Taylor Swift, newly minted champion of local politics, spoke directly to her fans on Instagram today, taking a moment to both encourage and defend young voters.
"I'm seeing a lot of underestimation of young voters and this new generation who now have the right to vote just in the last couple of years," Swift began, talking about Gen Z voters. "But these are people who grew up post-9/11, they grew up with school shooting drills at their schools. These are people who want to vote."
She went on to encourage her fans, which she's been doing for the past few weeks by posting their "#justvoted" photos on her Instagram story.
"It's not enough to just want change. It's not enough to just want to vote. You have to go and make change by voting," Swift explained in an Instagram story.
Last month, Swift made an uncharacteristic move when she endorsed former Tennessee governor Phil Bredesen in his Senate race over Marsha Blackburn, a Republican who has embraced President Donald Trump. Swift has posted about voting in the past, but she never specified her political affiliations; this post was her first endorsement of a candidate. Her support may have caused a surge in voter registration, with Vote.org reporting that 413,691 people registered to vote between October 7 (the day Swift posted) and October 11. A few of Swift's fans proudly tweeted they had registered in honor of Swift. Now, she's sharing photos of fans who have just voted. Welcome to the midterm effort to get the vote out, Taylor Swift (and your 112 million IG followers!).