Rock The Vote is an American not-for-profit that urges youth to register and vote in elections. Founded in 1990, the organization got its original push from PSAs starring Madonna that were played heavily on MTV.
It appeared the same year as Madonna’s video for the song “Justify My Love” was banned for its sexual content, and two years before her explicit coffee table book, Sex, was published. The young, saucy and silly Madonna of 22 years ago seems ages away from the mature songstress today. (Who was recently booed in New Orleans for endorsing President Obama during a concert.) But the campaign was successful — by 1992, election polls that year showed a 20% increase in youth turnout over the 1988 election, ending a declining trend in young Americans’ democratic participation.
Here’s Madonna’s rather more involved sequel, produced for the 1992 presidential election:
There’s a nicely crated collection of celebrity Rock The Vote ads, including Coolio, Aerosmith and Miley Cyrus, on Buzzfeed.
Rock The Vote