Online Voting Issues

Great Essays
Only 4…..3% of all U.S. citizens 18 years or older voted in the 2014 midterm elections (File). Since voting is one of a citizen’s sole civic responsibilities for a representative democracy, it is striking that less than half of the voting aged populace engaged in the elector process? When trying to explain a citizen’s level of political activity and civic engagement, one must comprehend the factors involved at the individual level. Context matters. As a country containing a diverse populace with varying inter-cultural histories, the context will vary from person to person. One way to monitor voter turnout and make conjectures on propensity to engage is by analyzing demographic trends. What’s most noticeable is that the tendency to vote differs …show more content…
The United States was one of five countries that places the complete responsibility of getting registered on the individual (the other four are Bahamas, Belize, Burundi, and Mexico) (Rosenberg). What most other countries have a combination of communication between departments to keep up with voter data (e.g. the equivalent of Health and Human Services) and voter registration campaigns in public schools. The state of Oregon adopted a law where all unregistered yet eligible citizen who applies for or renews a driver’s license is registered. This law helped 51,558 people get registered. 129,162 people have been added to the rolls this year, which is in comparison to 2008 where the state only registered 85,362 people (Center For American Progress). Another success story for voter registration is the new online voter registration in Pennsylvania. Citizens are now able to register online rather than only in person or through the mail. More than 325,000 people signed up to vote or changed their registration since September: 172,000 did so online. That is nearly double from 186,000 this time in 2012 (Online Voter Registration Surges in …show more content…
However, voter fraud is practically non-existent. A comprehensive study found that there have only been 31 incidents of voter impersonation out of one billion ballots cast (Levit). However, these laws have substantial impacts on who turns out to vote. After controlling for other state laws that affect voter turnout, Voter Identification laws caused a substantial drop in turnout for minorities. The research suggested that these laws caused a drop in the Latino vote by 10.3%, and a 12.8% drop for multiracial Americans. It also increased the participation gap between whites and non-whites. For Latinos, the gap between whites is 5.3% in states that do not have strict Voter Identification laws. But for the states that do have strict voter identification laws, the gap is substantially higher at 11.9% (Levit). As these laws have such drastic effects on the outcome of underrepresented demographics’ voter turnout rate, and it is designed to combat a problem that has minimal effects on the electoral process, it is a logical choice to discontinue

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