May 3, 2018
Contact: Patrick Christmas
Policy Program Manager
COMMITTEE OF SEVENTY ELECTION PROGRAM SET FOR MAY 15 PRIMARY ELECTION
Nonpartisan Voter Guide Expanded to All Five Counties
PHILADELPHIA, PA – The Committee of Seventy’s century-old Election Program is ready to inform and engage voters in the May 15 primary election. For the first time, the program’s nonpartisan Voter Guide featuring candidate bios and ballot question information is also available in Bucks, Chester, Delaware and Montgomery County. Seventy’s Digital Ballot Tool, a new product created by start-up BallotReady, will also cover elections in all five southeastern counties
“Nearly three million voters live in southeast Pennsylvania,” noted Seventy CEO David Thornburgh. “We’re especially excited to offer our 2018 Voter Guide and Digital Ballot Tool to the larger region. Each garnered tens of thousands of visitors during the 2017 elections. We expect significantly higher volume this month.”
Seventy’s Election Program has evolved significantly in recent years to focus on critical voter information, with a still-new Digital Ballot Tool designed specifically to assist voters in making informed choices across the entire ballot.
● Digital Ballot Tool: Seventy is running the new resource with BallotReady, a Chicago-based firm that helps organizations inform voters about their entire ballot and create a plan to vote in every election. The site saw more than 10,000 visitors during the November 2017 election. The tool, available in English and Spanish, can be linked to directly here: committeeof70.civicengine.com
● Voter Experience Survey: Launched in November 2015, Seventy’s Voter Experience Survey is designed to collect data on what voters encounter when voting in person or by mail (via absentee or alternative ballot). The November 2017 survey received more than 2,200 responses. Seventy urges media and civic leaders to share this link: www.surveymonkey.com/r/C70VoterExpSurvey.
● May 2018 Voter Guide: Seventy’s nonpartisan May 15, 2018 Voter Guide includes descriptions of offices on the ballot, candidate bios and ballot question information. The guide also includes, for the first time, candidates’ responses to a three-question survey designed to elicit the top-line arguments for why they deserve voters’ support. Find out more about the May 15 ballot at: www.seventy.org/publications/elections-voting/may-15-2018-general-primary
● Election Ambassadors: Student Election Ambassadors from six high schools will be stationed outside polling places in the Philadelphia area to help answer voters’ questions about voting procedures and to administer a survey on voters’ trust in government. Find the results from past surveys here: www.seventy.org/get-involved/election-ambassador-corps
● Voter Rights: Seventy encourages voters to review their rights and responsibilities before heading to the polls on Tuesday. Voters can print a copy from Seventy’s website at:
www.seventy.org/tools/elections-voting/voter-rights-and-responsibilities4. Questions or problems encountered during the voting process should be directed to the following County Board of Elections hotlines:
● Bucks - 215-348-6154
● Chester - 610-344-6410
● Delaware - 610-891-4673
● Montgomery - 610-278-3275
● Philadelphia: 215-686-1590
Reports of potential election law violations should be reported to the local District Attorney’s Office. In Philadelphia, the District Attorney’s Election Fraud Task Force will also have teams ready to dispatch on Election Day and can be reached at 215-686-9641.
Seventy’s staff will also be available throughout the day to help answer voters’ questions about the voting process and any component of the 2018 Election Program. Voters and others can reach the office at: 215-557-3600. Polls are open in Pennsylvania from 7am to 8pm.
“Seventy has been in the business of preparing citizens to vote since 1904” said Thornburgh. “So we’re excited to offer this suite of 21st-century tools and resources to inform voters, improve elections and get young people engaged.”
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The Committee of Seventy is an independent nonprofit advocate for better politics and better government in Philadelphia and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. For more information, see www.seventy.org.