AARP Concerned About Older Voters' Ability To Hit The Polls In Wake Of Sandy

Nov 06, 2012, 05:00 ET from AARP

Power Outages in Boroughs & Long Island, Change of Polling Places, & Gas Shortage May Take Toll on State's Most Powerful Voting Group

NEW YORK, Nov. 6, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The 50-plus vote has long been a dominant force in New York politics, accounting for roughly 40% of all votes cast in the last two Presidential election years.  In the wake of one of the worst storms to hit New York, power outages, a gas shortage and changes in polling locations, AARP is concerned that force may be weakened and today, is urging neighbors, friends and family to help the elderly exercise their right to vote today.

With power outages expected to continue through Election Day in many parts of Manhattan, the Boroughs and Long Island, elderly who live several stories high are stuck without elevators, coupled with a gas shortage leaving many unable to drive to the polls and several last minute changes in polling places, older voters impacted by Sandy may face an uphill battle to voting.

AARP New York is calling on the community to help.  Urging neighbors, friends and family to help make sure elderly citizens who may be having difficulty, or simply may not know of polling location changes, are able to cast their votes. AARP is asking people to:

The New York State Board of Elections has also set up a toll-free number to assist voters with questions about voting, poll site changes and absentee ballots. The number is 1-855-NYS-SANDY (1-855-697-7263).

50+ vote in New York State Presidential Elections by the numbers:

  • 2004: the state's 50-plus vote made up 41% of the electorate.
  • 2008: 50-plus voters made up 38% of all votes cast.

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AARP is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization with a membership that helps people 50+ have independence, choice and control in ways that are beneficial and affordable to them and society as a whole.  AARP does not endorse candidates for public office or make contributions to either political campaigns or candidates.  We produce AARP The Magazine, the definitive voice for 50+ Americans and the world's largest-circulation magazine with over 35.1 million readers; AARP Bulletin, the go-to news source for AARP's millions of members and Americans 50+; AARP VIVA, the only bilingual U.S. publication dedicated exclusively to the 50+ Hispanic community; and our website,  AARP Foundation is an affiliated charity that provides security, protection, and empowerment to older persons in need with support from thousands of volunteers, donors, and sponsors.  We have staffed offices in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands.