Your Voice, Your Vote
More Than A Sticker: The Significance of “I Voted” in 2018
From high school seniors to undocumented immigrants across America, people have more incentive than ever to vote at midterms this Tuesday.
In 2016, voting turnout for youth ages 18 to 29 increased by 1.1 percent, making this group the only age group with an increased voting turnout.
“Midterm voting makes a huge impact on who is in the legislature,” Menlo senior, Vivian Liu, stated. “We often think of the presidential election as the important election, but House and Senate elections actually determine a lot about what a president can and cannot do and also other legislation.”
An anonymous resident and voter of Chicago, Illinois, offered a potential reason for the increase in people voting.
“[More people are voting now] because of [political] divisions… and because of polarized social media,” the Chicago resident explained.
Another key factor influencing midterms is the strong controversy surrounding immigration in America.
“There is a major issue with immigrants’ voices not being heard today,” Sherla Alberola, an immigrant from Chile, stated.
President Donald Trump portrayed his detest of the 14th Amendment at a Missouri rally this Thursday. The elimination of this ruling would affect the American citizenship of over four million children.
“To integrate and represent all the nations’ various cultures,” Alberola described, “immigrants must vote and let their voices be heard.”
Despite holding concern for specific political issues, many believe that voting will simply not have a direct or strong impact on their community.
“Especially at this time… people are just complaining… and thinking that [voting] isn’t going to affect them,” Susan Reynolds, a voter and judge of election in Chicago, Illinois, elaborated. “But it really does.”
Teenagers who recently earned the right to vote are excited to vote for changes that they want to see in American government.
“This is one of the most crucial election in our lifetime,” Aaron Raubvogel, a political science major at American University, said. “The fate of the entire world lies in our hands, as the next officials we elect on Tuesday have the ability to enact policy relating to climate change, gun control, health care, and a multitude of other issues that will affect the US for decades to come.”
Women earned the right to vote less than 100 years ago in 1920, yet only 63.3% of women in America exercised that right in 2016.
“You’ve got to vote if you want to have a voice,” the Chicago resident emphasized.
Even though people in the US remain uncertain about the effects and importance of voting, elections inevitably affect their future and the future of America.
“Hopefully Tuesday will show that [voting] really does count,” Reynolds said vehemently. “I think it’ll be a wake up call for a lot of people.”