Cliff Maloney cut his political teeth working on Sen. Rand Paul’s presidential campaign. In 2016, he was the Kentucky senator’s national youth director.

Now, he’s the CEO of Citizens Alliance Pennsylvania (CAP) and running The Pennsylvania Chase. He hopes to have about 100 paid volunteers knock on 500,000 doors this fall to motivate Republican voters who haven’t been motivated to vote to send in their ballots.

Maloney, 32, said it’s something the Democrats have been doing since the state voting rules changed prior to the COVID pandemic to allow no-excuse mail-in ballots.

“Democrats have adapted, and Republicans have been asleep at the wheel,” said Maloney.

The Delaware County native and 2009 Chichester High School graduate said the fall election in Pennsylvania is going to be close. He believes “chasing” ballots could put the state into the Republican column for former President Donald Trump and all down-ballot GOP candidates.

His organization has had some success backing “fiscal conservative” candidates, such as Sen. Jarrett Coleman, a Republican who now represents parts of Bucks and Lehigh Counties. Coleman was elected in 2022 after defeating incumbent Pat Browne by 24 votes in the primary election, then beating Democrat Mark Pinsley in the general election. Pinsley is now running for auditor general. Also, in 2022 CAP backed Rep. Wendy Fink (R-York), who defeated Republican incumbent Stan Saylor in the primary.

“We really just help those candidates who are going to be free market when it comes to economics,” said Maloney.

Because Democrats were so effective with mail-in votes in 2023, “it was a bloodbath,” said Maloney. “And so, we said, ‘You know what? We’ve got to take action here.”

“One of our key things we do at Citizens Alliance is knock doors,” said Maloney. So, we already had the apparatus set up. And now we’re partnering with Turning Point.” That group is “making us the official state ballot chasing group. And so we’re out there raising money. We’re taking applications, and we’re putting all the logistics together with measurable metrics. We want to knock 500,000 doors. We’re going to hire 100 paid ballot chasers.”

This is something the Democrats have already been doing, he said.

As far as Republican reluctance to use mail-in ballots, Maloney said, “We have two options. We can adapt to the current rules or two, we can continue to lose. “

And the voters they are “chasing” are not the reliable Republican voters who vote in each election. These are the 1 million registered Republicans who don’t vote in every election. These are people who did not vote in the last four elections or voted in one of the previous four elections, he said.

“I’m trying to target the disengaged, low-propensity Republican voters,” said Maloney. “You get them a ballot in their mailbox, and they are exponentially more likely to vote.” The ballot chasers will also remind these people.

“It’s a numbers game,” said Maloney, a former math teacher. Right now, Republicans make up 20 percent of the mail-in ballots. If they can increase that to 33 percent, “we’re extremely competitive.”

Guy Ciarrocchi, who ran for Congress in Chester County and is now a senior fellow with the Commonwealth Foundation, said, “The most important and effective tool that Republicans can use is to vote by mail and encourage every supporter, too. It’s the one thing that is totally in our control and can’t be impacted by anyone opposing us. It’s simple—if Republicans do it well, we win. Dave McCormick goes to the Senate—and Biden can go eat all the ice cream he wants in retirement.”

“And door-knocking has always been my thing,” said Maloney. “Through all our programs, we’ve knocked on about 6 million doors. We’ve won over 300 legislative races. My focus is on legislative wins to make the states more conservative.”

When Maloney grew up in Delaware County, all the elected officials were Republican. Now, the opposite is the case, except for Rep. Craig Williams (R-Chadds Ford). “I saw this happen in Delco. It turned blue very quickly.”

As for the 2024 presidential race, Maloney thinks Robert Kennedy Jr. will hurt President Joe Biden’s chances in Pennsylvania.

“My whole family are union, blue-collar Democrats,” said Maloney. “Some of them switched over. But I think RFK, the Kennedy name, represents a real opportunity for a lot of Biden supporters to have an alternative.”

The Kennedy name resonates with “old-school Democrats.”

Maloney currently lives in Missouri because his wife, Grace, is an active-duty Air Force captain, but he frequently returns to Pennsylvania.

“For the general election, we need all hands on deck,” said Maloney.


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