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Politics Northwest

The Seattle Times political team explores national, state and local politics.

July 16, 2012 at 6:00 AM

Monday briefing: Rock that younger vote; Cathy McMorris Rogers, important person; Murray says: Stop it

Good morning.

Hey, all you much-coveted younger voters: What if you could register to vote without having to locate a stamp, envelope or mailbox? Would that make you more inclined to get involved in the political process?

Rock the Vote, a  group aimed at energizing  voters nationwide ages 18-29, has launched a project with the Washington Secretary of State’s office that allows folks to register to vote from their phone, iPad or computer.  RTV says Washington would be the first state to allow folks casually perusing the Rock the Vote website to easily access the Secretary of State’s online voter registration mechanism.

Rock the Vote is touted as a model for how to modernize voter registration across the country, cutting costs for states that don’t have a lot of money, reducing errors and boosting turnout, especially among young people.

Rock the Vote plans to post the tool on websites young people frequent, such as Facebook and popular artists’ websites.  Washington is a logical place to launch this, says RTV President Heather Smith: “Washington has a long history of modernizing its election system to make it more accessible to meet the needs of 21st-century voters.”

Washington was one of the earliest states — second to be exact — to adopt online voter registration in 2008. Rock The Vote promoted that feature.  Back then, a younger voter doing business with Rock the Vote needed old-fashioned contrivances, such as an envelope, a stamp and a mailbox. This year, Rock the Vote will transmit voter registrations directly to the Secretary of State’s office for regular processing. No haggling with things postal.

The Secretary of State’s office is enthusiastic about the Rock the Vote partnership because the 18-29 voting group is under-represented in voting and is sometimes hard to reach.

Cathy McMorris Rodgers
Credit: Associated Press

Washington Congresswoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers, R-Spokane, may or may not be in serious contention for a vice presidential nomination, as some have suggested, but she is an all-around important person. So says the National Journal.

Sen. Patty Murray, former preschool teacher that she is, weighed in on the 1st Congressional District campaign and said:  Stop the nasty Democrat-on-Democrat attacks.

Here is her finger-wagging admonition to squabbling Democratic candidates:

“The shadowy Super PAC attacks in the 1st Congressional District race represent an unfortunate, ugly, apparently Democrat vs. Democrat assault, and I hope they stop.  As Democrats, we shouldn’t allow ourselves to be pulled into a messy intraparty fight funded by anonymous interests.

I challenge all of the Democrats in the race to engage in a healthy, vigorous exchange of ideas during this primary campaign. The election should be about who will fight for the middle class and who will be the most effective in Congress to get our economy back on track. There is no place for this type of anonymous assault against other Democratic candidates.”

It’s still a good idea to like us on Facebook. Seattle Times Politics: Election 2012.


Comments | More in homepage, Politics Northwest, U.S. House of Representatives, U.S. Senate | Topics: 1st Congressional District, cathy mcmorris rodgers, rock the vote


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