You’ve probably heard it said at least once that the upcoming election on November 6th is one of the most important elections you’ll ever participate in. These words aren’t just being thrown around for fun- during the midterm elections, 35 of the US Senate’s 100 seats will be up for grabs, and the 435 members of the US House of Representatives will be chosen. To put it simply, the outcome of this election and OUR decisions as voters could drastically affect what the rest of President Trump’s term looks like. In other words, the country needs your input.
If you don’t think you’ll show up to the polls on November 6th, you probably have a reason or two. Luckily for you, whatever is standing in the way of you casting your vote probably has a simple solution. Here are a few common obstacles that people let stop them from voting- and why they shouldn’t.
“I’m not registered, and it seems complicated.”
It’s not! Visit vote.org for instructions on how to register in each individual state. Kansas allows online registration, which takes approximately two minutes.
- “I don’t have time that day to go vote.”
That’s ok! If you can’t ask off of work in advance, many places offer early voting. Visit your local courthouse’s website for possible early voting dates, or simply look around on campus. Many schools have designated places ON CAMPUS for early voting, making it even easier for students to vote without even getting in their car.
- “Speaking of cars, I can’t get to the polls.”
Ask around and find out when your friends are heading to the polls. After all, it’s even better to vote as a group! It’s highly likely that certain student organizations participate in carpooling to the polls or offer rides to voters or that your campus has resources to help you get there. Uber is even offering discounted rides to voters who need rides to their polling places on November 6th.
- “I don’t know anything about my candidates.”
There are multiple resources for that! You can easily create a personalized ballot online and read up on your local candidates, as well as get up to speed on what issues will be on your REAL ballot. You can even read submitted direct statements from local candidates about their specific plans, should they be elected. All in one place! Cool, huh?
- “I think that my vote won’t matter.”
Almost half of the United States population felt the same way in 2016. Imagine the turnout of that election if all of those uncast votes had gone towards candidates. One person who feels that their vote doesn’t matter can quickly become half of the country, and THAT matters. Do not assume that you are in the minority. When it comes to elections, a little apathy goes a long way, and the country needs your voice. Use it.
It’s okay to be confused about the process. It’s okay to have questions. It’s not okay to sit out from it altogether. There are no excuses.