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Vote.org, formerly Long Distance Voter, is a United States-based, nonpartisan 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that provides online voter guides for every state, including voter registration forms, absentee ballot applications, and information on deadlines, directions, and ID and residency requirements.
Vote.org was founded as Long Distance Voter (LDV) in January 2008 by a group of professional investigators and voter advocates who sought to provide greater access to absentee voting information online.
In April 2016, funded by Y Combinator, Long Distance Voter relaunched as Vote.org with funding with the explicit goal of reaching 100% voter turnout nationally. In Fall 2016, Vote.org worked with Hustle to run a nationwide SMS peer-to-peer voter registration program in which they sent 3.8 million text messages to nearly 2.8 million low-propensity voters in the final two weeks, including over 980K on election day alone. A quantitative evaluation of this program found that polling location texting significantly both outperformed "make a plan" texting and a no-text control condition by 0.2%.
In March 2018, Vote.org initiated a campaign (now branded as electionday.org) pushing companies to allow their employees time off to vote on Election Day. As of 2020, over 1000 companies had opted to participate.
In the summer of 2019, the organization's board terminated founder and CEO Debra Cleaver, citing "differences in opinion." Cleaver was replaced with former Vote.org board member Andrea Hailey. This move that proved contentious to donors and partners - donor commitments up to $4 million were withdrawn upon Cleaver’s termination, and scuttled partnerships include ViacomCBS, the Voter Participation Center, and the League of Conservation Voters Education Fund. Cleaver has since founded VoteAmerica, a voter mobilization project that focused on increasing turnout among unlikely voters, especially by mail-in votes, during the 2020 general election. CEO Andrea Hailey has secured new partnerships with organizations like the NAACP Youth and College Division, the Transformative Justice Coalition, the Black Church Action Fund, GLSEN and wikiHow.
In June 2020, Vote.org filed suit against Maine, in partnership with two citizens and the Alliance for Retired Americans, citing its inaccessible and out-of-date voting system. Some of the most prominent issues that Vote.org flagged in Maine’s voting system were few voter registration options, a lack of prepaid postage, ballot collection hurdles, an Election Day receipt deadline, and rejection of absentee ballots that had technical defects.
Vote.org's 2020 election work included a combination of digital and offline tools, including: a "Print and Mail" program sending voter forms to people without printers, terrestrial radio ads, digital partnerships with influencers, informational billboards, texts combatting disinformation, Spanish translation of existing voter mobilization tools, a WhatsApp bot, and deployment of food trucks to encourage voters to stay in line as they waited to vote.
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