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Voter registration drive nets media attention

Media interest in Liberty University’s campus-wide campaign to register student voters locally is gaining momentum.

The Carter Glass Mansion turned into a temporary news set on Tuesday afternoon as CBS television correspondent Thalia Assuras interviewed Chancellor Jerry Falwell Jr. for a segment to air on "The Early Show" on Tuesday, Oct. 7.

Falwell spoke earlier with a National Public Radio journalist based out of Washington, D.C. The segment is expected to air on NPR’s "Morning Edition" Tuesday, October 7. CNN also featured the initiative on its website.

Last week Falwell participated in a 15-minute live interview on XM Radio’s POTUS Channel 130.

Falwell said the questions posed by media outlets were straightforward and factual, tapping into why LU asked its students to vote and how the voter registration campaign could impact the election.

“Liberty is really breaking some new ground with this voter registration drive. Next time it may be dozens of colleges doing it,” Falwell said. “It’s getting a lot of attention.”

The Washington Post and The Associated Press are among high-profile media outlets that have contributed to the media interest.

More than 3,200 students submitted registration forms, and 20 students stepped up to help city workers process the paperwork.

Falwell first kicked off the voter registration campaign on Sept. 22, urging students to register and cast their ballots locally. Voter registration forms were distributed to on-campus students at hall meetings, and professors handed out forms to commuters.

Falwell told students that besides it being more convenient for them, voting in Lynchburg as a group will have a “much bigger impact than if your votes are just scattered across many different jurisdictions.”

“Local elections directly affect the amount of tuition you pay here at Liberty more than you realize,” he said.

To show its commitment to the voter campaign, LU is cancelling classes on Election Day and offering bus service to the polls. Two week ago, the Chancellor also sent out an email asking LU faculty and staff to vote.

“Liberty students have never been permitted to register locally in the past. The recent change in election law is giving Liberty University the chance to make history. Liberty University’s 11,000 students and 4,000 faculty and staff could cause Liberty to become known as the university that elected a president!” the email stated.

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