New app allows consumers to bring politics to their pocketbooks
2nd VoteFor consumers looking to get more involved and engaged beyond Election Day, there is now an app for that.
Called 2nd vote, the app provides consumers with information about which causes companies, brands and nonprofits support through donations to direct causes or lobbying group. The app was officially unveiled at the Family Research Council’s Values Voter Summit in Washington, D.C., this weekend and with 4,000 downloads already, is sure to be a success.
“Our second vote is being used for issues that we would never support on our own,” 2nd Vote Executive Director Chris Walker told Red Alert Politics. “…The idea is very simple. Your first vote is at the ballot box, but you have a second vote every day with your wallet and you spend it every day. It’s time to start spending your second vote the same way you would treat your first vote: with education, information and backing those very ideals you vote for on Election Day.”
2nd Vote boasts a team of researchers who scour public filings, databases and disclosure forms from a host of companies to determine what causes they support — ones the consumer may not be aware of.
Upon downloading the app, which is available across all platforms including Apple, Kindle and Android, consumers can view scores given to different companies from Banana Republic to 7/11. There are different industries for users to browse including food and beverage, gas and energy, banking, and apparel and accessories. Once a user clicks on a company, they can view the score 2nd Vote has given it on a scale of 1, being actively liberal, to 10, being actively conservative, based on its activities and donations to outside groups like Planned Parenthood.
Scoring is based on five categories: Second Amendment, environment, marriage, pro-life and corporate cronyism. 2nd Vote currently has more than 1,000 scores for 400 companies and is growing every day, with hopes to add a “Made in the U.S.A.” category soon.
“This is an opportunity for conservative to be engaged in the political process every day,” Walker said. “…This is something where conservatives can use their second vote and make it matter every day. Too often, conservatives get together and spend their money without thinking where their money goes. This is a chance for conservatives to start thinking about that in a very real manner.
“Too many conservatives go to the ballot box on Election Day and feel that they’ve done their duty and that’s all they can do. We’re providing an avenue, an opportunity for them to do a lot more because you have a vote on Election Day but you have a vote every day, and people should be taking that vote just as seriously as they take their first vote. …Their second vote is engaging every day and it’s time conservatives stop funding organizations and groups that are actively opposed to their issues and values every day.”
Though the app is designed to make voters with conservative values more aware of where their money is going, Walker said it could easily help educate those on the Left, too. But contrary to the app Buycott, which alerts users to products funded by the Koch Brothers, 2nd Vote is a way to get people engaged beyond Election Day.
“That silent speaking with your wallet, speaking with your voice, speaking with your pocketbook will enable tremendous, will yield tremendous results for conservatives once they start thinking about it on a regular basis,” Walker said. “This is all about activity and action on a daily basis.”
And consumers may be surprised to learn just where their money is going, too, Walker said.
“This should give people the ability to affect the change they want to see in the companies they like.”
By Melissa Quinn /// October 12, 2013