Humane advocates who use their right to vote stand at the heart of our mission to end the suffering of animals—just as the right to vote is itself foundational to American democracy.
That’s why, with hundreds of other organizations supporting National Voter Registration Day, we’re urging our members and friends to update their voter registrations, prepare to vote in their communities, and encourage others to do the same. If you’re “vote ready,” you’re ready to make your voice heard in our democracy, whether it involves animal welfare or other issues of concern to you.
Here’s the thing. If you have moved recently, haven’t voted in a while, have changed your name or are just turning 18, you may not be vote ready. Please act now to update and confirm your registration.
As an engaged and active voter, you should set aside time to evaluate candidates standing for office and any issues on the ballot, and to study the policy positions involved. Also, be sure to identify the location of your polling place.
If you can do so, please spread the word among friends and family to check their voter registration status, or join a voter registration initiative in your community. Our democracy works best when more citizens participate. We’re all better off when our elections reflect the views and values of every stakeholder. That’s one reason why we must work together to ensure that every eligible American is registered to vote.
On any given day, in legislatures across the country, elected leaders at all levels are making decisions that affect the fate of animals, every day and everywhere. Whether it involves defending the Endangered Species Act, cracking down on puppy mills or providing greater protection for animals in laboratories or factory farms, ensuring the passage of groundbreaking local, state, and federal legislation is almost wholly dependent on the projection of humane voices and humane values into the political sphere.
Every election has profound impacts on the prospects for advancing animal welfare—and this year is no different. In 2022, every seat in the US House of Representatives plus 34 seats in the US Senate are up for election, along with those of 36 governors, 30 attorneys general, 27 secretaries of states, and thousands of state legislators, mayors, city council members, school boards, and more. There is not one of these positions that does not have a direct impact on the lives of people and animals alike.
Elections are decided by those who vote—and to vote you must first be registered. Be vote ready—update your voter registration here—and then ask your friends and others to register, too. We’ve got lots of work ahead of us, and the strength of our voting power will translate into tangible gains for the animals we seek to defend and protect, now and in the future.
National Voter Registration Day is a day of celebration—one on which we recognize the vitality of our political system, the presence of new American citizens participating in our democracy, the coming of age of newly eligible, young voters preparing to cast a ballot for the first time, and the prospect of new neighbors getting involved in our communities. But it is also a day for reckoning with the challenges we face as animal advocates in the near term. The stakes are high, and we’ve got lots of work ahead of us.