(Non-Partisan) Should voting be compulsory for registered US citizens?

IMA SOL MAN

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I think that required voting is NOT a good idea.

All this talk of educational requirements, and test taking is a bit off base too.

No doubt we have an uninformed populace. I too am guilty of being uninformed. This election cycle, we had to elect our school board. I didn't know a single one. My daughter made the decision for me. She knew the history of some of them.

Even our state level politicians, didn't advertise much, and I went to a trusted colleague who is very politically involved, and asked him... who am I voting for?

I do get a lot of my information about national politicians from the news stations. Unfortunately I have to watch more than one station to get a somewhat balanced view.

There aught to be a requirement that political speech should be required to be TRUTHFUL.

The concept that a person running for office can make up any lie and tell it often enough, with enough conviction that people believe him and elect him to office based on a series of lies, is absurd! Oh and that it is allowed as his First Amendment Right.

Just look at all of the lies that George Santos told. He is still in office!
Poppy, you and I did kind of the same thing.

Kid went to a town hall type event, where the candidates introduced themselves and told a little about themselves and their "planks", so to speak. Kid took notes, and brought them home, and gave us a report. Well, Kid's notes were a little difficult to decipher, and Kid's memory isn't the best, but, I kinda counted on "the Kid report" for my local races intel, plus some stuff I came across on my own.
 

IMA SOL MAN

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In Belgium, this is the case, if I am correct. The counterargument is that this way, people who have no clue about what's happening in the world will go to vote. Unfortunately, these are perhaps the individuals who are awake but just want nothing to do with politics, and as a result, we get a skewed election outcome that doesn't reflect what the citizens actually want.

Then there are the non-voters because they believe that no one, absolutely no one, is trustworthy in politics.
My American Government teacher in high school, told the class that if they didn't know about the candidates or issues, DON'T VOTE, LEAVE THE ELECTION TO INFORMED VOTERS. I agree with that, but I think if it was required by law, people would make themselves informed. Okay, that may be a bit naive, I admit. But a less than 12% turnout?! Come on! I bet they have a better percentage turnout in the 3rd world, developing countries! And here the USA is supposed to be the best example of freedom and a democratic republic in the world. :awman::wtf:
 

bykfixer

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If a person is running for re-election to legislature there's a public record on how they voted on legislation. When they're trying to get elected for the first time it's much more difficult to predict how they'll vote on same.

I used to work for the gubment and it was a great way to know how local politicians act. I knew enough to vote to throw the bums out every time. Example was one such council person voted to pass a law banning watering lawns one summer during a serious drought. A permit inspector saw said council person was watering their lush green lawn. Turns out the council passed an amendment that same summer that "restoring a lawn" was allowed. And the council person who got caught was allowed to continue to "restore" the lawn. The council person had a job that paid about $85k but lived in a $2 million water front house. That person is still on council in that town.
 

jtr1962

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But a less than 12% turnout?! Come on! I bet they have a better percentage turnout in the 3rd world, developing countries! And here the USA is supposed to be the best example of freedom and a democratic republic in the world. :awman::wtf:
The low turnout may have to do with the process itself of running for office. It weeds out the best candidates who don't want to deal with all the BS and mudslinging. Instead, we get do-nothing lifetime political hacks. Even term limits doesn't fix this. They just run for another office when their term limits are reached. End result is uninspiring people running. Look at next year's Presidential election. The choice is like choosing between dog sh*t and cat sh*t. Voting shouldn't be about picking the lesser of two evils, but that's what it's devolved to in this country.

It's often been said the best leaders are the ones who don't really want the job, but are pushed into it kicking and screaming by their friends and associates. Our system encourages the opposite. They want the job, but usually for all the wrong reasons.
 

Guitar Guy

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Well, as a registered Independent, I've done a LOT of looking into and reading about the politics of BOTH major political parties, and their mostly untraceable foreign dark money influences ... and could write an essay here, but it would likely just get deleted, like my climate hoax video did. We're supposed to stay away from politics on the forum so I'll be a good boy and just stick with the one liner I posted on the previous page. 😐
 

kaichu dento

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The low turnout may have to do with the process itself of running for office. It weeds out the best candidates who don't want to deal with all the BS and mudslinging. Instead, we get do-nothing lifetime political hacks.
We agree on this point totally. All too often the best candidates who would actually try to serve their constituency are politically assassinated or just don't have the desire to put up with the mud slinging.
Look at next year's Presidential election.
Yes, there's an individual doing his best to completely destroy this country and the rest of the world at the same time who may end up running against another who never accepted his salary while in office, did his best to serve this country and is in the middle of a political assassination that's been going on for the last eight years now.
To top it off, none of the perpetraitors have ever been indicted, or will be either.
 

kaichu dento

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Politics - One of the very few positions that can make its holder wealthy way beyond its salary.
Yes, and for anyone with any genuine curiosity, do some research on the many individuals who started politics with very little money and turned it around by being in office, contrasting with the almost non-existent few who actually lost money as a result.
 

bykfixer

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There's one person in congress who shares the same last name as a famous Colonel who has never had a job outside of the gubment yet has 5 mansions. He speaks of global warming and drives a Ferarri. He easily gets re-elected every 6 years. He had a real good shot as a presidential candidate until his party sabotaged a primary and knee capped him.
 

pnwoutdoors

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Should registered US citizens be required by law to vote?

Compulsory speech? In America? Absolutely not, for that reason alone.

Not that such a thing would actually fix things. As others have suggested, one has to actually think and act intelligently, in order for any such action to make a good difference. Else, it'd only be a change of numbers voting. Fairly pointless, I'd say, having one without the other.

Of course, having a less than well educated populace having a greater percentage of any vote won't do anybody any favors either. This whole "least common denominator" approach to the dumbing-down and effective indoctrination of America's "students" serves no good purpose. Readin', Writin' and 'Rithmetic, as a focus. What a concept. Sure ain't what it used to be.
 
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blah9

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One change I would like is to move the system to online voting only. If you want good participation, make it as easy as possible. As for any concerns about security, we already have a security apparatus for financial transactions which largely works very well. No reason it can't be applied to voting.
There are some interesting ideas in your post. I just want to chime in about the online voting though. I would also love to have a convenient way to vote online.

However, I have read a bit from cybersecurity experts about how difficult that is to achieve. If I recall correctly, I think there are a couple of main issues, among others: 1) the votes must be essentially anonymous, making verification and trust an issue, and 2) we want to disallow coercion.

Regarding #1, people won't trust that their votes are recorded correctly unless they can somehow verify that they are in the system correctly. But since voting is anonymous, there can't really be a way to log in and verify that your vote was correctly recorded, right? If that was possible then people could tie your vote back to you, which brings us to #2. If you can log in and verify your vote, you can then show that to someone else, thereby enabling people to force you to vote a certain way, whether through financial incentive or otherwise. In our current system there is no way to prove to someone which way you voted, so coercion can't really work.

Anyway I may not have all the details right, but I just really found those discussions interesting. Assuming we could solve all the other security/privacy issues, these two issues make implementation of online voting very challenging if not impossible.
 

pnwoutdoors

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Regarding #1, people won't trust that their votes are recorded correctly unless they can somehow verify that they are in the system correctly. But since voting is anonymous, there can't really be a way to log in and verify that your vote was correctly recorded, right?

I don't imagine it'd be that tough to have a unique ID number printed on every single ballot, where the voter tears off the "personal" copy of that ID off that ballot before leaving. So long as that specific ballot's ID# is known only to that voter, and it doesn't get entered into the system when the voter is checking-in with ID. Then, that unique number can be used to connect anonymously to a database via anonymized browser to do a simple query on the data sitting in the database reflecting the official results.

About the only pain and suffering there'd be would be with people who don't have their own computer/phone device. They could simply use a connection at their local public library, or at any "internet cafe" type spot.

Of course, that assumes that such a query would report from a copy of the same database that the official results are tabulated from, though that'd be hard to know during such access. We'd have it claimed, of course, but it'd be hard for the average Joe to confirm for a fact.

Combine that with an actual printed copy that gets filed with the National Archives, along with digital copies in a number of spots, as well as a customary audit report of any such election's results, for future validation. About as close as we'd get, I think. In short: can have anonymity, so long as a given ballot's ID# doesn't get tied to a specific person; and can have validation, so long as each person (along with audits and future posterity) can double-check.
 

blah9

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I don't imagine it'd be that tough to have a unique ID number printed on every single ballot, where the voter tears off the "personal" copy of that ID off that ballot before leaving. So long as that specific ballot's ID# is known only to that voter, and it doesn't get entered into the system when the voter is checking-in with ID. Then, that unique number can be used to connect anonymously to a database via anonymized browser to do a simple query on the data sitting in the database reflecting the official results.

About the only pain and suffering there'd be would be with people who don't have their own computer/phone device. They could simply use a connection at their local public library, or at any "internet cafe" type spot.

Of course, that assumes that such a query would report from a copy of the same database that the official results are tabulated from, though that'd be hard to know during such access. We'd have it claimed, of course, but it'd be hard for the average Joe to confirm for a fact.

Combine that with an actual printed copy that gets filed with the National Archives, along with digital copies in a number of spots, as well as a customary audit report of any such election's results, for future validation. About as close as we'd get, I think. In short: can have anonymity, so long as a given ballot's ID# doesn't get tied to a specific person; and can have validation, so long as each person (along with audits and future posterity) can double-check.
Yeah, something like that may work for verification. It doesn't solve #2, but maybe it's not such a big issue anyway?
 

jtr1962

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Yeah, something like that may work for verification. It doesn't solve #2, but maybe it's not such a big issue anyway?
I doubt it's a big issue. Besides, wouldn't a lot of this talk of having voter IDs if you vote in person present the same issue?

I'm confident any issues with online voting can be solved. Giving unique ballot IDs as suggested by pnwoutdoors would prevent the same person from voting twice.
 

blah9

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Yeah maybe that's the way to go after all. Certainly would be convenient.
 

jtr1962

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Yes, there's an individual doing his best to completely destroy this country and the rest of the world at the same time who may end up running against another who never accepted his salary while in office, did his best to serve this country and is in the middle of a political assassination that's been going on for the last eight years now.
To top it off, none of the perpetraitors have ever been indicted, or will be either.
That's an interesting take but having lived in this person's home city it's pretty telling that he didn't carry his home state either of the two times he ran. And NY has gone red several times in my lifetime. I know people who had business dealings with several of his organizations who were screwed over big time.

In all honesty, I wish two different people were running. The current choice stinks. If this is the best we can do as a country picking leaders then maybe the US doesn't deserve to last much longer.,
 

jtr1962

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+

$9,000,000,000 for 125,000 votes.

And if you bother to read the article you'll find this particular loan forgiveness is simply the government honoring the promises it made to those whom it said would have their loans forgiven after ten years in public service, or 20 years in income-based repayment. That was part of the terms the student and government agreed to when the loan was first made. The fact government had to be coerced into honoring a contract it made tells you all you need to know about how corrupt the student loan system is, with private corporations making bank by failing to honor contractual agreements in the promissory notes.

No news here. This isn't blanket loan forgiveness. It's simply forgiving the loans of those who were already legally entitled to have them forgiven based on laws passed years or decades ago. Nobody, including government, gets to unilaterally alter contracts in a way which disadvantages one of the parties.
 
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