Judging by the price of her summer concert tickets on the secondary market (as a dad who was asked many times), Taylor Swift’s fans have a strong bond with their hero.
And that’s great. Every generation has its stars.
Every generation has stars who also get actively involved in causes dear to their heart.
Taylor Swift had a great idea. Why not strongly encourage her fans, most of them young and liberal, to register to vote, to help with all causes?
So she did just that, and not only did it work, it blew people away.
“Our site was averaging 13,000 users every 30 minutes — a number that Taylor Swift would be proud of,” Andrea Hailey, CEO of Vote.org, said in a statement. (13 is Swift’s famously lucky number.)”
But Axios then writes what sounds like a conflict with their own report:
35,252 people newly registered to vote on Tuesday — a 23% jump from last year’s National Voter Registration Day, and the largest since the 2020 general election year, according to Vote.org. There was a 115% increase in 18-year-olds registering compared to last year. 157,041 eligible voters visited the site.
There is more than a bit of confusion because the 13,000 per half-hour makes it sound like 13,000 were registering every 30 minutes.
The Independent compounded the problem by making it sound like eight million people responded to Swift’s request. The Independent reported:
“Eight million young people will be newly eligible voters by Election Day 2024. And, the time is now to get ready for the elections taking place this fall and next year. Several states have elections in November of this year and many other states will have primaries in the first few months of 2024. That’s why this National Voter Registration Day is so important: we’re at the starting line of the next presidential election.”
And, here’s the thing: whether it is 35,000 total, 13,000 every 30 minutes, or the aspirational eight million, Swift clearly wields immense power and has not been shy about being a Democrat.
Swift first came out using her political voice in 2018 and supported Democratic candidates while telling her fans to get out and make a difference. To be accurate, she came out after criticism for not using that powerful voice.
Swift said at the time, it was Donald Trump who brought her voice out:
“As a country musician, I was always told it’s better to stay out of [politics]. The Trump presidency forced me to lean in and educate myself. I found myself talking about government and the presidency and policy with my boyfriend [then actor Joe Alwyn], who supported me in speaking out.”
I am more surprised to hear that she used to be a country artist than I am about the numbers. Evidently, she’s transitioned her music to do a little more. But she hasn’t transitioned her policy concerns:
“I started talking to my family and friends about politics and learning as much as I could about where I stand. I’m proud to have moved past fear and self-doubt, and to endorse and support leadership that moves us beyond this divisive, heartbreaking moment in time.”
One couldn’t help but respect her undeniable talent, but my respect for her just increased exponentially.
This could truly be the secret sauce that wins in 2024. The youth vote, the one that is always “less” than that of the older generations, the one that is never courted by the candidates.
Who am I to give Swift some advice? But I am going to give it a shot anyway.
Charlie Kirk and his group at TPUSA have a lot of kids who never knew anything different and who are Taylor Swift fans. Keep encouraging 18-year-olds and up to vote, absolutely.
But get back to telling them why they should vote to the left. A lot of those kids have never heard anything different from what their MAGA parents have told them. Teach them! Talk to them.
Report continues below tweet.
TAYLOR SWIFT motivating her fans to vote BLUE!
Go Taylor!💙💙💙 https://t.co/iTpF05CiQN
— Isabel Santos 🟧🟦🌊🌊🟦📙 (@Busyisaworkshop) September 20, 2023
Better yet, write a song about it, one that sells eight million copies on the first day.
Fun fact: after @taylorswift13 posted on Instagram today directing her followers to register to vote on @votedotorg, our site was averaging 13,000 users every 30 minutes. 13! Let’s just say her reputation for being a mastermind is very well-earned! #NVRD https://t.co/L80M5KRakq
— Nick Morrow (@NRMorrow) September 20, 2023
I can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and on X @JasonMiciak.
Editor’s note: This is an opinion column that solely reflects the opinions of the author.