Should sports get involved with politics? Should politics enter the sports world? There is certainly an ongoing debate whether or not that is for the best, but it’s not stopping nine professional franchises from the National Basketball Association, National Football League and Major League Baseball from encouraging Americans to register to vote.
On Tuesday, coinciding with National Voter Registration Day, “Rally the Vote,” a nonpartisan coalition of sports franchises are teaming up to urge their fans to register to vote. The Chicago Bulls (NBA), Chicago White Sox (MLB), Los Angeles Clippers (NBA), Los Angeles Lakers (NBA), Milwaukee Bucks (NBA), Oakland Athletics (MLB), Sacramento Kings (NBA), San Francisco 49ers (NFL) and San Francisco Giants (MLB) now feature a platform for fans to register to vote from the team’s mobile apps, websites and social media.
Rally the Vote is certainly the first of its kind, and through a partnership with Democracy Works, a nonpartisan and nonprofit organization, it’s making voter registration easy for sports fans before the registration deadline of October 22.
“If we can make buying a ticket to a sporting event accessible in a few clicks, there is no reason why registering to vote shouldn’t be the same. Voting is one of the most important things we do as Americans and is central to our democracy, yet tens of millions of people are not registered to vote. Sports teams have a responsibility to enact positive change in their communities, and I’m proud to see so many of us coming together to help fans register to vote so that they can have a voice in elections.” — Sacramento Kings Owner and Chairman Vivek Ranadivé
In Sacramento, the Kings will air a PSA filmed with rookie forward Marvin Bagley III during preseason games and the home opener against the Utah Jazz at Golden 1 Center.
No, these nine sports franchises aren’t telling people who do vote for. They simply want to make voting registration as easy as ticket buying for the 87.9 million Americans not registered as of 2017, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.
Whether you believe politics have any place in sports, or vice versa, at least this is a creative way to bring awareness to upcoming state elections.