Sunday, October 9, 2016


Non-voting In America:
1. Why do you think there is a lower voter turnout in the United States compared to other industrialized nations? Explain.
At most, the United States gets a 50-60% voter turnout; this is significantly lower than every other industrialized nation in the West. There are many possible reasons as to why this happens. For example, we do not impose penalties to those that don’t vote. Some places fine people that don’t show up/vote, thus forcing their citizens to participate.

2. What are some barriers that cause the lower voter turnout in the U.S.? Explain.
Barriers such as registration, long ballots, and ballot fatigue are the main causes of this low voter turnout. If registration were to be eased or eliminated, the turnout would increase by about 9%. More people are registered to vote, but they don’t, thus causing the percent of people voting to decrease. Long ballots are a mixture of candidates, offices, and propositions; people are not interested in knowing all the issues, which allows for the decrease in turnout. Lastly, another reason is ballot fatigue. Too many ballots at once can push people into not voting because it’s too much work.

Rise Of The American Electorate:
1. What historical changes have impacted our voter turnout? Explain.
The addition of the 19th, 15th, and the 26th amendments called for the rise of the American electorate. It allowed African Americans, women, and 18-21 year olds to vote. Although this increased the population of those allowed to vote, it didn’t necessarily increase voter turnout. For example, most of the 18-21 year olds did not vote at all.

2. What are some factors that affect voting behavior? Explain.
Factors such as geography, the coattail effect, realigning elections, party affiliation, and the media affect voting behavior. For example, the solid south was a Democratic stronghold, until it shifted to a Republican stronghold. The region in which they live in greatly affect whose side they are on and who they vote for. In addition to geography, the media also affects voting behavior. The way elections and candidates are portrayed on the news or social media can change people’s votes as well as thoughts on the elections.

Who Participates In American Politics:
1. What are some characteristics of likely voters in American Politics? Explain.
Many factors such as as education level, income, and age play a large role in who participates in politics. The higher the education level or income a person has, the more likely they will be to vote in general. In addition, the older you are increases the probability of you voting.

Reflection Questions:
1. The media covers both Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump as "horrible" candidates. Does this explain why so many people are undecided this close to election day?

You know you love us. Xoxo, Government Girls.
(Sharon Kwon)

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