What Happened When Instagram Taylor Swift Got Political

Just days before the voter registration deadline in states across the country,  a Taylor Swift Instagram post had an important message for the pop star’s 112 million followers.

Beneath a black-and-white Polaroid-style photo, the singer-songwriter wrote about the upcoming midterm elections in the United States.

Addressing Tennessee’s Senate race, Swift condemned Republican Representative Marsha Blackburn (more on that later) and said she is supporting former Democratic Governor Phil Bredesen.

While she discussed the candidates and their platforms in her caption, we don’t think Swift’s primary motive was to tell people how to vote.

Rather, her overarching message was to just get out and vote.

On Instagram, Taylor Swift Encourages Fans To Vote

In particular, her caption shouted out younger Taylor Swift followers.

“So many intelligent, thoughtful, self-possessed people have turned 18 in the past two years and now have the right and privilege to make their vote count,” read Taylor Swift’s Instagram caption (@taylorswift). “But first you need to register, which is quick and easy to do.”

It was an uncharacteristic move by the 28-year-old pop star who stayed noticeably silent—to much criticism—during the 2016 presidential election.

“In the past I’ve been reluctant to publicly voice my political opinions,” she wrote. “But due to several events in my life and in the world in the past two years, I feel very differently about that now.”

We’ve noticed Swift opening up and sharing more of her political views in recent years. She’s commented on issues such as sexual harassment and gun violence.

But, this viral Taylor Swift Instagram post takes things to the next level.

And, we are SO here for it.

Did the Taylor Swift Instagram Post Cause A Voter Registration Surge?

Within the first 48 hours after Taylor Swift’s Instagram post went up, Vote.org tallied 102,000 new registrations by people under 30.

Let’s compare that figure to the number of American ages 30 and up who registered in the same 48-hour time period: just 64, 000 people.

Now, there’s no way of knowing what exactly caused that spike, but we’ll bet our next 100 followers it had something to do with the singer calling her “Swifties” to take action.

It’s a powerful caption coupled with a powerful photo (the exact recipe for Instagram success).

Swift, dressed in a casual flannel and with simple makeup, is approaching her followers like a friend.

This isn’t a glamorous superstar shouting down from a pedestal.

This is a person you like and trust.

Are we sensing a touch of vulnerability from one of the most powerful celebrities in the world?

The photo supports her message directing fans to vote. Swift wouldn’t ask if it wasn’t really important.

Digging Taylor Swift’s vintage photo vibe? With our helpful guide, you’ll learn how to choose the right Instagram filters for your photos!

View this post on Instagram

I’m writing this post about the upcoming midterm elections on November 6th, in which I’ll be voting in the state of Tennessee. In the past I’ve been reluctant to publicly voice my political opinions, but due to several events in my life and in the world in the past two years, I feel very differently about that now. I always have and always will cast my vote based on which candidate will protect and fight for the human rights I believe we all deserve in this country. I believe in the fight for LGBTQ rights, and that any form of discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender is WRONG. I believe that the systemic racism we still see in this country towards people of color is terrifying, sickening and prevalent. I cannot vote for someone who will not be willing to fight for dignity for ALL Americans, no matter their skin color, gender or who they love. Running for Senate in the state of Tennessee is a woman named Marsha Blackburn. As much as I have in the past and would like to continue voting for women in office, I cannot support Marsha Blackburn. Her voting record in Congress appalls and terrifies me. She voted against equal pay for women. She voted against the Reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act, which attempts to protect women from domestic violence, stalking, and date rape. She believes businesses have a right to refuse service to gay couples. She also believes they should not have the right to marry. These are not MY Tennessee values. I will be voting for Phil Bredesen for Senate and Jim Cooper for House of Representatives. Please, please educate yourself on the candidates running in your state and vote based on who most closely represents your values. For a lot of us, we may never find a candidate or party with whom we agree 100% on every issue, but we have to vote anyway. So many intelligent, thoughtful, self-possessed people have turned 18 in the past two years and now have the right and privilege to make their vote count. But first you need to register, which is quick and easy to do. October 9th is the LAST DAY to register to vote in the state of TN. Go to vote.org and you can find all the info. Happy Voting! 🗳😃🌈

A post shared by Taylor Swift (@taylorswift) on

Piggybacking on her Instagram post, Swift gave a similar message to her fans at the American Music Awards later that week.

“You know what else is voted on by the people?” Swift said in reference to the award show. “It is the midterm elections on November 6. Get out and vote. I love you guys.”

Old Taylor can’t come to the phone right now…

We think political Taylor might be here to stay!

Want to write compelling captions like Taylor Swift? Check out our six helpful tips for writing good Instagram captions!

Taylor Swift Instagram Post Criticizes Tennessee’s Republican Candidate

Taylor Swift’s Instagram caption emphasized the importance of educating yourself on the issues as well as the individuals running for office.

“Please, please educate yourself on the candidates … and vote based on who most closely represents your values,” she wrote.

As a voter, Swift said she wants candidates who will protect and fight for human rights. She’s especially passionate about LBGTQ rights and racial equality.

“I cannot vote for someone who will not be willing to fight for dignity for ALL Americans, no matter their skin color, gender or who they love,” Swift said.

In her Instagram caption, Swift slammed the Republican Senate nominee, Marsha Blackburn.

“As much as I have in the past and would like to continue voting for women in office, I cannot support Marsha Blackburn,” Swift wrote. “Her voting record in Congress appalls and terrifies me.”

Taylor Swift Instagram Post Details Blackburn’s Voting Record

The pop star, who has obviously done her homework, went on to detail Blackburn’s voting record.

Since being elected as the Congresswoman for Tennessee’s 7th Congressional District in 2002, Blackburn has:

  • Voted against equal pay for women
  • Voted against the Reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act
    • Supported a Republican alternative that lacked discrimination protections based on sexual orientation and gender identity
  • Said she believes businesses have the right to refuse service to homosexual couples
  • Said she believes gays should not have the right to marry

Swift said she can’t support Blackburn’s beliefs and must go with the better choice.

“These are not MY Tennessee values,” she wrote. ” For a lot of us, we may never find a candidate or party with whom we agree 100% on every issue, but we have to vote anyway.”

Instead of Blackburn, Taylor Swift’s Instagram post announced she will vote for former Democratic Governor Phil Bredesen.

She’s also supporting a Democratic candidate for the House of Representatives.

Fans React To Taylor Swift’s Instagram Post

When asked what he thought of Taylor Swift’s Instagram post, President Donald Trump said he likes the singer’s music “about 25 percent less now.”

Whatever that means.

Like President Trump, other conservatives have voiced their disappointment with Swift’s vocal support for Democrats.

““It’s official. Taylor doesn’t want fans that are Republicans,” tweeted 22-year-old Luke Johnson, who’s username is @fearlessswifty9. “I feel totally betrayed. She only cares for her liberal fans. I’m done with this fandom and I’m done with Taylor Swift. I’m heartbroken.”

But, Taylor Swift’s followers and fans on the left couldn’t be happier.

“I can’t even explain how happy I am that Taylor stood up for PoC (people of color),” tweeted 21-year-old Natalie Johnson, who’s username is @beyourswift. “Like I used to feel so unwelcome in this fandom in previous eras. but it’s gotten so much more diverse and I love it. And Taylor stood up for us. She used her voice which is what so many of us wanted. I love her sm (so much).”

During the 2016 presidential election, many people took Swift’s silence as support for then-Candidate Donald Trump.

White supremacists embraced her and went as far as to call her their “Aryan Goddess.”

Since her viral Instagram post, Swift has taken some heat from white nationalists.

While all that bad blood might scare some people away from making more political statement on social media, we know Taylor Swift will just shake it off.

Want to read more about your fave celebs on Instagram? Don’t miss our rundown of supermodel (and member of Taylor Swift’s squad) Gigi Hadid’s Instagram!

Do You Want Influence Like Taylor Swift’s Instagram?

Look what she made them do: Taylor Swift’s Instagram post almost certainly boosted voter registration among under-30s.

With 112 million dedicated followers, Taylor Swift’s Instagram profile is a powerful tool.

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By Alex

When she's not writing about the Gram, you can find Alex curled up with a book, reaching for another taco or watching anything (okay, everything) starring Winona Ryder. An avid traveler, she regularly posts photos of her life abroad in Mexico. If Alex could switch Instagram accounts with one celebrity, it would *hands down* be Chrissy Teigen.

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