The original Deadline to register to vote in Arizona’s General Election was October 5, 2020. then it was extended to October 23, 2020, and now October 15, 2020, is the last day to register to vote. Since the extension, The Arizona Students’ Association (ASA) has Registered 148 students and counting across the state of Arizona.
The deadline was originally extended due to the pandemic and the effects it had on different organizations like ASA and volunteers who helped people register to vote.
The Arizona Students’ Association fellows, staff, and volunteers have been working hard this year getting students registered to vote. ASA is a statewide organization with a fellowship program of over 35 students at all 3 in-state universities; Arizona State University, University of Arizona, and Northern Arizona University.
Before the pandemic, ASA registered voters in person by Clipboarding on campus, tabling, in-person, class raps, and knocking on college apartments and dorms.
Since the Pandemic, ASA had to change strategies and shifted to registering students to vote online. ASA dropped off flyers at college apartments, hoping that students would be able to walk themselves through the voter registration process. ASA also jumped on college zoom classes and sent out links to register to vote, as well as texted students links to update and register their voter registration. We also had multiple digital ads running on social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Tik Tok, Snapchat, and Hulu.
Kyle Nitschke the organizing Director for ASA Said,
“95% of our voter registration has moved online post-pandemic. All of our Class RAPs are virtual, and we don't bring paper forms door-to-door to prevent spread. We occasionally table, but at a much lower frequency because of COVID and because of how much quieter the campus is.
The extension has definitely given us more time to help get even more students to register to vote because that’s the mission that we have right now. We want to increase the young vote compared to past elections where young voices seem to disappear. There is so much at stake in this year’s election and as students and the young generation, we can’t afford to not vote.
Although it’s not the same, we have seen good results from the class raps, digital advertising, and text banking strategies we have been pushing before and after the extension.
“There have already been thousands of registrations since the extension. We should take the next step and push our legislators to pass a bill enabling same-day voter registration in AZ.”
We are seeing the impact of this extension here in Arizona and we have been given the opportunity to turn the next four years into years that will make everyone’s lives better. With this extension, we are giving a voice to those whose voices don’t get heard all the time. Today is the last to register to vote and remember let’s not only vote for things we care about but also for those whom we care about. You can register at Azstudents.org.
After the extension and experience of ASA’s increase in voter registration, the Executive Director Cesar Aguilar said,
“We must push for automatic voter registration, Election Day voter registration, any policy that makes it easier to be able to vote.” US citizens turn out to vote for millions of different reasons and by missing deadlines, citizens could be stripped of that right to vote. Students juggle so much by working, attending classes, doing homework, getting involved, and voting sometimes becomes the least important thing in college students’ life. That last-minute extension as we have seen allowed 148 students in Arizona the right to voice their opinion this election.”
-Anna Deogratias, ASA Communication Fellow
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