Nation’s electric cooperatives launch Co-ops Vote Initiative
By Justin LaBerge, Straight Talk Alert
America’s electric cooperatives have launched a non-partisan, nationwide effort to promote civic engagement and voter participation in the communities they serve.
Jeffrey Connor, interim CEO of the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA), unveiled the Co-ops Vote program at the association’s 74th annual meeting in New Orleans. Learn more news from the NRECA annual meeting.
“Through Co-ops Vote, we want to help our members know when elections are, what’s at stake and how to make their voices heard,” Connor said. “Who folks vote for isn’t really as important as the fact that they do vote.”A new website, vote.coop, offers co-op members information on the voter registration process in their state, dates of elections and information on the candidates running in those elections.
In keeping with its non-partisan goals, the initiative will not be endorsing specific candidates for office.
NRECA president Mel Coleman said the program would help ensure the voices of rural Americans are heard. “We want to make sure our government knows that rural America matters,” Coleman said. “This campaign isn’t about divisive, partisan issues. It’s about real people in real places facing real challenges. It’s about our co-ops living out the principles of our movement: Concern for community and democratic control.”
Coleman added: “When our parents and grandparents set out to electrify rural America, they didn’t have time to ask the person next to them about their views on economic or social policy. Their economic policy was ‘we need to save this community’ and their social policy was ‘let’s do it together.’ I hope the Co-ops Vote program can help rekindle that spirit of cooperation.”