There is a very popular yet understandable misconception in this country regarding the effects of citizen voting. Because of the misunderstanding of how the Electoral College works, voting fraud, as well as an abundance of political corruption within our government, many people are inclined to believe that their vote doesn't count when it comes to official governmental elections. In fact, there are very many people who make strong arguments to support that claim. But when we practice a little bit of critical thinking and objectivity while using an investigative thought process, then there are some things about our election processes that we notice that are just a little bit to undeniable.
When I think of who I was during my teenage years, I cringe. I was against gay marriage, disliked Obama, and didn't believe climate change. That's right, I was a Republican. Looking back on this I can't really blame myself. After all I was raised in a conservative religious home. Brainwashed by my conservative dad, I believed liberals were sissies and that Hillary Clinton was a demon. Sixteen year old me would be horrified to find out that twenty-three year old me voted for Hillary Clinton in the 2016 election.
Since before I was old enough to vote, I have been a conservative Republican. I worked Ronald Reagan's presidential campaign while still in high school doing everything from knocking on doors, working the phone bank, and compiling voter data. It was incredible. Equally important, it was a victory!
How should we make judgements?
The result of the 2017 UK General Election was really one of those wig-snatching moments. After David Cameron resigned, Theresa May took over as Prime Minister and a snap election was declared. Seeking a mandate of her own, the Prime Minister came out of the election not only losing seats, but losing her own edges, cheekily snatched by Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn. May's less "strong and stable" party (and scalp) had to then partner up with the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) to form a government.
The goal line defense by Republicans of Donald Trump is ripping apart one of our nation's most cherished means of self defense. The time tested construct of checks and balances is hanging in the balance.
“The abuse of buying and selling votes crept in and money began to play an important part in determining elections. Later on, this process of corruption spread to the law courts, and then to the army, and finally, the Republic was subjected to the rule of emperors.” - Plutarch
The arrival of 2018 has the nation at a crucial position in politics as issues from 2017 have yet to be resolved. Additionally, an opportunity has arisen for Americans to flex their power of the vote by turning their eyes towards gubernatorial elections as well as the seats in Congress that are up for re-election in 2018.
As a 16 year old, I do not yet have the right to vote; my voice cannot be heard and neither can the voices of over 1.5 million other 16-17 year olds. For now, we must make our voices heard in other ways. If these 1.5 million people had the vote available to them, this ‘coalition of chaos’ that is currently in power may not have had to have formed, putting the country in a far better position for the forthcoming Brexit negotiations. As a matter of fact, if these 16-17 year olds had access to the vote in the referendum, then the result may have differed from the one we see today.
Although many people believe the Electoral College is a place where people come together to elect the President, it is not. It is a procedure created by the Founding Fathers that is explained in the Constitution. It serves as a compromise between the congressional and popular votes for President. (National Archives and Records Administration, “What is the Electoral College?”).
It’s currently election season in 2017, so we’re not voting for a new president, and, save for New Jersey or Virginia, we won’t be voting for new governors either. 2017 is what’s considered an “off-year” meaning that the focus of this year’s elections is mainly local. That said, these “off-years” are not always the most popular or favorable time for people to go out and cast their ballots.
The British Labour party is calling for voting age to be reduced to 16.