Vote Early, Vote Often!

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As the Democratic National Convention winds down in Denver, and the Republican National Convention is gearing up for the Twin Cities, I want to remind everyone about resources available at your library and elsewhere to help you with the upcoming election. While those of you not registered to vote may have missed the deadline to register to vote for the September 16 primary, there is still plenty of time to register for the November 4 general election. Citizens have until October 15. Register at your town or city’s clerk office, or pick up a mail-in voter registration form at our reference desk. You can also download the national voter registration form at the Massachusetts Secretary of State’s website. In addition to downloading the registration form, you can use the site to find your polling place and your state and national representatives. Going to be out of town on November 4, but want a chance to participate in your country’s election? Download an absentee ballot application.

Want some reading to do over the long weekend? Why don’t you take the time to learn about the two major party’s candidates? Both candidates have written their own books about their experiences, including The Audacity of Hope and Dreams from my Father by Barack Obama; and Worth the Fighting For and Faith of my Fathers by John McCain. For a look at books written by authors on both sides of the aisle, take a look at our online catalog.

Online, there are several options for finding complete election coverage, but WBUR’s offical election site is one of my favorites. You can listen to speeches, and read blogs covering the conventions and the election trail. There is even a Vote by Issues quiz. Choose a candidate, and then see how much your beliefs on issues lines up with his. You may be surprised (or have what you thought confirmed).

And, as always what’s an election without having a little fun? Head down to our AV department for a copy of the CD, The First Family, a 1960’s parody of John F. Kennedy and his family. “Economy Lunch” is my favorite track, followed closely by the PSA encouraging voters to go out on election day. I knew a lot about world leaders from the 1960’s mainly because of listening to my parents’ copy of the LP. And check out Saturday Night Live’s election page. Included are videos from SNL’s 33 year history of covering presidential politics, including Phil Hartman as Bill Clinton taking a jog to McDonald’s. I hope they start including some of their skits from the 2000 election, which turned a very confusing 6 weeks into a laugh fest.

posted by Laura

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