In Praise of Low Voter Turnout

Topics: Democracy, Voter turnout, Elections Pages: 2 (715 words) Published: November 7, 2010
Charles Krauthammer’s article In Praise of Low Voter Turnout raises an important issue America faces as a democratic republic. The problem that is frequently addressed tends to be that voter turnout is lower than most other democratic countries; however, in respect to the working population, being over 50% nationally is not nearly as poor as it would seem. In the founding of the Constitution, it was assumed the general population would be far too uneducated to properly elect their representatives. From this unfortunately accurate presumption, came the Electoral College. The Electoral College is a gift from the founding fathers that has, in turn, counteracted the impact of low voter turnout. It is more important that an elected official is properly chosen than that more people cast a vote. The informed population should be the ones casting the vote, because if the time has not been taken to learn about the candidates what is the point in voting? Voting along party lines or for racial or gender reasons is absurd and reinforces the problem George Washington alluded to after serving for two terms as president. George Washington warned about the threat political parties posed to democracy. Today, the competition is much needed for government but the problem lies in voting along party lines because this is purely an uneducated vote. It is not analyzing candidate by candidate what they could bring to Congress or as a President; rather it is assuming all candidates within a party are cookie cutter. It is nothing short of naïve to think all candidates of a party are the same. Each politician has had different positions on different issues ranging from staunch to moderate and some have even altered their opinion throughout their career. Without the proper knowledge, a vote cast is a vote wasted. Some notable solutions to low voter turnout were as Spain does, to make Election Day a paid holiday or to put Election Day on a weekend instead. Spain is a...
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