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Final Ohio Youth Vote Push Hits Campuses

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March 2nd 2008

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Contacts:

Ohio State University - Kathleen Cogan 281 615 2495 (c)

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Miami University - Erik Smith 740 297 0088 (c)

University of Cincinnati - Sheena Rice 406 690 9777 (c)

Program Director - Sujatha Jahagirdar 323 309 6120 (c)

Youth Organizers storm Ohio campuses in last push for youth vote

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Dorm Storms, ‘Get out the Vote’ Concerts, ‘Text out the Vote Class Announcements Target Young Voters

Since 2004 Ohio PIRG’s New Voters Project has used tested methods at an unprecedented scale and rigor to register more than 8,000 18-30 year olds to vote and made thousands more Get out the Vote (GOTV) contacts via phone or face to face to encourage young people to vote. Our efforts have spanned the state, working with students at Capital University, Case Western Reserve University, Kent State University, Ohio State University, the University of Cincinnati, Miami University, Oberlin University and the University of Toledo. The non-partisan project has been endorsed state legislators, local businesses and campus administrators.

In part due to our efforts, youth voting rates in the state have increased significantly. According to CIRCLE, in 2004 Ohio’s youth vote increased by 14 percent over 2000. An analysis of turnout figures in 14 student-dominated Ohio precincts targeted by Ohio PIRG in 2006 found that the overall number of votes cast in those precincts increased by about 50 percent over 2002. Leading up to Tuesday’s primary and on Election Day, on-the-ground organizers with Ohio PIRG will work in student-dominated precincts to make sure that student voters are fully informed about their voting rights and are afforded full access to the polls guaranteed by the law.

Ohio Youth Vote Student Leader Profiles

Jerry Tsai, 23 – A senior Political Science student at the University of Cincinnati, Tsai hails from Marysville, Ohio. Last year’s campus Student Body President, he is currently the chair of the Ohio Student Government Association. After graduation he plans to teach in the Las Vegas Valley for Teach for America.

Elizabeth Morgan, 21 – President of the University of Cincinnati Political Science Student and representative for the Ohio Student Public Interest Research Group, Elizabeth is working to mobilize young people on her campus to make their voices heard on Election Day.

Brad Stephens, 21 – An at-large Student Senator at the University of Cincinnati, Stephens is the chairman of the Government Affairs Committee as well as the Outward Support Executive for the Ohio Student Government Association.

Schedule of Primary Week Youth Vote Mobilization Events

Sunday, March 2nd

‘Get out the Vote Concert’

6:30 pm – 8:30 pm

Millet Hall

Miami University

Oxford, OH

Student leaders from the Campus Activities Council and BandFusion will ask their peers to ‘Get out the Vote’ at a campus ‘311’ concert and sign a pledge to vote in Tuesday’s primary.

‘Get out the Youth Vote’

Bring Your Own Phone Phone-Bank

3 pm – 6 pm

Ohio PIRG State Office

203 E. Broad Street, Suite 3
Columbus, Ohio 43215

Youth organizers and student volunteers in bright red ‘I Vote’ t-shirts will feverishly phone-bank young voters throughout the state to urge them to turn out to the polls on Tuesday. Re-contacting young voters can significantly boost turnout rates – A study of youth voter mobilization work conducted by the Student PIRG New Voters Project in 2004 election, for example, found that young voters both registered and contacted by the Student PIRGs’ New Voters Project turned out at a rate of 86.3%. People who were registered (but not contacted) by the Student PIRGs’ New Voters Project turned out at a rate of 77.0%.

Bearcats Pledge to Vote

11 am – 1 pm

University of Cincinnati

Fifth Third Arena

Local student volunteers will encourage students to pledge to vote in Tuesday’s primary while cheering the Bearcats as they take on Providence.

Monday, March 3rd

Campus Coffee Shop Clipboarding

10 am – 12 pm

15th St and High St.

Ohio State University

Columbus, Ohio

In a last-minute effort to urge as many young voters to the polls as possible, Ohio PIRG student volunteers at Ohio State University in bright red ‘I Vote’ t-shirts will invade campus coffee shops to urge young voters to sign ‘Pledge to Vote’ cards and show up at the polls on Election Day.

What’s Your Plan? Photo Shoot

University of Cincinnati

University of Cincinnati students will take their pictures with life-sized cutouts of the presidential candidates to ask them What’s Your Plan? To make a college affordable. To stop global warming. To provide affordable, effective healthcare. To address financial security for all Americans. The event is the latest for Ohio PIRG’s What’s Your Plan? Campaign that has the candidates their plans to address youth issues more than 100 times across the country.

‘Get out the Youth Vote’ Bring Your Own Phone Phone-Bank

6 pm – 9 pm

University of Cincinnati

Tangeman University Center

7 pm – 10 pm

Paige Hall

Ohio State University

Columbus, Ohio

‘Get out the Vote’ Dorm Storm

Miami University

8 pm – 9 pm

Students will seek students in their dorms in a final push to remind students to ‘Get Out to Vote’ in Tuesday’s primary.

Tuesday, March 4th

Classroom ‘Text out the Vote’ Announcements

Times TBA

Ohio State University

University of Cincinnati

Youth organizers and student volunteers will make ‘Text out the Vote’ announcements in Ohio State University and the University of Cincinnati classrooms in a final push to turnout the local youth vote. As part of the effort, students in classrooms will be urged to put down their pens, pick up their clipboards and text all their friends in their phone books to get out to vote. Texting can boost youth voter turnout rates - A study published jointly by the Student PIRGs’ New Voters Project, Working Assets and researchers at Princeton University in September found that text-message reminders to young voters the day before the election can boost youth voter turnout rates by 4 percent. On the eve of Super Tuesday, the Student PIRGs joined the One Campaign and Credo Mobile to text 20,000 young voters ‘get out the vote’ reminders.

Campus Coffee Shop Clipboarding

9 am – 11 pm

15th St and High St.

Ohio State University

Columbus, Ohio

Campus ‘Pledge to Vote’ Tabling Event

12 pm – 2 pm

University of Miami

Students volunteers clad in bright red ‘I Vote’ t-shirts on main campus thoroughfares will stop their peers on campus to urge them to the polls on Election Day.

###

Ohio PIRG is a student organization that works to solve public interest problems related to the environment, consumer protection, and government reform. http://www.ohiopirgstudents.org/. Since 2004, we have registered more than 8,000 young Ohioans to vote. An analysis of turnout figures in 14 student-dominated Ohio precincts targeted by Ohio PIRG in 2006 found that the overall number of votes cast in those precincts increased by about 50 percent over 2002.

Sujatha Jahagirdar

Program Director

Student PIRGs' New Voters Project

3435 Wilshire Blvd, Ste 385

Los Angeles, CA 90010

t 213 251 3680 ext. 321

f 213 251 3699

e sujatha@studentpirgs.org

 

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