As early polling numbers start trickling in this afternoon, our Rock the Vote field teams report that young people around the country are excited to raise their voices today in the midterm elections.
In Philadelphia on the University of Pennsylvania campus this morning, 19-year-old Jill told RTV Field Director Eric Zoberman that this election is critical in the wake of 2008’s historic experience.
“It was great to see so many young people involved in 2008, but without that level of enthusiasm, it is even more my responsibility to stay engaged and vote,” she said.
It’s still early in the day, but we are optimistic that many of the 300,000 people who downloaded our registration forms this year will hit the polls. In the last midterm election in 2006, we registered 50,000 people, so we’re excited to see the outcome of that increase in participation as the results are announced.
Some cool things are already in motion this Election Day. If you’re like us at RTV Headquarters, we’re all enjoying watching our friends announce that they’ve voted and contribute to the massive tally on Facebook, which is increasing by the minute (It’s at more than 4 million voters as of 2pm EDT!). Some of us are also checking in on Foursquare, unlocking the “I Voted” badge RTV collaborated with other groups to create for today.
On the ground, young people are experiencing some early victories. RTV North Carolina State Coordinator Tracy Leatherberry reports that in many precincts, we’ve already surpassed our 2006 midterm turnout. In Gainesville, FLA, Deputy Field Director Annie Lorenzana has a large crowd of young people gathered at her University of Florida polling place casting ballots. State Coordinator Rob Abraham is on the Ohio State University campus where enthusiastic students are gathered at The Union to vote.
If you’ve already voted, encourage your friends to vote too! Send them a link to our “Vote Fearlessly” video with Nick Cannon, Casey Affleck, Joaquin Phoenix, Kate Walsh and other stars.
Stay tuned this afternoon for more updates. We’ll be back with the latest news from our people on the ground, as well as analysis of the results as they are available.