One key to running a successful political campaign is voter registration. Campaign staff on both sides of the aisle run voter registration drives at all sorts of real-world events — county fairs, baseball games and town festivals, just to name a few.
The more citizens a campaign can sign up to vote, the logic goes, the bigger the pool of potential voters for that campaign’s candidate.
Now, President Obama’s re-election campaign is looking to bring information about voter registration online via a new portal called “GottaVote,” billed as a one-stop shop for everything visitors need to know in preparation for Election Day.
Upon arrival, the site automatically detects the U.S. state where a visitor lives, as voter registration laws can differ widely between states. GottaVote then provides four options: “get registered,” “what to bring,” “get reminders” and “vote.”
Users can explore the site to find voter registration forms and instructions on filling them out, browse information about what they’ll need to bring to a polling place on Election Day and learn how to find the location of their local polling place. Online-only voting is not yet possible in the United States, so the best that GottaVote can do is help users print out a voter registration form and give them an address for mailing it to the proper local office.
“Voting should be easy for every eligible voter. Simply put, that’s why today we’re launching GottaVote.org,” reads a blog post on the site. “When you have the information you need, no matter where you live, you can take the steps to make sure your vote is counted and your voice is heard come election day.”
GottaVote users can also ask the Obama campaign their voting-related questions or submit a story about voting, giving the site an element of social interaction.
The platform comes in a Spanish-language version as well — likely an acknowledgement of the importance of the Spanish-speaking community in this year’s presidential election.
Many states have strict regulations around voter registration. Campaign staff aren’t allowed, for example, to ask a potential registrant about their political ideology before signing them up to vote. However, GottaVote is not without its partisan calls to action.
A “Take Action” page encourages visitors to attend a voter registration “weekend of action,” a favorite event of the Obama campaign wherein thousands of voter registration drives are held simultaneously across the country. The site also asks lawyers to join the “victory council,” an all-volunteer legal team designed to “ensure that every eligible voter can vote on Election Day,” the site says.
Obama campaign staff have derided some states’ efforts to create voter identification laws, which they say are an attempt to disenfranchise Democratic blocs of voters — and GottaVote is likely a response to those laws. Proponents of tighter voter identification rules argue that they’re needed to prevent voter fraud.
Do you think more Americans would register to vote if they could do it all online? Sound off in the comments below.
via Mashable! http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/Mashable/~3/g5BU1KZruSQ/