*STATEMENT*New Bill Passed by Florida Legislature Attacks Young Voters, Must be Vetoed

Rock the Vote President Heather Smith issues the following statement in response to the passage of HB 1355.

“The Florida legislature has passed an outrageous bill that is a direct attack on the voting rights of young people and an assault on voter registration organizations like Rock the Vote.

Everyone knows young people relocate frequently, and eliminating convenience measures, such as the ability to change addresses at the polls, in addition to slashing the early voting period in half is clearly an effort to discourage them from voting.

In addition, the bill will impose unreasonable time restrictions and significant financial penalties on third-party voter registration organizations and their volunteers who conduct voter registration drives. This is an obvious attempt to harass and intimidate them from participating in the political process.

We urge Governor Scott to veto HB1355. The state legislature must not be allowed to stop young people from voting, nor will we sit on the sidelines while they attempt to put us out of business in Florida. We’ve registered hundreds of thousands of Florida’s young voters, and we will continue to fight for their right to participate.”

For interviews, please contact media@rockthevote.com.

About Rock the Vote | www.rockthevote.org

Rock the Vote’s mission is to engage and build political power for young people in our country. Using music, popular culture, new technologies and grassroots organizing for more than 20 years, Rock the Vote has registered more than 5 million young people, including a record-shattering 2.5 million registration downloads in the historic 2008 election. In 2010, Rock the Vote logged more than 300,000 voter registration downloads as part of the largest midterm election outreach strategy in our organization’s history. As the tidal wave of Millennial generation voters continues to establish its power at the polls, Rock the Vote will register millions more young people and make their voices heard. In 2011, Rock the Vote will lead the charge toward making our electoral process more accessible to young people through our high school civics program, Democracy Class, by rallying young people to stop unfair registration laws, and educating prospective 2012 candidates on how to incorporate young people in their campaigns.