Rock the Vote Kicks off 2008 General Election Campaign

The 2008 general presidential election has begun and Rock the Vote is launching its campaign to engage, register, and turn out young people in November.  Over 6.6 million 18-29 year olds have voted in the Democratic and Republican nominating contests, and we expect this November will see the highest young voter turnout in American history.

“The proposition that “Young People Don’t Vote” has finally been proven wrong,” says Heather Smith, executive director of Rock the Vote.  “We have propelled candidates to victory in both parties and reinvigorated our democracy with millions of new young voters this primary season.  We are now poised to be decisive in choosing the winner in November.”

Rock the Vote’s 2008 campaign will register 2 million young people through online and offline efforts, and include various programs to educate and turnout this generation of voters including an interactive mobile program, a national public service announcement (PSA) campaign, a youth journalism program, volunteer street teams, and a platform announced today which outlines youth demands of the next President.  More details on some of the 2008 programs below:

  • Rock the Vote’s national mobile campaign, supported by AT&T, begins today; anyone texting “vote” (“or vota” in Spanish) to RTVOTE (788683) will automatically receive voter registration and Election Day reminders, political quizzes, polls, celebrity messages, and mobilization alerts all designed to help fuel this movement of young people all the way to the ballot box in November.
  • Our national advertising campaign kicks off with Christina Aguilera featured in our first broadcast and print executions hitting TVs and newspapers later this summer. The broadcast spot opens with Christina singing a rendition of “America the Beautiful” to her newborn son wrapped in an American Flag. Targeting young people, the television spots along with the print ad end with a call to action:  its time to make history, its time to rock the vote; register to vote at
  • Rock the Trail, our youth journalism program, supported by AT&T, received hundreds of applications from across the country over the past month and with the help of our advisory committee of top political and cultural reporters, the following individuals have been chosen to join our team this year: Raldon Lumpkins of Oakland, California, Rebecca McDonald of St. Paul, Minnesota; Sarah Burris of Leawood, Kansas; Jocelyn Sida of Los Angeles, California and DeNishia Yearby of Tallahassee, Florida. Throughout this election, Rock the Trail reporters will be out on the campaign trail covering the hottest election news, youth organizing efforts, and issues ranging from the economy to the environment—all from the youth perspective. Content will be available on,,,, and other sites in addition to AT&T mobile phones.
  • This year our volunteer street team efforts will conduct voter registration, education and mobilization activities online and off, at concerts, festivals, and in the streets.  These activities are national, but will be expanded on in ten key states including: Colorado, New Mexico, Ohio, Virginia, Michigan, Nevada, Pennsylvania, Florida, California and New York.
  • Our youth platform announced today lies out our demands for the Presidential candidates and calls on both Obama and McCain to address our needs and our hopes for our country, and address head-on the values and issues that young people care about most:  a more democratic and open society, and a better future with more opportunity for all.

Rock the Vote is committed to helping young people elect a new president in November who represents us – and who fights for us – and to making sure he makes good on his promises after elected.  Already during this primary season, more than 925,000 individuals have downloaded the voter registration form from Rock the Vote’s website and more than 45,000 individuals have joined our mobile efforts.

As a generation we are taking the future in our own hands. We are organizing and activating our peers.  We are voting.  We recognize the power we have to create real change, and we are prepared to use it. This is our country.  This is our voice.  And together we will decide.  If there is one thing for certain in these uncertain times, our generation knows now is the time we will ROCK THE VOTE.

About Rock the Vote:

Rock the Vote’s mission is to engage and build the political power of young people in order to achieve progressive change in our country.  Rock the Vote uses music, popular culture and new technologies to engage and incite young people to register and vote in every election. And we give young people the tools to identify, learn about, and take action on the issues that affect their lives, and leverage their power in the political process.  Rock the Vote is creative, effective, and controlled by nobody’s agenda but our own – we tell it like it is and pride ourselves on being a trusted source for information on politics.  We empower the 45 million young people in America who want to step up, claim their voice in the political process, and change the way politics is done.