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by Alysha Biemolt, The Borgen Project

bigstock-american-votes-concept-man-ho-138881381The ability to vote allows citizens to say their opinion and choice on a variety of issues. In the American political system, voting allows registered citizens to cast their choice for the political leader that they believe can accurately make the choices that will better the country.

However, there are thousands upon thousands of individuals who have the ability to vote, and yet do not. Here is a list of ten reasons why voting is important:

  1. The Millennial generation accounts for one-third of the electorate.
  2. Less than 50 percent of eligible young voters ages 18 to 29 cast a vote in 2012.
  3. 19 percent of all votes cast in 2012 came from young voters.
  4. In 2012, 4 percent more young women voted than young men.
  5. Young voters are more likely to support issues such as legalizing same sex marriage, supporting a pathway to citizenship for immigrants and legalizing abortion than other age demographics.
  6. 40 percent of millennials identify as non-white, making them the most diverse voting generation in history.
  7. In most communities, the turnout for voting is less than 50 percent.
  8. Every vote matters. There have been several cases in U.S. history where this has been seen. A New Hampshire Senate race was decided by two votes out of 223,363 in 1974. A Massachusetts gubernatorial election was decided by two votes out of 102,066 in 1839. And the Alaskan congressional race was decided by a single vote out of 10,035 cast in 2008.
  9. Through voting you have the opportunity to influence the government
  10. In most state and national elections, you need to be registered to vote anywhere from 10-27 days before the actual election. That is why it’s important to regularly check if you are eligible to vote in your district.

In all, voting is a constitutional right and privilege that Americans have. It’s best to make use of that right instead of squandering it and disregarding what our Founders stood for.