• election ambassador pic, 11.3.15

Election Ambassadors Corps

Preparing the next generation for civic and political life is a constant endeavor, and no single project or approach is up to the task. But for the greater Philadelphia-area, Seventy welcomes high school students to spend a few hours at their local polling site speaking to voters and seeing democracy in action.

Hundreds of students have participated in the ELECTION AMBASSADOR PROGRAM since its 2015 launch, assisting voters with questions about voting procedures and conducting an exit survey about various voting-related topics.

  • official dem sample ballot nov 2015

Student teams are also encouraged to recover pictures of sample ballots and other partisan literature outside polling places. These powerful tools are used by campaigns, political parties and others to provide suggested ballot selections and are particularly effective for down ballot races with which many voters are unfamiliar.

If you're interested in offering the Election Ambassador Corps as an opportunity at your school, contact Patrick Christmas at pchristmas@seventy.org.

Download the one-page overview or Teacher FAQ to learn more about the 2018 Ambassador program.

Teachers or students interested in viewing the 2018 training presentation can find it on Prezi. Download the November 2018 Election Ambassador Handbook. Think you have what it takes to be an ambassador? Find out.

Gauging Voters' Opinions of Election Reform

Students are provided with a brief script to administer the survey with background information on the reforms covered by the questions. Seventy's position on any given reform is not mentioned in the script and students are urged not to influence respondents in any way. Given the limited and nonrandom sample size, only rough generalizations may be gleaned from the results.

NOVEMBER 7, 2017 EXIT SURVEY RESULTS FROM ~1,100 RESPONDENTS:
1) Redistricting reform: Would you support amending the PA Constitution to create an independent citizens redistricting commission responsible for drawing congressional and state legislative districts?

YES - 71%
NO - 14%
UNCERTAIN - 14%

2) Open primaries: Would you support allowing independent and third party voters to vote in primary elections? YES - 69%
NO - 23%
​UNCERTAIN - 8%
3) Percentage of votes to win: Most elections in the United States are “first-past-the-post” – the winning candidate only has to garner more votes than his or her competitors. Do you think the winner of an election should have to receive more than 50 percent of the vote? YES - 45%
NO - 38%
​UNCERTAIN - 18%

NOVEMBER 8, 2016 EXIT SURVEY RESULTS FROM ~1700 RESPONDENTS:
1) Optional vote by mail: Would you support allowing voters the option to request and submit absentee ballots before Election Day without offering a reason or excuse?

YES - 67%
NO - 27%
UNCERTAIN - 6%

2) Early voting: Would you support allowing voters the option to vote for a certain period before Election Day at a select number of early voting locations? YES - 77%
NO - 16%
​UNCERTAIN - 6%
3) Redistricting reform: Would you support amending the PA Constitution to create an independent Citizen’s Redistricting Commission responsible for drawing Congressional and state legislative districts? YES - 59%
NO - 19%
​UNCERTAIN - 22%
 
April 26, 2016 Exit Survey Results from ~1500 respondents:
1) Optional vote by mail: Would you support allowing voters the option to request and submit absentee ballots before Election Day without offering a reason or excuse? YES - 55%
NO - 34%
UNCERTAIN - 11%
2) Early voting: Would you support allowing voters the option to vote for a certain period before Election Day at a select number of early voting locations? YES - 60%
NO - 31%
UNCERTAIN - 9%
3) Redistricting reformWould you support amending the PA Constitution to create an independent Citizen’s Redistricting Commission responsible for drawing Congressional and state legislative districts? YES - 49%
NO - 26%
UNCERTAIN - 26%
4) Open primaries: Would you support allowing independent and third party voters to vote in primary elections? YES - 63%
NO - 28%
UNCERTAIN - 9%
5) Youth pre-registration: Would you support allowing young people aged 16 and 17 the opportunity to preregister to vote? (Voters must still be 18 or older to cast a ballot.)  YES - 76%
NO - 19%
UNCERTAIN - 5%

NOVEMBER 3, 2015 EXIT SURVEY RESULTS FROM ~700 RESPONDENTS:
1) Optional Vote by Mail: Would you support allowing voters the option to request and submit absentee ballots before Election Day without offering a reason or excuse?

YES - 57%
NO - 36%
UNCERTAIN - 7%

2) Early Voting: Would you support allowing voters the option to vote for a certain period before Election Day at a select number of early voting locations? YES - 80%
NO - 17%
UNCERTAIN - 4%
3) Open Primaries: Would you support allowing independent and third party voters to vote in primary elections? YES - 70%
NO - 24%
UNCERTAIN - 6%

May 19, 2015 Exit Survey Results from ~900 respondents:
1) Online voter registration: Would you support allowing eligible voters to register to vote online?

YES - 66%
NO - 27%
UNCERTAIN - 7%

2) Open primaries: Would you support allowing independent and third party voters to vote in primary elections? YES - 66%
NO - 22%
UNCERTAIN - 12%
3) Nonpartisan elections: Would you support having nonpartisan elections? YES - 49%
NO - 40%
UNCERTAIN - 11%

 

Election Ambassador Schools

 
Lesson planning around the election?

Take a look at this shortlist of civic resources, most of which are for grades 9-12. We've also prepared some readings and questions around local elections and politics. Teachers are invited to use these resources as they see fit. For questions or feedback, please contact Patrick Christmas at pchristmas@seventy.org.

Seventy appreciates the support of the Comcast Foundation, Philadelphia Foundation and Wells Fargo for their support of the Election Ambassador Corps.