Re-posted from WeArePowerShift.org
This blog was co-authored by Anastasia Schemkes, Campaign Rep & Sasha Shyduroff, Organizing Manager of the Sierra Student Coalition.
One of the biggest regrets I have is not voting in my first presidential election, the 2008 election.
At the time it was one more thing to think about while planning to live abroad. As the election drew near, I could feel the buzz of it in France and within the community of American students I studied with. On election night, every American student I knew in my town stayed up all night as the results came in, myself included. But I didn’t know that every time after that the ’08 election is mentioned, that sinking feeling in my gut would reappear as my friends recount their experiences.
I wish one of my peers had told me “your vote is important, here’s how to make sure your vote counts.”
This year is different. I have spent every day of the last few months talking with every young person I know and meet about their right to vote and how to utilize it.
Tonight, just like waiting to open presents on Christmas morning, I am eagerly awaiting going to my polling location tomorrow. Tomorrow will be my first time voting in a presidential election. After, I will wear my “I Voted” sticker proudly and then I will go to the phones, again. And I will talk to my friends, again. And I will go on facebook, again.
Your vote is important. Now get out there and vote!
Here are some tips to make the most out of Election Day:
1. People are excited to vote this year so head to the polls early! Seriously, go when they first open especially if you’re on a college campus, how many of your friends will be up at 7am? More importantly, have your vote plan ready- When are you going? Where is your polling location? How are you getting there? Are there others you can bring with you?
2. Don’t know your polling location? TEXT “Polling” to 69866 and you’ll get an auto-reply asking you to enter your address. For Spanish speakers use: “Donde” to 87787.
3. Voter disenfranchisement and voter intimidation is REAL and serious!! If you or anyone thinks they are being wrongly turned away from the poll or being asked to vote a provisional ballot at their polling location you need to call a lawyer, or something just seems wrong call:
1 866-OUR-VOTE this connects you to the hotline with Election Protection.
Election Protection site: http://www.866ourvote.org/
3. Another good resource: http://fairelectionsnetwork.com/
http://fairelectionsnetwork.com/resources/student-voting this site has state specific voting guides on what people need to vote).
Now it’s your turn: share what you will be doing tomorrow to turn out and protect the vote!