The Westside Gazette

Operation Big Vote is in full swing

Pastors who believe in “Souls To The Polls”

Operation Big Vote is in full swing

By Staff writer

      On Friday morning Oct. 5, 2012 Operation Big Vote (OBV) kicked off its campaign to increase awareness and voter participation in the Black community. At a formal breakfast with over 20 prominent Black ministers, the non-partisan mission and plans for OBV were laid out.

     “We are a non-Partisan organization whose mission is to enhance voter education and participation in the Black community,” stated Dorsey C. Miller, director of OBV.

     It has been nearly 20 years since Operation Big Vote in Broward first unleashed an enormous effort to boost voter turnout.

    “We are shooting for 100 percent turnout of registered voters; 99 and a half just won’t do,” Miller continued. “That’s our new slogan, that’s our mantra. We are committed to our cause and everyone has to be involved in the election process.”

     Latest data compiled by the United States Elections Project says the percentage of eligible voters who have cast their ballots during the presidential elections ranged from about 49 percent to 63 percent and that percentage is even lower among Black registered voters.

     Increasing that percentage to include all Black people is the goal of OBV. Getting the financially burdened Black folk, the disenfranchised, that frustrated Black person at the end of our spectrum; what can we do to bring this population of us out to vote?

     Dr. Mack King Carter, pastor emeritus of the New Mount Olive Baptist Church, in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., says that it is inclusion.     

     “It’s more crucial this time we are ignoring the poor, which angers God. Our churches got to remind the people that the Lord loves the poor. A lot of times poor people don’t feel in-vested; we got to talk to them. Yes, they need to go to the polls and vote but at the same time we have to get them invested.                      

     “We need to reassure them that we are working together for all of us.”

     Operation Big Vote plans to utilize every mode of communication, including social media to accomplish their goals.

     OBV will be trying everything to get Black Broward County connected, rejuvenated and motivated in the impending elections. From voter education forums and voter rallies to motorcades  and  transportation to the polls.

     OBV will be connecting with entertainers, churches, organizational events and other out-of-the-box approaches to get voters to the polls. They are seeking volunteers to assist with the various aspects of this massive effort.

     Operation Big Vote is dedicated to increasing civic engagement and reducing voter apathy in the Black community and other underserved and marginalized communities.

     On Oct. 23 at Blanche Ely High School beginning at 7 p.m. there will be a pep rally. Then On Oct. 27, the first day of early voting, beginning at 11:30, join Al Sharpton and the Wynans at the Lauderhill Mall. On Nov. 3, last day for early voting, join in the ‘Step Up to the Polls’ march starting at 7:30 a.m. at Avenue Executive, 405 N.W. Seventh Ave.

    For additional information and scheduled events or if you are interested in joining or volunteering with Operation Big Vote,  please contact Dr. Dorsey Miller (954) 298-4042, Sheryl Dickey (954) 467-6822, Bobbie Grace (954) 396-0941.


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