Today is National Voter Registration Day, which means volunteers will be out in full force to register eligible voters for the impending presidential election.
To mark the occasion, the Latino Vote Alliance will send teams to five local Target stores. They picked Target for the blitz because San Jose police recently arrested a community leader, Salvador “Chava” Bustamante, while he was recruiting new voters outside Target at Story and King roads.
Today’s effort is part of an ongoing campaign to mobilize the Latino community in Santa Clara County. Throughout the state, Latino voter registration has been on the upswing. Polls show that trend has a lot to with Donald Trump’s xenophobic rhetoric about Mexican immigrants.
“Latinos have long been under-represented in our voter rolls, and thus in our policy making,” said Maria Noel Fernandez, Director of Organizing and Civic Engagement at Working Partnerships USA and co-chair of the Latino Vote Alliance. “We’re out across the city working to change that.”
Overall turnout for the Nov. 8 election is projected to hover around 85 percent. But only 71 percent of eligible Latino voters are expected to head to the polls, according to the Latino Vote Alliance.
In this county alone, some 250,000 young adults and Latinos whoa re eligible to vote remain unregistered. “With all that hangs in the balance this fall, we must change that, and we can,” Fernandez said.
Santa Clara County’s Registrar of Voters Office has joined the National Voter Registration Day effort, the nation’s largest one-day push to sign up new voters. The last day to register to vote is Oct. 24. For information about how to sign up or to check your registration status, click here.
“This election is important, and every eligible American should have the chance to weigh in,” Registrar of Voters Shannon Bushey said in a statement. “We want to make sure that every citizen who wants the opportunity to vote on Election Day has their registration up to date by the deadline.”