Why This Election Is So Important For You

Why This Election Is So Important For You

‘I Voted’ sticker on the black background.

By now you all should be aware that our nation-wide election is scheduled for Tuesday, Nov. 3. At the time of this writing, the United States has had more early voting than ever before, with 70 million votes cast by Oct. 28. Even though we have been warned that we aren’t likely to know who our next president will be until several days after the election (due to mail-in ballots being counted in several states), Nov. 3 is bound to be exciting.

Some are looking forward to knowing who our next president will be, whether it will be the democratic (or independent) challenger, or another four years for our incumbent president. Some are just looking forward to getting past all of the annoying election advertising. But it will all soon be over. What is important right now, however, is that everyone plays their part.

Why Your Vote Is Important

Young people historically are the least likely to show up at the ballot box. Studies have shown that voters age 18-29 are the demographic least likely to vote. In fact, a representation of 50 percent, even in a historical year like this one, by this age group is considered a phenomenal success.

Part of the reason for this is that Texas hasn’t been a swing state for decades. It has traditionally voted Republican since the 1960s. But this year is different. There is an opportunity for Texas to play a significant role is deciding not only who will be our next president, but who will be in our United States Senate. The difference in numbers between voting Republicans and registered Democrats in Texas is almost equal, so whoever can bring out the most voters is most likely to win the state.

Just think: your vote could make the difference whether your candidate goes to Washington or not. That’s a pretty good reason to stand in line and vote.

It’s Not Just the President

With all the headlines surrounding President Trump and Vice President Biden running for office, it’s easy to forget that other offices are in question as well. In fact, the United States Senate and the House of Representatives will be electing new members this November, as well as federal judges, county commissioners, mayors and school district representatives. Most of these seem incidental, but they are all important. It’s important to remember that almost ever elected official, including the president, started off by holding offices like these and that these people have a significant impact over your daily life. It’s important that you get involved, learn about their party platforms, and vote according to your conscience.

You can find pretty much all the information you need for voting online. If you live here locally (Johnson County), the website you want to go to is: https://www.johnsoncountytx.org/departments/elections-office . You can find voting locations, sample ballots and information about each political party there. If you aren’t registered in Johnson County, simply Google “Sample Ballot for [your county], [your state].” It’s pretty easy and straightforward.

The worst thing you can do is nothing. I’ve been really impressed with the massive turnout this year, because the more people who vote, the healthier our democracy stays. But as usual, the 18 to 29 year olds are lagging behind. You CAN make a difference. So get out there and VOTE.

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