Editorial: Freedom to vote shouldn’t be ignored


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While having a government that has been molded to fit the needs of Americans, it only counts as the peoples voice when everyone is speaking. This is not a democracy if not everyone is voting.

Editorial Board

“Democracy: a form of government in which people choose leaders by voting.” That is Merriam-Webster’s definition of democracy. While having a government that has been molded to fit the needs of Americans, it only counts as the people’s voices when everyone is speaking.

It is not a democracy if no one votes. 

On the night of Nov. 4, people will be gathered around television and radios to listen to the outcome of the midterm elections. There will be some people who will be happy with the results of the elections, and there will be some people who will be discouraged. There will also be a handful of people who do not have opinions either way. But at the end of the day Iowa will have chosen who it wants to represent our state.

This country is based on votes. We vote for representatives who we feel have similar ideals to our own — people who can represent us on, in this case, national, state and local levels. Without our vote, the ideals we want will not be represented.

That being said, voting is something that is expected of us. To say that our vote does not matter is throw away our constitutional right.

In 2012, the number of college-aged students that voted was down to 45 percent from 51 percent in 2008. That drop may not seem like a big deal, but the number of voters in our age group, and who we vote for, affects the number of electoral college votes because college-age voters make up for 21 percent of the U.S. electoral body, according to CIRCLE.

If all students had the mindset that their votes didn’t matter, then the U.S. would lose 21 percent of voters. That is enough votes to sway an election.

Part of what makes voting so important is it will instill voting habits at a young age so that people will continue to vote in later elections. Communities with large populations of voters will receive more attention from politicians and people running for office than from places that have fewer voters.

The government knows who is voting and keeps track of those people. Voters are people who care about the outcome of the country and have opinions on certain issues. America relies on the voting community to ensure that the government runs smoothly.

Without voters, we are not a democracy. Without voters, we are not a nation that runs on the values of the constituents that live here, and we are not a country that will fight for the rights of the American people.

Voting is the most important act we can ever do. It is something that is expected of us. People in the United States are given the freedom to chose what officials they want to represent them, and it is expected that people will exercise their freedoms. Voters are the people that keep this country from crumbling, and without a vote the entire dynamic of our nation could shift. Without voters, this is no longer a democratic nation.