Did you Vote in your Primary Election if not why not

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posted on Sep, 14 2006 @ 02:03 PM
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We had our primary here this week and the turn out was rather low which made me wonder, so I did some research on US voting trends and was amazed how few actually vote so I thought I would ask;

Are You a registered voter (assuming you have reached the required age)?

If not why Not?

Be honest now because the demographics will surprise you.

If you are a registered voter did you vote? Again if not why not?

Just for the record the highest percentage ever reached was in 1960 (60%) for the Kennedy Nixon Election and the 2nd highest turnout was 2004 which was 55.3%

National Voter Turnout in Federal Elections: 1960–2004

Note the trend in the chart election turnouts are lower during off year elections versus a Presidential election.

OK now lets look at International voting Italy has the highest at 92.5%

Zambia has the lowest at 40.5

Note the US has only 48.3%


Now in all fairness it should be noted that some countries unlike the US require voting by law that could explain their higher percentages.. It should also be noted that even though required by law not all turn out for elections and the fines are not always enforced either.

That brings me to another question; Do you think voting should be required by law in the US If not why not?

I think it should but I am only one person.

Now you will want to know did I vote in our Primary. No I did not because when you vote in a primary here you are required to vote a straight ticket, In other words if you are Republican you have to vote Republican all the way and the same applies to all parties, which I feel is wrong, because I prefer to vote for the individuals not who they are aligned with.

Ok I will end with that and see what kind of responses I get to my questions. If there are only few there obviously is no need to fill the board with one or two very long posts from one person which many do not like to see.




posted on Sep, 14 2006 @ 02:40 PM
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I mostly agree with you.

It's hugely important to vote in your primary elections. It's really your only chance to get a reasonable and intelligent candidate on the ballot. Normally, the only people who drag themselves up to the primaries are the True Believers -- the hard-core faithful who police their respective parties and make sure everyone marches in lockstep. You know, the whack-jobs.
It's up to us more levelheaded people to even out the playing field a bit, and try to get someone who's at least a little independent-minded into position.

As far as being legally required to vote, I've gotta part company with you on that one. From a practical standpoint, it'd be hard to enforce. From a philosophical standpoint, it's kind of repugnant. The idea of being legally required to do anything, except for paying taxes and sitting on a jury, is distinctly un-American, and probably unproductive to boot. At that point, a real American, being ordered to vote, would cheerfully march into the voting booth and write-in the goofiest candidates he could think of. At any rate, personally speaking, I prefer that the stupid and/or uninformed not vote anyhow.

But that's just me.

Baack



posted on Sep, 14 2006 @ 05:17 PM
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Originally posted by shots
If you are a registered voter did you vote? Again if not why not?


I am a registered voter, but unless I pick an arbitrary political party to 'belong' to, I'm not permitted to vote in the primary. And I do not belong -- nor do I wish to belong to a political party.




posted on Sep, 14 2006 @ 06:07 PM
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I am a registered Independent, therefore, I cannot vote in primary elections.



posted on Sep, 14 2006 @ 06:16 PM
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I voted in the primaries and I know that you need to be under a political party to do it.

I don't like the idea but is a necessary evil if you want to vote.



posted on Sep, 14 2006 @ 06:37 PM
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Originally posted by GradyPhilpott
I am a registered Independent, therefore, I cannot vote in primary elections.


Well you can vote if you want to vote for an independent, but I get what you mean. You like me prefer not too. I am registered as Republican (Gasp) yeah I know that is the way the mop flops but I will not vote in any election where I have to vote a straight ticket simply because there may be others I prefer be they independent or Dems.



posted on Sep, 14 2006 @ 06:53 PM
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I could vote for an independent, if one was on the ballot, but it is unlikely that I would vote for an Independent candidate. I want someone with a track record and those would more than likely be either Democrat or Republican. I'm just not going to plant myself in either camp. I trust niether.



posted on Sep, 14 2006 @ 07:21 PM
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Originally posted by GradyPhilpott
I want someone with a track record and those would more than likely be either Democrat or Republican. I'm just not going to plant myself in either camp. I trust niether.


I agree with you there for sure. Now to add just a little more fuel to the fire if you will allow me to show some of the demographics.




U.S. Voter Turnout Up in 2004, Census Bureau Reports

Sixty-four percent of U.S. citizens age 18 and over voted in the 2004 presidential election, up from 60 percent in 2000, the U.S. Census Bureau reported today. Tables from a November survey also show that of 197 million citizens, 72 percent (142 million) reported they were registered to vote. Among those registered, 89 percent (126 million) said they voted. In the 2000 election, 70 percent of citizens were registered; and among them, 86 percent voted.

Other highlights from the Voting and Registration in the Election of November 2004 online tables pertaining to the voting-age citizen population:

In 2004, turnout rates for citizens were 67 percent for non-Hispanic whites, 60 percent for blacks, 44 percent for Asians and 47 percent for Hispanics (of any race). These rates were higher than the previous presidential election by 5 percentage points for non-Hispanic whites and 3 points for blacks. By contrast, the voting rates for Asian and Hispanic citizens did not change. These data pertain to those who identified themselves as being of a single race.


  • Minnesota had the highest citizen-voting rate at 79 percent, and North Dakota the highest citizen-registration rate at 89 percent.



  • Citizens age 65 and older had the highest registration rate (79 percent) while those age 18 to 24 had the lowest (58 percent). The youngest group also had the lowest voting rate (47 percent), while those age 45 and older had the highest turnout (about 70 percent). (See Table 1.



  • Among citizens, turnout was higher for women (65 percent) than for men (62 percent). The turnout rate for people with a bachelor’s degree or higher (80 percent) was greater than the rate for people whose highest level of educational attainment was a high school diploma (56 percent).



  • Seventy-three percent of veteran citizens cast ballots, compared with 63 percent of their nonveteran counterparts. (See Table 1.




Note that MN and ND have very high voting percentages as compared to Southern states with a higher percentage of older ages i.e. FL, CA, AZ or anyother traditional snowbird states. Kind of makes one wonder why the voting rates in those states are not higher then the two Northern heartland states huh?

Edit to add. Also note that those with a higher education also have a higher percentage rate. In addition the older one gets the more likely they are to vote according to the stats. Makes one Wonder why that is and why younger individuals do not vote?



[edit on 9/14/2006 by shots]



posted on Sep, 14 2006 @ 07:29 PM
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I guess I could be labeled a RINO and I always vote in all elections, from school board to bond issues to national elections; but in general I still feel like the bumpersticker says "if voting really made any difference; it would be illegal."

I didn't always feel this way, but the longer I stay on ATS, the more I believe the bumpersticker. Still, hope springs eternal!



posted on Sep, 14 2006 @ 07:32 PM
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We had our primary back on September 5. I voted, of course, but our turn-out was abysmal - "What election?." Just remember that some areas have universal elections or universal issues where any party registration can vote - my state, Florida, happens to have closed general primaries though.

edit - I often wonder, however, if a very very large group of people could/would/do register for the party they don't support just to help elect a person that could not possibly win against their favorite - anyone else ever ponder such?

[edit on 14-9-2006 by AlphaHumana]



posted on Sep, 14 2006 @ 07:38 PM
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No, I have'nt vote, I am old enough to, but I registered August 29, and voting is on September 16 (I think), and being as it will not have been 30 days or more since I registered, I can't vote in them.

Honestly, I wish I could have, there are some candidates I really like,
including a Korean woman and an arab man, who would fit in nicely
here on ATS. Oh and a black guy who wants more money spent on
Space exploration, he probably would have gotten my vote.


I was'nt asked which party I belong to when I registered either,
so I figure that gives me free reign to vote fo whomever I choose.


On a side note, why is'nt the only being able to vote for your party
candidates a bigger issue?

I'm sure that's got to be unconstiutional.



posted on Sep, 14 2006 @ 07:42 PM
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Hrm, I guess I was typing my edit while you were typing your post - that should be the reason why you can only vote for people in your own party. Also, they didn't ask for your party affiliation when you registered to vote?! Do you live in the United States?



posted on Sep, 14 2006 @ 07:50 PM
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Yep, I live in the state of Washington.

And I think you typed both your post and your edit while I typed
mine, since I did'nt see yours when I originally started, so your
much faster than me.



posted on Sep, 14 2006 @ 07:59 PM
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I am a registered voter and I vote every opportunity I get. I hate people who dont bother voting yet sit on blogs and whine and cry about the president or other elected officials *AHEM!*. put up or shut up I say.



posted on Sep, 14 2006 @ 08:09 PM
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Iori_Komei, that's odd that you were not asked your party affiliation when you registered to vote. In the two states I helped people register party affiliation was definitely asked - this was a few years ago, but I fail to see the value of primary elections if people are not clear on which party they support!



posted on Sep, 14 2006 @ 08:11 PM
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Originally posted by AlphaHumana
Iori_Komei, that's odd that you were not asked your party affiliation when you registered to vote. In the two states I helped people register party affiliation was definitely asked - this was a few years ago, but I fail to see the value of primary elections if people are not clear on which party they support!


Yep, it is odd, I did'nt think of that at the time either, and I think
there suppose to in this state.
Oh well, I'm not complaining.

Anyways, I don't think you should have to vote for someone just
because your registered in the party, I think people should vote
based on who they want to win, not which party.



posted on Sep, 14 2006 @ 08:19 PM
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Originally posted by AlphaHumana
Iori_Komei, that's odd that you were not asked your party affiliation when you registered to vote.


They never asked me which party I belonged to when I registered and never have. All they do is post a notice that you must vote along a one party line or your ballot will be null and void i.e. if you vote for Ind, Rep dem all on one ballot.


I used to be a Dem when I worked but as I got older I changed and I never told them I changed. I wonder if that has something to do with certain states?

Frankly what bothers me more then anything is the fact that younger voters do not vote.



posted on Sep, 14 2006 @ 08:29 PM
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Oh, I forgot to answer something in your original posts shots..



That brings me to another question; Do you think voting should be required by law in the US If not why not?


Yes, I think it should be required by law, but only as long as you
can vote for anyone, and not just from a certain party.

Fine people $100USD for everytime they don't vote, and you'll
see a rise in the numbers.

[edit on 9/14/2006 by iori_komei]



posted on Sep, 14 2006 @ 08:39 PM
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Originally posted by iori_komei
Yes, I think it should be required by law, but only as long as you
can vote for anyone, and not just from a certain party.


I had hoped that someone from one of the countries that have compulsory voting would jump in and mention what they think of that issue one way or another. There are several mentioned in my first link




Source

Compulsory Voting: Is voting a right or a responsibility? There are democracies who swing both ways. Requiring citizens to vote is not a new idea, although it has never been put into practice in the United States. The first country to insist that its citizens vote was Belgium, introducing mandatory voting laws in 1892. It is interesting to note that Australia, a nation that is often compared in frontier spirit to the United States, has had compulsory voting since 1924.

Some nations have ceased to require that citizens vote but Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Singapore, Switzerland, Uruguay and others have the laws on the books — and enforce them. Penalties range from fines to disfranchisement for repeat offenders.



posted on Sep, 14 2006 @ 08:42 PM
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Originally posted by shots

Originally posted by AlphaHumana
Iori_Komei, that's odd that you were not asked your party affiliation when you registered to vote.


They never asked me which party I belonged to when I registered and never have. All they do is post a notice that you must vote along a one party line or your ballot will be null and void i.e. if you vote for Ind, Rep dem all on one ballot.

I used to be a Dem when I worked but as I got older I changed and I never told them I changed. I wonder if that has something to do with certain states?


Wow, it must have something to do with states... I imagine your voter registration card doesn't have a party affiliation box then, either?

As far as people being fined for not voting... I'm 100% against that. If you're not informed enough to make a decision, you shouldn't be voting. However, if we had a national no-work holiday for voting, I'm sure the country would turn back around the liberal-centrist hurdle and become slightly conservative - it'd then be more than just students, house-wives, and retirees that vote!





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