Starbucks, Airbnb, Democracy Works aim to boost US voter turnout

Starbucks will join Airbnb and Target Corp, among others, in collaborating with Democracy Works Inc to boost US voter turnout to 80 per cent by 2020.
Starbucks will join Airbnb and Target Corp, among others, in collaborating with Democracy Works Inc to boost US voter turnout to 80 per cent by 2020. PHOTO: REUTERS

LOS ANGELES (REUTERS) - Democracy Works Inc, a non-partisan, non-profit organization, said on Wednesday it is joining forces with Starbucks Corp, Airbnb, Target Corp and others to boost US voter turnout to 80 per cent by 2020.

The project, called the TurboVote Challenge, was announced during one of the most contentious and unpredictable US presidential races in recent memory.

Democracy Works, which aims to create "a more representative and inclusive democracy," said voter turnout had not been above 80 per cent since 1888. An estimated 57.5 per cent of eligible citizens voted in the 2012 presidential election, according to the Bipartisan Policy Center.

The project's other founding partners include Arizona State University, the Fusion TV network, ride-sharing company Lyft, news company Mic, music service Spotify, email newsletter theSkimm, television network Univision, mall operator Westfield Corp, shared workspace provider WeWork and the Video Game Voters Network.

The partners will promote voter registration and encourage participation in local and national elections, among other things.

Starbucks Chief Executive Howard Schultz, who previously has weighed in on US politics, is expected to discuss the project at the company's annual meeting in Seattle on Wednesday.