Today I was filling up my car with gas and I heard a guy ask his friend, “Are you voting this year?”
I was so appalled that I almost interrupted their conversation, or inserted myself into it, to tell them that they have no excuse not to vote! For one, the state of Washington mails ballots to every registered voter, so “can’t make it to the polls” is not a valid excuse. My husband voted from a war zone, so you can vote from your house.
Secondly, I’m a firm believer that if you don’t like the way the country or state or city government is working, you have to vote. I don’t care your party affiliation, you can’t complain if you didn’t input your opinion in the basic right we have as citizens. If it doesn’t go your way, it sucks, but at least you let your opinion be known.
I think I have voted in every election since I turned 18. Including small local races. Yes, I am a political junkie, and if you follow me on Twitter, you can probably figure out my political leanings, but this isn’t about who you’re voting for. I won’t preach on why you should vote for a certain person, this is about getting your voice heard. Sure the electoral college is kinda a pain in the butt, and you may know what way your state will go, but what about your local Congressman? Honestly that person is a better resource if you ever need anything, be it an expedited passport or federal benefits. And they will do it whether you’re the same party as them or not. It’s part of their job. And all the budget issues in every state, and federally, are debated and voted on by representatives, so vote for that person.
I care so much about voting that it looks like I’ll be paying extra postage just to get my ballot in on time. See, I’m still registered at my home of record in Arizona. Growing up in Arizona politics I have a really strong tie to my home state. I live in a new Congressional district, and the state is a borderline battleground state, although not nearly as much as Ohio. BUT because I have a mail forward it’s been a hassle to deal with my local elections office to get my ballot to Washington. I’ve called 3 times and sent a letter. But it’s coming. And the moment I get the ballot, I’m filling it out and mailing it back, probably in a priority envelope. So yeah, I care about voting.
This country needs leaders that will work with one another, from the executive branch on down to city council. People with the best interests of the whole country at heart. So vote. Vote for who you think is best. Just don’t give me an excuse for not voting, with early voting in a lot of states, I have very little sympathy for you not figuring that out or taking the time on your way to work to go to your polling station. (For those displaced by Sandy or still without power, I hope the local elections department figure out some ways for people to vote, I really do, but restoring power, oil, and water is definitely a top priority.) The Internet is a great resource. So use it. And use the voice that you have as a citizen, that so many of our immigrants wait years to use.
Have you voted yet? Or are you going to straight to the polls?