WILLIAMSBURG, Va. — New reports predict a significant increase in voter turnout for the 18-34 age demographic in the wake of Republican gubernatorial candidate Ed Gillespie’s recent campaign promise to increase taxes on beer sales throughout the Commonwealth.
Gillespie revealed his plan this weekend during a “Get Out the Vote” rally, citing the rising popularity of craft beer and microbrews as an untapped source of tax revenue. “People are going to breweries over the weekends, spending massive amounts of their hard-earned money on expensive alcohol,” he stated. “Increasing the beer tax to $1 per gallon would be a huge gain that I plan to capitalize on.”
The tax hike would impact the cost of beer in retail stores and restaurants significantly, and millennials aren’t taking it lightly. Projected voter turnout for millennials has gone up 200% since Gillespie’s announcement.
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“I wasn’t sure if I was going to vote this year, but when I heard that Gillespie wants to put more taxes on booze, it was time to get serious,” Church Hill resident Roy Lehmans commented after seeing an ad for Gillespie that reiterated the proposed legislation. Lehmans now plans to vote Democratic in tomorrow’s election. “I’ll definitely be casting a vote for Ralph Nathan or whatever his name is.”
Jennifer Hyunh, a 24-year-old Fredericksburg native, also intends to participate in tomorrow’s election, despite being unaware of her current voter registration status. “I don’t know if I’m good to go for tomorrow, but I’m still going to show up and a find a way, damnit.”
In addition to the surge of millennials planning to vote against Gillespie, breweries around the state are expected to shut down on Election Day in an effort to encourage voter turnout. Abigail Foley, the public relations director for Hardywood Park Craft Brewery in Richmond, says an increased tax is not something the community can afford to suffer.
“We hope that all of our regulars who come and get day-drunk every Saturday will be out in full force at the polls tomorrow. This definitely isn’t a laughing matter since it would end up costing people tons more than usual when they come out to buy our Gingerbread stout.”
Wild Wolf Brewing Company in Nellysford issued a similar statement on their Facebook page: “If you’re reading this on Election Day and care about delicious beer, then get out there and VOTE AGAINST GILLESPIE!”
It has also been confirmed that, upon learning of the threatened beer tax, current Governor Terry McAuliffe immediately sped to his voting station and intends to camp out there until it opens on Election Day.