Final push to register potential voters

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By Tami Hoey By Tami Hoey

PHOENIX -- At midnight, the chance to register to vote in the upcoming election closed, and one group was working to the very last minute to register voters.

Members of Promise Arizona were canvassing the neighborhoods, making their final push to get people to register to vote.

Volunteer Andrea Cano made her rounds walking the streets of south Phoenix, looking for any last minute potential voters to register.

Cano ran into a lot of empty homes, and people who were just reluctant to register. But she was committed to trying.

"Some people don't believe in it anymore because it's not going to make a change, so sometimes it's good to talk to them and explain to them," she said.

Promise Arizona also set up sites at locations across Phoenix to get people to register. At Central and Roeser, they convinced a teen to register for the first time.

"I turned 18 on Friday, and I guess the opportunity happened right now so I did it," said DeAnthony Smith.

The issues that are most important to him are education and the economy. "Education. Yes, that's high with me society needs education everywhere,” said Smith.

He said he hopes his vote can make a difference.

"Every vote counts as much as you say it doesn't, it really does," said Cano.

There are several key issues on everybody’s minds, and the organization hopes registering people to vote will make a difference in this year’s election.

“We know that our schools in Arizona have the lowest per pupil spending. We think that this legislature needs to make it a priority so that schools, parents and children have the resources they need," said Petra Falcon, director of Promise Arizona.

Teachers Margarito Casillas and Manuel Gavina agree.

"Every year they make promises about putting education first, and it never happens,” said Manuel Gavina, a math teacher at Whittier Elementary.

"I hope that they can put education as one of the top priorities. We're always ranked in the lowest rankings nationwide," said Margarito Casillas, teacher at Andrada Polytech.

They hope people will get out and vote for whom they think will actually make a difference.

“At least make an effort not to just win the election and say okay, I’m here, I’m sorry, we're going to have to cut it anyways,’” said Gavina.

Cano said some people don’t believe in voting anymore because they don’t think it will make a difference, but she said she hopes people realize that's not true. "Every vote counts. As much as you say it doesn't, it really does," she says.