Members of Florida State University and Florida A&M University chapters of the NAACP rallied Friday to encourage early voting. The decision from Leon County's Supervisor of Elections to not provide campuses with early voting sites has left some worried it will dissuade young voters from showing up to the polls. Statistics show that young people are less likely to vote than other age groups. Florida State's NAACP chapter president Nastassia Janvier is hoping she can persuade other students to cast a ballot at the Civic Center.
“The numbers that we project at this polling site will impact how we get a polling site in the future for the 2020 election and to also rile students up to vote early, to mobilize ourselves and not require other people to do it for ourselves,” Janvier says.
The National Director for the youth and college division for the NAACP, Tiffany Dena Loftin, flew down from Washington to support the students. She says rallies like this are important.
“It’s students empowering other students. We can’t continue to guilt trip people into elections and we also can’t have older folks tell young people to just turn out and vote. At this point in time it has to be young people who are actually leading that generation of folks who are the largest electorate in this country."
Gubernatorial Candidate Andrew Gillum also attended the rally. He called on the crowd of mostly students to change the political climate of Florida.
“Power seeds nothing without a demand and demands aren’t made just on snapchat and on twitter and on Facebook. The way you make good on a demand is by showing up and letting an elected official know that you have the power to put them in office or the power to take them out of office. That is the power that you have. That is the power that you possess. That is the power that they want you to forget that you have. That’s why they count you out. That’s why they ignore you. It’s because they don’t respect you," Gillum says.
Students marched from FAMU to the Civic Center despite the rainy weather.