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Increasing Voting Amongst the Younger Generation
Or How to get College Students to vote.
By Cj Patel, Brandon Kunkel, Jesse Higgs, & Jon Hankenhof
Out of all democratic countries, the U.S. has one of the lowest voter turnout rates.
According to A Global Report and Voter Turnout Report by Idea International the Australia has the highest voter to registration ratio for parliamentary elections at 94.5%, then Singapore with 93.5%, then Uzbekistan at 93.5%. The United States is 120 out of 169 countries with a 66.5% rate.
-López Pintor, Rafael, Maria Gratschew, and Kate Sullivan.
According to the 2010 US Census, approximately 49 percent of people ages 18-24 voted in the 2008 election whereas those around ages 25-34 had a 57% voter turnout rate.
“These numbers are better than years past but a 2010 study released by the Center for Information and Research on Civic Learning and Engagement showed that only 20.9 percent of eligible voters ages 18-29 actually voted in 2010”.
-"Will Voter Apathy Among Young People Be the Death of the Democratic Party In 2012?"
College Students have the lowest voting turnout by age. Within the last 8 years the percent for college students had dropped from 81% to 58%, roughly a 23% drop. Whereas those who are 65 years and older, have fluctuated within a few percentage points.
Seniors tend to vote more often because they see the value in government entitlements and the impact they have on politics in regards to social security and Medicare.
Ergo Politicians tend to vouch for these programs to win votes.
-“Why Older Citizens Are More Likely to Vote.”
"Young U.S. Voters' Turnout Intentions Lagging."
Add info here Brandon
-"Statistics by Country.“
So why do College Students not vote?
College Students feel as they have a lack of time: for example they have many more activities that will occupy their day. Whether it’s classes, doing homework, or cramming for exams, students are more focused on those things rather than remembering to send in an absentee ballot or going to register.
“The Solution to Voter Apathy.”
Some students have exams or midterms on election day, and by priority students place a higher emphasis on their grades than voting.
Many college students tend to have a lack of interest and a lack of knowledge, and often times they do not know what they actually have to do to vote.
"Why College Students Don'??t Vote-Some Anecdotes.“
Students interested in politics, registered, and those with strong party feelings and affiliations tend to vote more often.
How far a student is from home and how likely a student is to get to the polls.
- “The Solution to Voter Apathy.”
No National Holiday - working people and students have obstacles that make voting a burden
Partisanship and Representation – countries such as Germany have multiple parties and proportional representation and has a re (as opposed to Winner-takes-all system in the US).
No mandatory voting laws – Australia has 96% voter turnout due to mandatory voting laws while the US has no such laws but also 41% voter turnout
Long wait times for voting, inclement weather
Weak public transportation system
So why do College Students not vote?-Our Take
In my case, I don’t always even have time to eat dinner or lunch; I would rather being eating a box of Ramen than waiting in a line to vote and wasting time.
Students need more encouragement to vote.
Negative Campaigning doesn’t tend to influence voting opinions, rather it confuses students more often.
Why College Students?
UC has a student population of 42,421 (2011-2012) . Large population of potential voters who are the future of the country.
—"UC Facts, University of Cincinnati."
Even more, Ohio is a large swing state and the University of Cincinnati could be a major player in the election.
College students if voting can reframe the entire political atmosphere. The highest voting groups receive the most attention when it come to policy making. See Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid.
1.It’s their right—
these students have the ability to decide on those who run our country, and the strength of democracy relies on participation. In a world where many countries don’t have elections or give rights to people, especially suffrage, college students in our country should take advantage of what is offered to them.
2.Their vote matters—
even though students may feel voter apathy, recent history shows that some elections can be decided by a handful of votes especially locally, and sometimes even nationally, “hanging chad anyone?”
3. Decide the social agenda—
whether it is the death penalty, gay marriage, abortion, or any important matter; students can take it to the test in the ballot.
4. Economic Policies—
students can decide what economic policies that will shape their future. Currently more politicians support social security because seniors vote, however not all college students realize that there are rising education costs and student loan rates that affect them.
5. Foreign Policy—
Students can shape the foreign policy they want to see. It isn’t the politicians in Washington that are sent to fight and risk their lives, it’s often the young adults, the friends and family, \of college students that go.
10 reasons Why College Students should vote in a nutshell.
6. Environmental Issues—
Students can decide on the how to handle issues on the environmental, whether it is the impact, management, or protection, they can decide this with the ballot.
7. Important Voting Block—
The college vote can have a big impact on elections. They are many more younger adults than there are baby boomers, the only difference is that the boomers vote much more often and in larger numbers.
8. Student Needs get addressed with Student Votes—
Politicians take the initiative to support the ideas of the highest voter groups, ergo college students need to step up to get their needs addressed.
9. Concern for the next generation—
When voting in politicians, they can affect the policy that will come for generations, whether it is the laws that are carried out, or even Supreme Court Justices appointed by the President that students can help elect.
10. Honor Past Sacrifices—
Many peopled fought and died to secure these rights for all. Whether it was military members, suffrage activists, or Civil Rights leaders, these people fought hard to allow us the right to vote.
10 reasons Why College Students should vote in a nutshell (cont.)
Possible Solutions on UC’s Campus
Give a form of transport or closeness of a voting booth, like on campus.
Proximity to home makes a difference in whether a students votes or not. 85% of those living within 30 minutes said they voted, compared to 78% who were 1.5 to 2 hours away, and 75% of those were more than 2 hours away (“The Solution to Voter Apathy.”)
Set up voting booths on campus that way students don’t have a long distance to go vote, and are more inclined to vote because of the closeness of the voting location.
Allow students to take a day off classes so students are encouraged to vote. If the test drive was successful on campus, it could be encouraged to do this throughout the country.
Campus shuttle to voting locations for any student with UC ID.
Using UC ID as eligible voter ID.
Page on UC website discussing different candidates (including third party candidates) at different levels, for example president, senator, representative, and city council. This website may also have voting and registration information, links to debates
Possible Solutions on UC’s Campus (cont.)
Voting registration option when accepting admission to UC, allowing students to be registered before moving to campus and providing less stress for students.
Debate viewing events on campus. Bring candidates on Campus for rallies
Election day parties where students may get T-shirts and freebies if the vote.
Page on UC website discussing different candidates (including third party candidates) at different levels, for example president, senator, representative, and city council. This website may also have voting and registration information, links to debates,
Fehlen, Douglas. "10 Reasons Why College Students Should Vote." Education Portal. N.p., n.d. Web. 09 Oct. 2012.
López Pintor, Rafael, Maria Gratschew, and Kate Sullivan. Voter Turnout Rates from a Comparative Perspective. Publication. N.p.: n.p., n.d. Print.
"The Solution to Voter Apathy." : New University. N.p., n.d. Web. 08 Oct. 2012.
"Statistics by Country." Voter Turnout. N.p., n.d. Web. 09 Oct. 2012.
"UC Facts, University of Cincinnati." UC Facts, University of Cincinnati. N.p., n.d. Web. 09 Oct. 2012.
Works Cited Cont.
"Why College Students Don'??t Vote-Some Anecdotes." The Politikal Blog. N.p., n.d. Web. 09 Oct. 2012.
"Why Older Citizens Are More Likely to Vote." - US News and World Report. N.p., n.d. Web. 08 Oct. 2012.
"Will Voter Apathy Among Young People Be the Death of the Democratic Party In 2012?" Candor News. N.p., n.d. Web. 09 Oct. 2012.
"Young U.S. Voters' Turnout Intentions Lagging." Young U.S. Voters' Turnout Intentions Lagging. N.p., n.d. Web. 08 Oct. 2012.