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Voting Help from Common Cause

Six days to go before Election Day!  We’re mobilizing all Common Cause staff around the country, setting up our Washington “control room,” and working hard to get election information out to voters and the press.  This morning, USA Today mentions our work in a front page article titled “Many eyes will watch the polls.”

We’ve had great support from you for our work on the 2006 elections.  This election is crucial to our ambitious goal of major election reform, which we call our Get It Straight by 2008 campaign.  What happens this year will set the stage for reform.


So here are some simple but valuable things you can do to help.

1.  Pass along our quick guide to voting to everyone you know.  Here are the main points; you can also print out a flyer1.


  • Am I registered?  Contact your local elections office to make sure, or call 1-866-MY-VOTE-1 to connect.

  • Where am I supposed to vote?  Again, 1-866-MY-VOTE-1 can help.

  • What sort of ID will I need to bring?  Find the answer on our Elections 2006 webpage2.

  • What if my name isn’t on the voter rolls when I arrive at the polling place?  If you’re sure you are registered, vote on a provisional ballot and check back the next day to make sure your vote was counted.

  • How do I know if the voting machine counted my vote?  If it prints a paper record of your vote, check the paper carefully.  If the voting machine isn’t working correctly, tell a poll worker immediately.  Whatever you do, don’t leave without casting a ballot.

2.  Tell us about your voting experience through our Voter Survey 20063.  After you’ve done that, tell your friends and family to share their voting experiences, as well.  In 2004, thousands of people participated in our survey.  Their responses helped us shape our election reform agenda during the last two years.  Now we’re looking for your help once again.

3.  Help us publicize the voter help line.  The MyVote1 voter phone line is up and running, and is already receiving calls.  Print out a flyer4, and spread the word.

4.  Volunteer to help on Election Day.  We’ve assembled a collection of links on our Voter Protection webpage5.  Find out what’s happening in your state, and help out if you can. 

Yes, there’s much to do in the next six days.  We can’t do it without your help.


One more thing:  on Thursday night, HBO will present an important documentary about the problems with electronic voting machines.  Hacking Democracy will air at 9:00 PM on November 2, and will be repeated in the following days.  Watch it, and then keep an eye out for our alerts about ways to take action to fix this problem with an audited paper trail.

Thank you for all your help.

Chellie Pingree
P.S.  There are two phone lines that can help with problems on Election Day:  call 1-866-MY-VOTE-1 to find out where to vote, connect to election officials, and report voting problems, and call 1-866-OUR-VOTE if you need legal help or want to talk to a live person.

1.  Five Things You Need to Know About Voting in 2006
2.  Elections 2006 homepage
3.  Voter Survey 2006
4.  MyVote1 flyer
5.  Voter Protection organizations

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