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Justin Timberlake Risks Jail Time to Cast a Ballot, And More Celebs Who Are Voting Early

For the record, Justin Timberlake is NOT going to jail. But he most definitely did cast an early ballot this year. And you should, too. 

Following in the steps of President Barack Obama, Timberlake flew from Los Angeles to Memphis to cast his ballot yesterday. The controversy came when he took a voting selfie (attention, young voters — this is not allowed), and posted it to his Instagram account.

It has since been taken down.

Justin Timberlake Instagram.pngA screenshot of Justin Timberlake's Instagram post before it was taken down.

A new Tennessee law prohibits using mobile phones to take pictures inside the voting booth, which apparently JT was unaware of. 

“We hope this encourages more people than ever to vote,” Tennessee Secretary of State Tre Hargett said of the incident. “But Tennesseans should only use their phones inside polling locations for informational purposes to assist while voting.” 

For what it's worth, the state law banning the selfie might itself be unconstitutional.

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There was speculation that Timberlake could face up to 30 days jail time after the District Attorney’s office released a statement that it was investigating election-law violations. 

But on Tuesday evening District Attorney General Amy Weirich cleared the air: “No one in our office is currently investigating this matter nor will we be using our limited resources to do so.”

Timberlake is not the only celebrity to publicize his early vote on social media. 

Singer Sara Bareilles posted this mean-mugging Instagram pic. 

No filter, just voting. #ROCKTHEVOTE

A photo posted by Sara Bareilles (@sarabareilles) on

Katy Perry, who in August tried to vote naked at the California primary — also not allowed, apparently — decked herself out in an Americana outfit to cast her early ballot this morning. 

Celebrities from Lil’ John to Aziz Ansari have released videos urging voters to cast a ballot. 

The Clinton campaign has enlisted several high-profile musicians — Miley Cyrus, J-Lo, and Bon Jovi among them — to help #RockTheVote. The Trump campaign has touted the support of several celebrities as well, including Stephen Baldwin, Charlie Sheen, and Tila Tequila.

Even Nick Offerman, comedian and actor from the series "Parks and Rec," relayed a message from his Ron Swanson alter-ego on Twitter. 

As of Sunday morning, around 6 million Americans have already voted. Celebrities are playing their role in ensuring that many more do so before November 8. 

Global Citizen wants to help people get out to the polls. In the early voting states of Ohio and Florida, we’re hosting block parties.  


Voting is a basic democratic right, and it’s important to make sure you’re ready to go to the polls when voting opens in your state. If you’re not registered, you can register here. And if you have friends who aren’t, share the word with them. Learn your state’s laws and get registered — every vote counts.