The number of active voters in America continuously declines, especially among young people between the ages of 18 and 25. According to the Pew Research Center, in the 2016 elections, only 56% of eligible voters participated in the election. Since the U.S. is a democratic state, the declining number of voters occurs because there are some substantial barriers, in the way the voting system is designed or in the awareness of the citizens on the importance of the elections, which can be fixed by changing the way the voters can cast a ballot. This is a significant issue because the declining number of young people who vote means that they are not interested in politics and, therefore, will not participate in this process and get a representation in the governmental agencies (Ginsberg 50; FairVote). Moreover, since the voters do not take part in the elections of a President, they are most likely reluctant to participate in resolving community-level issues, making the involvement of the people minimal.
President Obama suggested making voting mandatory and requiring people to pay a fine if they choose not to vote can resolve this issue. While this idea has some potential, an evident drawback is that the government would need to create an agency and employ people who would track the voters and impose fines on those who choose not to vote. Moreover, this would mean that some voters would make their decision not based on their views and beliefs but solely because they want to avoid a fine. On the other hand, some suggest paying people $50 for a vote to encourage their participation. While this can help interest some individuals in voting, the money required to cover the expenses would have to come from taxes. As a result, the tax burden would increase, making it more challenging for the citizens.
Ginsberg, Benjamin. We the People: An Introduction to American Politics. W. W. Norton & Company, 2019.
FairVote. “Voter Turnaround.” FairVote.
Pew Research Center. “In Past Elections, U.S. Trailed Most Developed Countries in Voter Turnout.” Pew, Nov. 3, 2022.