The passion building up ahead of the midterms later this year drove even pop star Taylor Swift to make her political positions known. In a recent Instagram post, she announced support for Tennessee Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate Phil Bredesen and Jim Cooper, running for re-election to the U.S. House in the same state, where Swift herself has lived.
Now, Vote.Org — the nonpartisan voter registration center Swift gave a shoutout to in that same post — has revealed that in the aftermath of her statement, registrations completed through their site went up, big time. The development comes as the nation continues to hurtle towards whatever the outcome might be of a number of important races around the country.
Vote.Org’s director of communications Kamari Guthrie explained to Buzzfeed that at least some 65,000 voter registrations were completed within 24 hours of the singer’s post, which represents a significant spike over previous rates. In the entire month of September, for instance, the website saw 190,178 new voter registrations, a number that would be dwarfed by just a week of the rate seen after Swift’s statements.
Although in some states, like Tennessee, the Tuesday deadline to register to vote ahead of the midterms may have driven the uptick, not every state maintains the same deadline. In other words, there’s the very real apparent possibility that a number — perhaps tens of thousands of people — registered to vote because Swift encouraged those paying attention to her to do so. Although in the grand scheme of American politics some may call that number insignificant, it’s not. Donald Trump is the president of the United States because he came out just tens — not hundreds — of thousands of votes ahead of Hillary Clinton in a key handful of Midwestern states.
Concurrent to the spike in registrations, visitors to Vote.Org spiked in the aftermath of Swift making her positions known, hitting a level second this year only to the number of website visitors on “National Voter Registration Day” last month.
Specifically in Tennessee, which faces a voter registration deadline of this Tuesday, Vote.Org saw those visits translate into at least 2,144 new registrations in the time following Swift’s remarks, compounding to a total of 5,183 and counting in the state so far this month.
‘Thank God for Taylor Swift’
The singer has faced some unsurprising, comically ridiculous backlash from old Republican men since establishing herself in an important political position ahead of the midterms.
Former Arkansas governor and father to the current White House press secretary Mike Huckabee whined, for instance:
‘So Taylor Swift has every right to be political but it won’t impact election unless we allow 13 yr old girls to vote. Still with Marsha Blackburn.’
Blackburn is the Republican challenging Bredesen. As the influx of newly registered voters across the country makes clear, Huckabee’s assessment of the situation is wrong.
President Donald Trump also went after the singer, telling reporters:
‘I’m sure Taylor Swift doesn’t know anything about her. Let’s say that I like Taylor’s music about 25 percent less now.’
It’s no doubt safe to assume that Swift doesn’t care.
Featured Image via YouTube screenshot