A century ago, nominating a presidential ticket during political conventions was an arduous marathon. The Democrats opened their convention with 14 names in serious contention, while the Republicans had to whittle down their list from a dozen hopefuls.  

That era is long gone. In fact, suffragette Susan B. Anthony — who prevailed 100 years ago this summer in her long battle that won women the right to vote — would surely be amazed by the savvy marketing and virtual production techniques of the Democratic and Republican national conventions that just wrapped up. 

Yet, despite the huge procedural differences between 1920 and 2020, Anthony would still recognize and endorse the basic message of all political conventions: VOTE.    

Our right to cast a ballot is the most precious currency of American citizenship. It drives our democracy and our future.

As has been the case in the past several elections … and perhaps even more so this year as we are in the middle of the greatest public health crisis of our lifetimes … health care is front-and-center. That’s why it is more important than ever that we turn out to vote and make clear to our elected officials and candidates what’s at stake for our continued ability to serve patients and advance health in America.

The AHA does not take sides in the presidential election; instead, we are a resource for all candidates on health policy issues. However, when it comes to AHAPAC and congressional races — given their close relationships with our members — we work with you and the state hospital associations to support candidates who understand the vital role hospitals and health systems play in their communities.

Throughout this election year, as a matter of simply good citizenship, our We Care, We Vote initiative has provided you a variety of tools to prepare for the election. And we are getting ready to roll out soon new resources to help you during the home stretch, including a toolkit that you can use Sept. 22 in conjunction with National Voter Registration Day. We’ll also be partnering with state hospital associations to run ads on various media platforms encouraging health care stakeholders to register to vote and cast their ballot on Nov. 3.

This year, more than ever, we must ensure that our hospitals, health systems and amazing front-line caregivers have everything they need to continue to save lives, perform miracles and advance health … as well to participate in a precious democratic process.

The best way to make that happen? Cast a vote. 

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