Letter to the editor: Why you should vote

Submission by Juliet Etke, NextGen America

On Election Day, young voters are going to turn out in record numbers. Why? Because if the Republican allies of Donald Trump remain in power, we are the ones who will bear the brunt of their destructive policy agenda, including irreversible damage to the environment, failure to offer immigrants a path to citizenship, and the dismantling of high quality health care programs. This November, we must take action at the ballot box.

On Tuesday, September 25, I worked with NextGen Florida to continue building this momentum. To celebrate National Voter Registration Day, NextGen Florida spread out across 13 campuses in Tampa and St Petersburg, engaging and registering young Floridians to vote. We were here at University of Tampa, and I’m excited to say that we’ll be here every day until the voter registration deadline, October 9th. From 11am to 2pm Monday through Friday, we will have a table in Vaughn lobby so that we can register students to vote and talk to them about what issues they’re excited to vote on. I just graduated in May, and it feels good to be back on campus registering voters. But to make a big impact, I need you to spread the word. I need you to encourage your friends to register and turn out to vote.

In close elections, a single vote can be the crucial difference that propels a progressive candidate to victory. The organizers I work with are hardworking, show incredible perseverance, and are determined to mobilize their peers to be that difference. On National Voter Registration Day, we registered 1,200 young people across the state to vote. In total, we’ve now registered over 41,000 voters so far, and we’re going full steam ahead through the midterms. On November 6, young Americans can’t sit home and wait on a Blue Wave — we have to get out and make it happen.

Our futures depend on it.


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