This Non-Profit Sends Free Pizza to Voters Waiting in Long Lines on Election Day
If you want to make a donation this election season to help support your love of democracy but are worried about getting caught up in partisan politics, here’s a cause that almost certainly bridges any divide: pizza.
Launched last year, Pizza to the Polls is a nonprofit that accepts donations online into a “pizza fund.” Then, on Election Day, people can report a long line at any polling place across the country along with visual evidence from somewhere like Twitter or Instagram. When the Pizza to the Polls team deems that a line is so long that hungry voters might decide to leave, they use the online resource SliceLife to find a nearby pizza place and have some pies sent to the polls.
“Americans are hungry for democracy and are turning out in record numbers to vote. But that means long lines and sometimes empty stomachs, which might discourage these brave patriots from performing their civic duty,” the group’s website states. “Fortunately Pizza to the Polls is here to deliver the one thing that pairs so perfectly with freedom: piping hot 'za. Send us reports of long lines and we'll send in the delicious reinforcements.”
“By the end of the election in 2016, we had raised over $40,000 and sent over 2,000 pizzas across the country,” explained one of the founders, Noah Manger, during a recent interview with NPR. Pizza to the Polls’ website says they’ve raised nearly $60,000 in total—hitting cities like Miami, Chicago, and Cincinnati—with any leftover money rolling over until the next election. Currently, the group has about $8,000 in savings for this year’s midterm, though interest patrons can give at any time, and in any amount, at the website Polls.pizza. (Yes, “.pizza” is a real URL.)
As far as who gets the pizzas, well, that appears to lean a bit more towards anarchy than democracy. “We send pizzas anywhere there's a line and ask our delivery people to give them to anyone there: people in line, their kids, poll volunteers and staff, and anyone else hungry for a slice,” the group’s site states. However, they do stress that the decision of where to send pizzas is intended to be non-partisan. “Ain't nothing partisan about trying to make voting less of a drag,” they write—though don’t put it past the pundits to find a way.