We have come a long way from a time when only white, affluent, property owning males could vote. In terms of ‘voting rights’ it was a gradual expansion of the vote, which slowly began to expand to all whites, individuals once labeled slaves or ‘aliens’, African Americans, military personal and women. To vote in the United States, no longer do you need to pass a literacy test, but you must be a U.S citizen and at least 18 years old on Election Day. In addition, some states also require various periods of residency before voting is permitted. Furthermore some states restrict felons or those mentally incompetent to vote. In Massachusetts, for the first time, there was Early Voting. During this period, October 24th to November 4th, registered voters were allowed to cast their ballots. During this period of Early voting, I along with a group of classmates had the engaging opportunity to be an exit pollster. We decided to canvas much of the Boston area, with hopes of a ranging demographic. This hands-on experience, working with a team in carrying out the exit poll, allowed for a greater insight to the dynamics of election administration, a deeper understanding on the rights of voters and voter turn out, technique for attaining a random sample, the role of the interviewer and importance of survey design.
Early voting bore the intention of increasing access to the ballot, reducing the long lines on Election Day and overall, improving the experience. It is imperative; in turn that
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Most change can be caused by people or something with significant value. Occasionally people forget that change can also be caused by pieces of paper. The Voting Rights Act of 1965 was a law passed that primarily gave African Americans the right to vote without having to take any sort of literacy tests. African Americans were widely ignored in voting rights because they were forced to take literacy tests to be eligible to vote. Having this event in our nation’s civil rights movement was a landmark that allowed the other half of our nation’s voice to be heard. “The Voting Rights Act itself has been called the single most effective piece of civil rights legislation ever passed by Congress.”(Laney 65)
Being able to cast my first vote in the 21st century is a privilege. My generation needs to accept their patriotic responsibility and vote because many reforms are needed in order to carry us into the new millennium. Voting reforms are necessary to inspire political participation for other modifications and adjustments needed in areas such as health care, education, and Social Security, all which we as young people will face in the future. Participation in elections is necessary to facilitate and enable progress, but our present day system of voting is expiring by frustrated Americans.
Despite what many might think, the voting rights act of 1965 is well known across hundreds of nations all over the world. The voting rights act of 1965 has been around for several centuries and has a very important meaning in the lives of many. This act was signed into law by President Lyndon Johnson on August 6, 1965. He aimed to overcome legal barriers at the state and local levels that prevented African Americans from exercising their right to vote under the 15th amendment to the Constitution of the United States. It is a landmark piece of federal legislation that prohibits this racial discrimination. This document is just as big and important as the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence. It would be safe to assume that voting rights act of 1965 is going to be around for a long time and will have an enormous impact on the lives of many people in times to come. The voting acts of 1965 created positive and negative changes for America. But, why was this law created, when was it put into effect, and what effect did it have on the U.S.?
Voting has not always been as easy as it is today. It is interesting to examine how far America has progressed in its process of allowing different types of people to be able to vote. Voting was once aimed at a particular group of people, which were white males that owned their own property. Today, most people over the age of eighteen can vote, except for the mentally incompetent or people who have been convicted of major felonies in some states. The decline of voter participation has always been a debate in the public arena. According to McDonald and Popkin, it is “the most important, most familiar, most analyzed, and most conjectured trend in recent American political history (2001, 963)” The question is, how important is voter
As citizens, all Americans are given certain unalienable rights- the right to Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness. America has not always lived up to these standards of equality for all citizens. In fact, some U.S. citizens have and continue to go through quite a lot of trouble to gain equality, specifically in the voting rights department.
Up until the year 1870 African Americans could not vote in any election in American. (U.S. Voting Rights). In the past America has been making a lot of changes in our voting system’s equality. In the present, legally African Americans have the same rights as a white man does. In the future the rights will not get any better or worse. Throughout history The African American voting rights have improved to the present day and will stay the same in the near future.
The special election process is not fair and therefore not adequate, because it is more difficult for working-class citizens and minority voters to participate in the election. Currently, elections take place on weekdays during working times. This decreases voter turnout, as many people are unable to leave work to go vote. Furthermore, this disproportionately affects working-class citizens and people who earn hourly wages. Voter ID laws, while practical, further decrease voter turnout because people who do not own adequate identification or who are not aware of the need for identification are unable to vote. Next, the lack of widespread voting centers makes it more difficult for voters to reach a voting center, especially working-class citizens and urban dwellers, many of whom do not own cars or other forms of transportation. Lastly, the language barrier also makes it increasingly difficult for minorities to participate in the voting process, decreasing voter
The Framers of the Constitution purposely left the power to set suffrage qualifications to each State. Suffrage means the right to vote. Franchise is synonym for the right to vote. The electorate is all of the people entitled to vote in given election. The right to vote was limited to white males that owned property in America in 1789 when Constitution can into effect. Today, the size of the American electorate is greater than 230 million people. Nearly all citizens at least 18 years of age can qualify to vote. The history of American suffrage since 1789 has been marked by two long term trends. The first growing federal control over suffrage and second the elimination of voting restrictions.
Voting is an essential right that has been given to citizens since it allows the society to become as close as it could to an ideal democracy - a nation governed by its people. Some people think that voting is the most important right of all. "The right to vote is the most basic right, without which all others are meaningless, American president Lyndon Johnson once said. By means of voting, individuals have a direct say in different social and political issues.
At a City Hall meeting in Cleveland, Ohio when asked about the topic of mandatory voting laws (Jackson 2015), President Obama stated, “If everybody voted, then it would completely change the political map in this country.” (Stephanopoulos 2015 p5) (Evidence: Testimony) He is right, if everyone voted the political map in the country would be completely different---and not for the better. Compulsory voting can potentially cause the nation 's true political viewpoints to be misrepresented, thus hindering political progression, by making voters feel obligated to choose candidates that may not represent their ideas and forcing the politically disengaged to select random ballots.
In this essay, I would like to discuss the major obstacles to voting, recent changes to overcome voting barriers and the political influence of changed rules. Low turnout in the U.S. reflects that there are obstacles for people to voting and changes to overcome these obstacles may also bring new problems to different social groups. I will elaborate on these aspects in the following parts.
If one were to look at the voting history as of late in America you would surely find information on the Florida catastrophe in 2000. The problem with our voting system today is in the technology being used; many demographic groups find our current systems confusing and hard to use. As voters step into the polling places this election year many will be voting through new devices some even sporting “touch screen” technology and we can only hope that the new technology is understood and accepted.
Voter turnout, as well as election results, depend upon and are effected by several different factors. Everything from family status to beliefs about abortion can determine how a person will vote. In my presentation, however, I focused on three aspects that effect voter turnout and elections. I found, in my research, that a voter's age, sex and party identification greatly factor into how a person will cast his or her vote.
Young adults in current times have grown up with many rights that have not always been considered a right but instead a privilege. Voting is one of these rights that was once only considered a privilege, eligible for a particular gender and ethnicity. For many years this meant that the only group of people allowed to vote were white males. Today, things are different and everyone has the choice to vote after they reach the age of eighteen. The right to vote is a powerful right that we must take advantage of because not every country is lucky enough to have a say in their government. Today, in America we have the opportunity to decide if we would like to vote or not. Many Americans take pride in this right as it is considered a civic duty that has not always been eligible to everyone.
First of all, there is little to no evidence that internet voting increases voter turnout. In the past few decades, there has been a downward trend in the turnout of youth voters. In the emergence, of Internet voting, experts theorized that this new type of voting would appeal to millennial voter’s due to their perceived familiarity with the internet. However, through the Independent Panel on Internet Voting (BC), no substantial evidence can be used to support the argument the Internet Voting will increase voter turnout.