Congressman Edolphus "Ed" Towns (NY-10) today encouraged civic groups, neighborhood organizations and religious organizations involved in voter education and registration to increase their efforts to register voters, noting that Tuesday, September 25th is National Voter Registration Day. "It is critical that all citizens eligible to vote participate in the process," Congressman Towns stated. "As a member of the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) I am keenly aware of the sacrifices African Americans have made to overcome obstacles that would deny us our voice at the ballot box. Many have given their lives so that we can go to the polls and cast our votes."
The CBC is conducting voter awareness and voter registration events across the country on September 25th--National Voter Registration Day--to encourage unregistered voters to sign up before Election Day on November 6th. It is estimated that as many as six million African Americans are eligible to vote but remain unregistered. The CBC says it is alarmed by the efforts being made to restrict voting through requirements for official state identification that may impede as many as 5 million people from registering to vote and/or casting a ballot this November.
At least 34 states have introduced laws that would require voters to show photo identification in order to vote and at least 12 states have introduced laws that would require proof of citizenship, such as a birth certificate, to register to vote or to vote. The states that have already cut back on voting rights provide 171 electoral votes in 2012, 63 percent of the 270 needed to win the presidency.
New York residents must register by October 12th to be eligible to vote in the November General Election on Tuesday, November 6th. If you are honorably discharged from the military or become a naturalized citizen after October 12th, you may register in person at the board of elections up until October 26th. Notices of change of address from registered voters received by October 17th by a county board of elections must be processed and entered in the records in time for the General Election.
"While you may believe your vote in New York is not necessary to elect President Barack Obama, it is still imperative that you participate in the political process in order to expand political power in your community," Rep. Towns stated.