New York’s Democratic Party is writing to registered Democrats telling them that unnamed organizations are monitoring their neighborhood’s election turnout and that the party will want an explanation if they do not cast a ballot.
The letters went out to about 1 million voters last week ahead of Tuesday’s election. It represents a get-out-the-vote tactic that is being used increasingly around the country by both parties.
The letters note that “who you vote for is your secret. But whether or not you vote is public record.”
“Many organizations monitor turnout in your neighborhood and are disappointed by the inconsistent voting of many of your neighbors,” the letter reads.
It goes on to say that “We will be reviewing the … official voting records after the upcoming election to determine whether you joined your neighbors who voted in 2014. If you do not vote this year, we will be interested to hear why not.”
Peter Kauffmann, a spokesman for the state Democrats, blamed the tactic that one tabloid termed “creepy” as a “nationwide Democratic response to traditional Republican voter suppression efforts.”
New York Republican Party spokesman David Laska said the state’s GOP has not adopted similar tactics and that the letters “are beyond the pale and inexcusable.”
“Something’s wrong in the Democratic Party if they’re resorting to subtle threats to New York’s hardworking taxpayers to drive turnout,” he said.