Political Researcher and Strategist , ACLU, Political Action and Advocacy Unit, Washington, DC

National Offices, Washington, DC
District of Columbia
February 28, 2017

Career Opportunity
Political Researcher and Strategist (WLOU-57 and WLOU-60)
American Civil Liberties Union
Political Action and Advocacy Unit, Washington, DC

For nearly 100 years, the ACLU has been our nation’s guardian of liberty, working in courts, legislatures, and communities to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties guaranteed by the Constitution and laws of the United States.  Whether it’s ending mass incarceration, achieving full equality for the LGBT community, establishing new privacy protections for our digital age, or preserving the right to vote or the right to have an abortion, the ACLU takes up the toughest civil liberties cases and issues to defend all people from government abuse and overreach. With more than a million members, activists, and supporters, the ACLU is a nationwide organization that fights tirelessly in all 50 states, Puerto Rico, and Washington, D.C., for the principle that every individual’s rights must be protected equally under the law, regardless of race, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, age, disability or national origin. 


Reporting to the National Political Director, the Political Researchers/Strategists will be a critical function within the National Political Advocacy department. This position will serve as a new role at the institution, and therefore, the individuals must be entrepreneurial, possess demonstrated experience in the political research field, and be able to work independently to identify projects that help drive the political conversation. The Political Researchers/Strategists will track and monitor important political updates to issues of importance to the ACLU. The ideal candidate will have experience in media monitoring and rapid response press environments, and have intimate knowledge of the political dynamics in Congress and the administration. The researcher will work collaboratively with a team of policy analysts, digital and communications staff, and others in the institution to help improve the rapid response capabilities of the ACLU. This is two-year limited duration position with possibility of extension.


Reporting directly to and working in collaboration with the National Political Director, the Political Researchers/Strategists will do the following:

  • Conduct research and produce reports compiling information from news clips, primary source documents, and public disclosures.
  • Write comprehensive, credible, and well-documented reports;
  • Write quickly and prepare short research-intensive reports to make key arguments.
  •  Conduct occasional on-location research, with corresponding willingness to travel.
  • Closely monitor and track political developments.
  •  Collaborate with colleagues in the ACLU’s legal, legislative, advocacy and communications staff, ACLU state affiliates, national coalitions, and other allies as necessary
  • Assist the communications and advocacy teams with written products, fact-checking and other research relevant requests.
  • Research, review and flag pending legislation and other relevant issues.
  •  Analyze and report on relevant statements, briefings, and publications released by the government
  • Identify topics that should be priorities for ACLU fact-finding and advocacy, design and develop related projects that advance these strategic priorities. 
  • Conduct fact-finding interviews and research on significant political issues with a focus on issues of strategic importance to the ACLU.
  • Train national and affiliate staff on conducting research, interviewing techniques, report-writing, and other related topics. 
  • Implement and utilize online and social media strategies.
  • Stay informed by reviewing political publications and other relevant sources of information.
  • Work across a multi-issue spectrum of matters that concern the ACLU.


  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Minimum 5 years’ experience in political research, writing, and/or advocacy.
  • Possess a well-developed knowledge of political law and framework, specifically as it pertains to the application within the United States and to U.S. actions abroad. 
  • Strong communications skills in order to convey complex research and analysis in a clear and concise manner.
  • Experience in media monitoring including social media, monitoring tools and analytics.
  • Must be self-motivated and possess the ability to work independently as well as within a team.
  • Excellent analytical, writing and organizational skills.
  • Ability to provide geopolitical expertise and ability to conduct strategic/political studies and assessments for the application of strategies and tactics. 
  • Willingness and availability to travel is required.
  • Advanced-level proficiency and previous experience in a variety of computer software applications and research databases (i.e. Lexis-Nexis or Westlaw).


Please send a cover letter with salary requirements and resume to hrjobsWLO@aclu.org -Reference [WLOU-57/60] in the subject line.

Please indicate where you learned of this career opportunity.

Applications will be accepted until the position is filled.


This job description provides a general but not comprehensive list of the essential responsibilities and qualifications required.  It does not represent a contract of employment.  The ACLU reserves the right to change the description and/or posting at any time without advance notice.

The ACLU is an equal opportunity employer. We value a diverse workforce and an inclusive culture. The ACLU encourages applications from all qualified individuals without regard to race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, age, national origin, marital status, citizenship, disability, veteran status and record of arrest or conviction.

The ACLU undertakes affirmative action strategies in its recruitment and employment efforts to assure that persons with disabilities have full opportunities for employment in all positions.

We encourage applicants with disabilities who may need accommodations in the application process to contact:hrjobsincl@aclu.org. Correspondence sent to this email address that is not related to requests for accommodations will not be reviewed. Applicants should follow the instructions above regarding how to apply.

The ACLU comprises two separate corporate entities, the American Civil Liberties Union and the ACLU Foundation. Both the American Civil Liberties Union and the ACLU Foundation are national organizations with the same overall mission, and share office space and employees. The ACLU has two separate corporate entities in order to do a broad range of work to protect civil liberties. This job posting refers collectively to the two organizations under the name “ACLU.” 

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