Top 3 Reasons You Should Vote in Local and State Elections
In the U.S., elections are conducted once every four years, yet most people focus on presidential vote more than other kinds. The Pew Research Center found that one in six Americans who confessed to voting during the 2014 mid-term elections did not vote. The local polls show a dire state as most people neglect them entirely, yet they make the most significant impact on citizens. People should participate in presidential and local elections. Here are three reasons they should vote:
1) Local Policies affect Citizens Everyday
While the federal government amends laws that relate to rates and taxes, health bills, and education reforms, some of these issues affect the majority of the citizens at a local level. For example, the year 2015 saw Florida’s Governor Rick Scott enforce a law that required women to consult a doctor and wait for twenty-four hours before terminating a pregnancy. The law put many women in an awkward position, making it almost impossible for them to receive appropriate care.
Since the local government enforces such laws, citizens are tasked with determining who they want to elect locally. You want to participate in electing leaders who can make decisions that serve the needs of the citizens in your area. Note that presidents barely have any control over the decisions or laws made by states regarding funding or provision of social amenities.
Presidential power depends on whether the national leader’s party controls the House or Senate. Additionally, the size of the parties’ majority makes a significant difference. For example, a seventy-vote supermajority in the Senate can empower or cripple the president more decisively than a simple majority.
2) Representative Democracy through Large Numbers
As at the year 2014, up to three-quarters of the American public supported the move to increase the minimum wage rate to $ 10.10 per hour. However, the Congress remains adamant in implementing the policy. While a majority of the citizens barely factor in economic concerns when voting, people who have vested interest pour lots of resources into lobbying against the implementation of such policies.
Additionally, with most Americans supporting the minimum wage policy barely voting during the preliminary congressional elections, it becomes difficult to support progressive policies. Groups supporting such laws include low-income earners, people of color, and young individuals who turn out in low numbers during elections.
In the 2012 election, for example, up to 80% of people earning $ 75,000 or higher voter compared to a sad 60% of citizens with a yearly income of $50,000 or less. The consequences of lack of participation in congressional races resonate for years- until the next election. After the 2008 election, Republications represented the majority, which crippled the former president’s bill from implementation.
3) A Margin determines local Elections
While a single vote does not determine the results of an election, it dramatically impacts the margins at the local level. For instance, in 2010, a tax levy vote in the state of Ohio was passed by two votes while Mississippi saw its incumbent Democrat Blaine Eaton re-elected because he had a garnered a greater margin during a tie between him and Mark Tullos.
It shows that the local vote has a more significant impact on local polls than federal ones. Thus, if the candidate you loathe is destined to win by a landslide, voting can affect his margin of victory and cause him to lose the election.
Margins also significantly impact the outcome of national elections. The 2016 elections make a perfect example where Hillary Clinton garnered the nation’s popular vote by a cool 2.85 million votes. However, since she lost the popular votes in the states of Wisconsin by 22000 votes, Michigan by 10,000 and Pennsylvania by 46,000 to Donald Trump, she lost the elections. Simply put, a margin of 79,000 votes decided the Electoral College.
The bottom line is that voting is necessary at the national and local levels. Every vote counts and has long-term ramifications on the policies made on both levels. Even small margins of votes make a dramatic difference as illustrated in the discussion. Every citizen has an opportunity to determine the kind of laws he wants to be passed and implemented in his state, city, and country.