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Today is National Voter Registration Day

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Sept. 27 is National Voter Registration Day, an unofficial national holiday on which thousands of community groups and volunteers register people to vote.

Started in 2012 for the presidential election, National Voter Registration Day is designed to create an annual day when the entire nation focuses on registering citizens to exercise their most basic right – the right to vote.

To register to vote, go to the website of the U.S. League of Women Voters, www.VOTE411.org, to find information on the procedures in your state.

“We want Americans to know that in this monumental election year, their voice is needed – but voter registration deadlines are looming and now is the time to get ready,” said Wylecia Wiggs Harris, CEO of the national league.

“With so much at stake for all Americans this election year, I want to ask everyone to talk with your family, friends, neighbors and coworkers about voter registration,” Harris said. “On Election Day, we are all equal, but only if we vote.”

In a presidential proclamation, President Barack Obama said:

One of the most fundamental and sacred rights of any democracy is the right to vote; in order for our government to function effectively and respond to the needs of our people, all citizens can and must play a role in shaping it. Each year on National Voter Registration Day, we reaffirm the strong sense of civic pride among our people and encourage friends, family members, and neighbors to get involved in civic life by registering to vote.

Democracy is not a spectator sport. If we are serious about improving our country and ensuring our government reflects our values, we cannot afford to sit out on Election Day. Unfortunately, among those who are eligible to vote, too many choose not to – far too many people disenfranchise themselves by not getting involved. When we do not take full advantage of the right to vote, we not only give away our voice; our power; our ability to shape the future of the country we love – we also do a disservice to the generations of Americans before us who risked everything, including their lives, to protect this fundamental aspect of our Republic.

Be sure to get registered to vote, if you aren't already registered. It's an essential part of our democracy.

Copyright 2016, Rita R. Robison, Consumer Specialist

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