish immigrants and low-income families in this district which stretches up and down the east bank of the Hudson River, from Saratoga Springs down to Columbia County. As with many 2020 downballot challengers this cycle, Nelson's grassroots effort fell just short and could not overcome exceptionally high Republican turnout.

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Photo of Meagan Galligan

Meagan Galligan

DA, Sullivan County, NY

  • Opponent: Frank LaBuda
  • General Election: November 3rd, 2020
  • Result: Galligan 56.87%, LaBuda 43.04%

Acting DA and County Bar President Galligan aimed to secure a full term in an office where she has served as ADA for a decade, advocating for special victims support, accountability and deepened community ties along the way. We're glad she defeated punitive former judge Frank LaBuda.

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Photo of Jabari Brisport

Jabari Brisport (D, WFP)

NY Senate 25th District, Central Brooklyn

  • Opponents:
    • Jason Salmon
    • Tremaine Wright
  • Population: 257,080 registered voters
  • Primary Election: June 23, 2020
  • Result: Brisport 57.56%, Wright 34.49%, Salmon: 7.36%

Better Prosecutors identified early the potential for Brisport, a queer Black educator and community leader, to capture activist imaginations with his nontraditional campaign style, full-throated support for the DSA platform, and strong field mobilization to reach diverse constituencies across a district that stretches across varied Central Brooklyn neighborhoods. His historic outsider campaign was successful, ultimately dominating the race to replace retiring 35-year incumbent Velmanette Montgomery and bringing new leadership to the legislative fight for justice.

Jabari Brisport earned our endorsement, donation, and a microtargeted, innovative digital ad strategy that focused on multiple age and geographic cohorts across 60% of the district and a joint “carousel” ad that linked his insurgent campaign to Sen. Salazar’s reelection effort across their shared district border.


Photo of Matt Toporowski

Matt Toporowski (D, WFP)

District Attorney, Albany County

  • Opponent: David Soares
    • Incumbent, elected 2004
  • Population: 209,364 registered voters
  • Primary Election: June 23, 2020
  • Result: Soares 55.57%, Toporowski 42.26%

Former Assistant DA Toporowski’s campaign tried to coalesce growing dissatisfaction with incumbent DA Soares' unwillingness to lead on criminal justice and police accountability issues. The incumbent was elected in 2004 on a reform platform opposing the Rockefeller Drug Laws, but failed to go much further since. One issue dividing the candidates was 50a, the recently-repealed state law shielding police from scrutiny of misconduct — Soares suggested it didn't need repeal, while Toporowski advocated for transparency before the recent George Floyd protests galvanized action in the legislature. Better Prosecutors supported Toporowski with a donation, a mailer, and five different digital ads delivered to different segments of the county. Although Toporowski lost, we were able to quantify and in effect prove our positive impact on election results, as detailed in our report.


Photo of Julia Salazar

Julia Salazar (D, WFP)

NY Senate 18th District, North Brooklyn

  • Opponent: Andy Marte
  • Population: 216,940 registered voters
  • Primary Election: June 23, 2020
  • Result: Salazar 86.61%, Marte 13.10%

The freshman state senator, the youngest and most left-wing senator in Albany, had a productive first term with legislative victories mostly on housing and women’s health. Before her election, Julia was an organizer for Jews for Racial and Economic Justice, and radically transforming our criminal justice system is a major focus of hers. Julia’s opponent was Andy Marte, the disciple of disgraced ex-Brooklyn Boss Vito Lopez. Since Vito’s death, Andy became both a MAGA supporter and an anti-vaxxer. Better Prosecutors invested modestly to support a well-positioned legislative ally whose district overlapped or was adjacent to other key races this cycle. That small effort was rewarded with what will likely be our most lopsided victory for years to come.


Photo of Samy Nemir Olivares

Samy Nemir Olivares (D)

Democratic State Committeeman, 51st Assembly District, North Brooklyn

  • Opponent: Tommy Torres
  • Population: about 130,000, but substantially fewer registered Democrats
  • Primary Election: June 23, 2020
  • Result: Olivares 71.14%, Torres 28.15%

Olivares is a Puerto Rican-Dominican, queer, progressive activist and filmmaker running in a district almost entirely contained within Julia Salazar's state senate district. Challengers have typically fared poorly against incumbents put up by the Brooklyn Machine in hyperlocal, low-turnout races, but Better Prosecutors identified that Samy could beat the odds and helped supplement his get out the vote efforts, providing a donation, key field support and a steady stream of volunteers leading up to election day.

Samy centered racial and criminal justice reform, "including divesting from police, criminalization, and incarceration!" His campaign is an excellent example of how Better Prosecutors makes the biggest difference working at the lowest levels of politics.


Photo of Rick Krajewski

Rick Krajewski (D)

PA Assembly 188th District, West Philadelphia

  • Opponents: Opponents: James Roebuck (incumbent), Greg Benjamin, Anita Dunn
  • Population: 51,452 eligible voters
  • Primary Election: June 2, 2020
  • Result: Krajewski 46.50%, Roebuck 27.04%, Benjamin 13.38%, Dunn 13.08%

Community organizer, anticarceral activist, and co-founder of Reclaim Philly Rick Krajewski won an extraordinarily substantial margin in an underdog victory to unseat 35-year incumbent Jim Roebuck in a hard-fought and fluid four-way primary. Both Better Prosecutors directors donated directly to Rick's campaign, and we made hundreds of calls for him. A strong absentee operation, high intensity of support and those phone-banking operations were factors that helped put this compelling changemaker over the top.


Photo of Jack Stollsteimer

Jack Stollsteimer (D)

  • Opponent: Katayoun Copeland (R)
    • Appointed to fill vacancy, in office since early 2018
  • Delaware County, PA
  • Population: 564,751
  • 2016 President results: Clinton 59%, Trump 37%
  • 2018 Congress results: Democrat 65%, Republican 35%
  • Election: November 5, 2019
  • Result: Stollsteimer 51.47%, Copeland 48.53%

Former Assistant District Attorney Stollsteimer emphasized reform and a halt to abuses at the privatized George W. Hill Correctional Facility in this relatively liberal suburban and urban district outside Philadelphia. Incumbent Copeland was appointed to her position to fill outgoing conservative hard-liner Bill Whelan's term after he was appointed to a judgeship, but had never before run for office. Stollsteimer was much more aligned with the ideology of voters in the district. Not only did Better Prosecutors win our flagship race of 2019, but we also helped flip the County Council Democratic for the first time since the Civil War, and elect a few down-ballot Democrats in Eddystone and Alden boroughs, where Democrats had never won before. Our spot against Copeland and for Stollsteimer was substantive and hard-hitting in this fiercely-contested election where every vote mattered.

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Photo of Deb Ryan

Deb Ryan (D)

  • Opponent: Michael Noone (R)
  • Chester County, PA
  • Population: 522,046
  • 2016 President results: Clinton 53%, Trump 43%
  • 2018 Congress results: Democrat 56%, Republican 41%
  • Election: November 5, 2019
  • Result: Ryan 54%, Noone 45%

Fifteen year veteran ADA and child welfare advocate Deb Ryan had an unusual opportunity to beat her late-entrant opponent thanks to the unexpected withdrawal of established incumbent Tom Hogan. The Chester County GOP had been handed a string of recent defeats and was in disarray, so we knew there was space for a more moderate candidate to continue the pivot in this suburban swing district which in 2018 saw an impressive 20% increase in turnout. In the end, Ryan beat Noone by a substantial 9 point margin, supported by targeted supplemental field activities from Better Prosecutors.


Photo of Richard Berube

Richard Berube (D)

  • Opponent: William Grady (R)
    • Incumbent district attorney since 1983, hasn't faced a major opponent since 1995
  • Dutchess County, NY
  • Population: 297,488
  • 2016 President results: Clinton 50.2%, Trump 49.8%
  • 2018 Congress results: Democrats 55.7%, Republicans 44.3%
  • Election: November 5, 2019
  • Result: Grady 50.60%, Berube 49.38%

Beacon resident, former ADA and Marine Richard Berube had a chance to knock off NY state's longest-serving prosecutor, one of only two remaining district attorneys in the state to have sought the death penalty (in 1998 and 2000). Dutchess County, home to FDR as well as the last Republican to run against Andrew Cuomo, is a classic swing county these days. He came up just short, leading the Democratic slate in votes, in Better Prosecutors' second agonizingly close result of 2019.


Photo of Tiffany Cabán

Tiffany Cabán (D)

  • Queens County, NY
  • Election: June 25, 2019
  • Result: Katz 38.57%, Cabán 38.50%, Lasak 14.41%

Cabán ran an exhilarating underdog primary campaign for DA in Queens, NY, where an Election Night lead gave way to a heartachingly close loss by 55 votes in recounts later that summer. We were able to spend substantial resources to run cable and print ads and have a presence that differed tactically from the campaign, identifying key trends that might otherwise have been missed. Our TV spot, "Anyone Else", was lauded for its playfulness and unconventional approach.

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