I Smoke Pot & I Vote: HeadCount Is Leveraging Cannabis Policy to Get Folks to the Polls


This summer time, non-profit and non-partisan group HeadCount launched its first ever single difficulty marketing campaign, enlisting artists like Margo Price for the trigger. The Cannabis Voter Project is an initiative that harnesses American's present curiosity in marijuana coverage to get them to register to vote and make it out to the polls.

HeadCount has been registering music followers to vote at live shows, festivals and different occasions since 2004 and noticed a chance to interact extra residents with the topic of hashish.

"It is admittedly the primary single based mostly difficulty marketing campaign that HeadCount is doing," says Cannabis Voter Project's director Sam D'Arcangelo. "The first purpose why we selected the hashish difficulty is that hashish coverage is without doubt one of the few points on the market that has the ability to get individuals who in any other case wouldn't vote, out to the polls. It has the power to drive voter turnout in a giant approach that a variety of different single points simply don't."

"Another purpose that we targeted on it’s as a result of HeadCount is a non-partisan group. One of the attention-grabbing issues about marijuana coverage is that it’s pretty non-partisan. You can't actually get an concept if the place somebody goes to face on the difficulty from their occasion alignment," D'Arcangelo tells Amplify. "It was a good way for us to remain in our non-partisan lane whereas additionally specializing in a difficulty that has the ability to drive voter turnout. That's finally what we wish, to register voters."

The group doesn’t take a stand on hashish coverage, however it does present an in-depth database on the place congresspeople and governors stand on the difficulty. CannabisVoter.information provides residents the possibility to search for any representatives based mostly on state and see if their views on hashish align with their very own. The breakdown contains the place the consultant stands so far as medical and leisure use, their data on hemp, CBD, whether or not or not veterans ought to have entry to marijuana and extra.

The website additionally contains an easy-to-use on-line registration web page and information from varied retailers that preserve voters knowledgeable on cannabis-related points together with High Times, CannabisNow, The Cannabist and extra.

"There are lots of people on the market who care about marijuana coverage and we wish to get these folks excited by voting. We use marijuana coverage as an entrance level to get folks within the electoral course of, the democratic course of and collaborating in our democracy," says D'Arcangelo.

Much like HeadCount which has registered almost half 1,000,000 voters since 2004, Cannabis Voter Project has teamed up with artists to achieve out to their followers and unfold consciousness. For National Voter Registration Day, artists resembling Margo Price, Cheech and Chong, Mark Brownstein from Disco Biscuits and the Grateful Dead's Bill Kreutzmann posted photos of themselves with indicators or T-shirts that learn "I smoke pot and I vote."

Cannabis Voter Project can also be headed out on the highway with funk band Lettuce this month. This would be the initiative's first wholly branded tour the place they are going to arrange Cannabis Voter Project cubicles at each present. The mission and the tour have been kicked off previous to this yr's extremely publicized midterm elections in November.

"HeadCount is all the time at its busiest throughout an election cycle. We wished to get this launched earlier than the 2018 elections as a result of within the final yr or so hashish coverage has change into a way more mainstream difficulty. It has change into a factor that individuals are speaking about. It has change into a factor the place the panorama is altering very quickly," says D'Arcangelo. "We figured now’s good time to do one thing like this and seize a variety of the keenness and the curiosity round hashish coverage."

Check out the Cannabis Voter Project web site right here for extra info on coverage, the place they’re headed subsequent and even some "I Smoke Pot and I Vote" merch.

This article was initially printed by Amplify.