Register for beer

Potential voters get small samples of free beer when they sign up

June 21, 2004 - Potential voters in the Rochester, N.Y., area have an added incentive to register to vote - free beer. Monroe County Democrats and Republicans have teamed up on the project, handing out two small samples of beer to those 21 and older who register to vote at select events.


The program targets voters in the 18-to-24 range, who have the lowest registration rate in the county. The first event, an East End festival in Rochester, was last week. Organizers plan to set up at two other East End festivals this summer and two Red Wings baseball games.

Not everybody likes the idea. "I would probably say it was a good effort to do it to get people to vote, but maybe use a different tactic other than the alcohol. We just had a slice of pizza. Pizza isn't going to hurt anybody--it's better than alcohol, I think, as far as the kids go," said Diane Fox-Knoll.

But Republican and Democractic organizers are united on this issue.

Andy Moore of the Monroe County Republican Party said, "Certainly if someone doesn't want to try the tasting and wants to register to vote, obviously they're welcome to do that."

Monroe County Democratic chairperson Molly Clifford said, "We are not at all promoting alcohol. We are promoting voting, and promoting political participation."