Taylor Swift Persuades Fans to the Polls in Video: 'You Have to Go and Make Change by Voting'
Taylor Swift continued her increasingly outspoken political activism on Tuesday by reminding her fans to hit the polls on Election Day
She did something good!
“What is today? Tuesday. What was it that everyone is supposed to do today?” she pretends to wonder at the top of her Instagram Story video. “What was it? Oh yeah, you gotta go vote today.”
Joking aside, the 28-year-old pop powerhouse addressed her millions of followers with inspiring, need-to-know facts as the country heads into the most controversial midterm decision in recent history.
“I’m seeing a lot of underestimation of young voters and this new generation who now have the right to vote just in the last couple of years, but these are people who grew up post 9/11, they grew up with school shooting drills at their schools,” Swift said. “These are people who want to vote.”
“It’s not enough to just want change. It’s not enough to just want to vote,” she continued in the video series. “You have to go and make change by voting and today is your opportunity to do that. I promise you it feels so wonderful to exercise that right that you have.”
She then signed off with a cheerful “Happy voting, you guys” — and a reminder to tag her in any #justvoted selfies that they share.
Swift famously — and controversially — remained reticent on her political leanings until earlier this month, when she broke her silence. In an Oct. 7 Instagram post she revealed she would be voting for Democratic Tennessee Senate candidate Phil Bredesen rather than the Republican incumbent, Marsha Blackburn.
“In the past I’ve been reluctant to publicly voice my political opinions, but due to several events in my life and in the world in the past two years, I feel very differently about that now,” Swift wrote.
“I always have and always will cast my vote based on which candidate will protect and fight for the human rights I believe we all deserve in this country,” she continued. “I believe in the fight for LGBTQ rights, and that any form of discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender is WRONG. I believe that the systemic racism we still see in this country towards people of color is terrifying, sickening and prevalent.”
Swift added: “I cannot vote for someone who will not be willing to fight for dignity for ALL Americans, no matter their skin color, gender or who they love. Running for Senate in the state of Tennessee is a woman named Marsha Blackburn. As much as I have in the past and would like to continue voting for women in office, I cannot support Marsha Blackburn.”
Later on Tuesday, Swift reposted Bredesen’s post saying he voted, adding the message, “Good luck today!!”
Swift’s post caused a spike in voter registration.
“We are up to 65,000 registrations in a single 24-hour period since T. Swift’s post,” Kamari Guthrie, Vote.org’s director of communications, told BuzzFeed News.
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Saying “Thank God for Taylor Swift,” Guthrie added that 155,940 people checked out the website – which gets an average of 14,078 hits per day – in a 24-hour period.
Swift especially made an impact in her adopted state. “Vote.org saw [Tennessee] registrations spike specifically since Taylor’s post,” Guthrie told BuzzFeed News. Vote.org reportedly raked in at least 2,144 new voter registrations from Tennessee in the last 36 hours — after registering 2,811 voters there total in September.