Australia mandating vote

In fact, there are at least 26 countries that currently employ some form of compulsory voting.While giving a speech just this past March, President Obama expressed his support for mandatory voting. In the most recent 2014 midterm elections voter turnout rates were at their lowest levels since 1942, with less than 37% of the eligible population making it to the polls.While it seems pretty unlikely right now that compulsory voting will be adopted in the United States, at least on a federal level, it is a policy to keep in mind as America continues striving towards a better democracy.

Australia serves as a prime example of such an effect.

Prior to Australia’s implementation of compulsory voting in 1924, the voter rate had sunk to around 47% of registered voters.

An example of this shift can be seen in Australia’s usage of mobile polling facilities in hospitals, nursing homes, prisons and remote Aboriginal communities to ensure that those who are unable to get to a polling location can still vote. One of the major arguments given by those against compulsory voting is that it leads to a greater number of uninformed voters, noting that those who choose not vote are generally less educated on political issues than those who choose to vote.

Of course, the range of arguments supporting compulsory voting is matched by a plethora of reasons why the U. Critics argue that the resulting surplus of politically ignorant voters has three main negative consequences: Compulsory voting presents some ethical challenges.

“If the full range of voters actually voted,” Eric Liu of TIME explains “our political leaders, who are exquisitely attuned followers, would go where the votes are: away from the extremes.”Lastly, some people assert that mandatory voting will ultimately help make it easier for people to vote.

If a state legally compels its citizenry to vote, the burden shifts from the individual to the state to ensure that everyone has the means to be able to take part in elections.

Many people argue that it infringes upon individual liberty by denying people the ability to choose not to vote.

While it is true that ballots may include a “none of the above” option (though, in practice, typically do not), the act of voting itself may be seen as “endorsing” the current politicians and political system, an endorsement that some citizens may not want to make.

The idea is that making voting mandatory alters civics norms, so that eventually it is simply expected that everyone takes part in elections.

As is often highlighted by supporters of the practice, in a democracy where politicians are supposed to represent the interests of all citizens, it is especially important that as much of the population votes as possible.

This legislation is a direct response to a rising electoral crisis.

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