help college students maximize the impact of their vote - new site:

bumped from the diaries -- jonathan

Students can choose to vote in their school state or their home state.

The numbers are big enough to matter.  A lot.
For example, more than 62,000 students from Ohio are attending school in other states.  Iowa has 50,000 students from out-of-state is a new site that makes it easy to compare any two states and see how critical the presidential race is in each.

After comparing states they can get registered and sign up to vote absentee.

Many students don't realize that they have a choice, and many others aren't registered at all. Registration deadlines are coming fast (many are on Oct 6th).

This is a high leverage and very easy way to get more votes where they count most.  Please help more students become aware of their options by sending countmore to all your college age friends.

The site is clear that it is only measuring importance with regard to the presidential election.  Down ballot candidates and ballot initiatives are an important consideration too.  We just make it easy to understand how much votes will count in the presidential race.

We hope to get students talking about swing states and the electoral college, and to get them fired up about not being disenfranchised, and to make sure that their friends are all registered and current, wherever they're voting.

If you're in college or have connections to a school, you can also help by reaching out to

  • college newspapers
  • college dems
  • environmental groups, labor groups, and women's groups.
  • others...

The site is non-partisan, developed by civic software company (Matt Lerner, Mike Mathieu, and myself).  

More details at and in the CountMore FAQ.

Tags: absentee, critical, electoral college, mccain, obama, Presidential, students, swing states, voter registration (all tags)



Do you plan to add fields

to reflect hotly contested House and State Legislature races?

by benmasel 2008-09-22 03:49PM | 0 recs
Re: Do you plan to add fields

we weren't planning to, but we might add a link to a great source for that information if it exists elsewhere.  

Any suggestions?  

It would need to be a non-partisan listing of tight races.  Even better would be a single source for both of those, plus hotly contested ballot initiatives, governors, mayors, senate seats, ...

by jeko 2008-09-22 05:21PM | 0 recs
Re: help college students

this is brilliant

by wellinformed 2008-09-22 04:30PM | 0 recs
Know state residency requirements

For all college activists.  Know and inform fellow students the requirements for voting where you're going to school, and have info sheet for plan B, for absentee voting from their home district.

Do not be intimidated, do not allow to be turned away.  YOUR VOTE COUNTS!

by mydailydrunk 2008-09-22 04:45PM | 0 recs

Please remember to have a disclaimer telling theses students to make sure that registering in a particular state does not comprimise their financial aid. Many students that recieve grants or scholarships from state governments may disqualify themselves for subsequent years if they register as residents of another state.  As long as you inform them of this fact, this is a wonderful idea.

by goodleh 2008-09-22 05:47PM | 0 recs
Re: students

We do have that, right under the "Register to Vote" button.  Thanks!

As I understand it, most scholarships are not at risk, but we agree that it's a very important point.  If students have scholarships that require residency they should check with their financial aid office before registering to vote in their home state.

FYI, the bulletin appears and when the site recommends voting at home, and for toss-ups, but it is hidden when the site recommends voting at school.  It's also covered in the FAQ.

by jeko 2008-09-22 06:25PM | 0 recs
Re: help college students maximize the impact of t

Well, this is a really good idea, but I just plugged in Missouri and California and got "toss-up," so I think there might be something going on...

by CrazyDrumGuy 2008-09-22 08:28PM | 0 recs
Re: help college students maximize the impact of t

Thanks, you're right.  Fixed now. CA was mis-ranked.

FYI, the details of our 5 tier system for comparisons, and the states in each tier are listed in the FAQ.

by jeko 2008-09-22 10:05PM | 0 recs
Wil they still be tax dependents?

If college kids claim residency in a state other than their home state, will it be an issue when their parents claim them as tax deductions?  Don't dependents have to officially live in the same house as the parents?  

by SueBee 2008-09-22 08:55PM | 0 recs
Re: Will they still be tax dependents?

We've heard this rumor too, but it's not true:

From es/svg_faq/#taxes

"When your parents claim you as a dependent, they get to take a $3500 tax deduction, which reduces the amount of income they get taxed on.  Students are sometimes told that registering to vote will make it impossible for their parents to claim them as a dependent.  This is simply not true."

Follow the link for more details

by jeko 2008-09-23 09:11AM | 0 recs
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by timothy moriarty 2008-09-22 10:57PM | 0 recs


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