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Monday, October 26, 2020  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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News >  Spokane

Costumed canvassers try to scare up voters

Trick or Vote campaign targets younger electorate

Gonzaga University students Julian Franco, left, and Iriza Guray check the West Central neighborhood addresses where they need to doorbell during Sunday’s Trick or Vote canvassing event.  (Colin Mulvany)
Gonzaga University students Julian Franco, left, and Iriza Guray check the West Central neighborhood addresses where they need to doorbell during Sunday’s Trick or Vote canvassing event. (Colin Mulvany)

Most trick-or-treaters ask for candy. But on Sunday, several dozen in Spokane requested civic engagement.

About 80 people in costumes canvassed city neighborhoods Sunday encouraging younger adults to mail in their ballots.

“The point is to create a fun way for the next generation to become civically engaged,” said Mariah McKay, of NextUp Spokane.

The Halloween event, called Trick or Vote, was sponsored by NextUp Spokane and Washington Bus, two groups working to increase youth political involvement. Washington Bus’ website says it supports “progressive candidates,” but participants in Trick or Vote said they were not advocating on behalf of any candidate and that homes were chosen based only on the age of registered voters (44 and under). They did, however, distribute information friendly to a few ballot initiatives, including a proposed state income tax.

Isaiah Day, a Spokane resident who helped organize the event for Washington Bus, said Halloween is the perfect excuse to doorbell. He said candidates often ignore youths.

“Young people, they don’t really see politicians addressing them directly,” said Day, who was dressed as a pirate.

Only two days remain to cast a ballot in Tuesday’s election.

In Washington, ballots must be postmarked by Tuesday to be counted. Elections officials warn voters to check mailbox pickup times before mailing a ballot to ensure it will get a proper postmark. Voters also can drop ballots in drop boxes outside all public libraries within Spokane County and at the downtown Spokane Transit Authority Plaza and at the Elections Office, 1033 W Gardner Ave., until 8 p.m. Tuesday.

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