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

jtr1962

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The US doesn't deserve to last much longer because you don't like your choices for President?

Dude, seriously.
In general because of the low quality of people running for leadership positions in all areas, and in both parties, not just President. I stopped voting years ago because of it. I figure it won't matter if my voice isn't heard, but at least by not voting I drastically decrease my chances of ever being called for jury duty. That's certainly a tangible benefit.

That's not even getting into the unelected leaders like CEOs, most of whom have the next quarter mentality which prevents seriously planning for the future. There's a dearth of leadership these days. The process itself turns off the people who might really do a great job.

On the flip side, it's often said people get the leadership they deserve. Maybe that's what's happening here.

Not limited to the US, either. Many other democracies are suffering the same fate.

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.
This is why I'd vote for the unicorn candidate who had to turn off his/her heat in the winter because they couldn't afford it, and has holes in their clothes and shoes. At least they have a clue how the proletariat lives. Bonus points if the same person is willing to forgo their salary. It's easy to work for a token $1 salary when you're rich like former NYC Mayor Bloomberg. It's a lot harder when you're poor to do the same, but it shows the ability to suffer along with the people you claim to represent.
 
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bykfixer

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In my state not that long ago (2017) the election of the state house resulted in a split 50/50 between the two parties. The tie breaker was in a district that through weird fate had a tie for the two candidates. The potential tie breaker vote (paper ballot) was tossed out because the person had colored the little circle for both candidates but slashed through one.

Now being that was not the first time it ever happened there was a rule in place where a board of election member drew one of the two names from a bowl. One party took the leadership after that.

So yeah every so often every single vote counts.
 

kaichu dento

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…If this is the best we can do as a country picking leaders then maybe the US doesn't deserve to last much longer.
If your opinions are the best we can get then maybe no one would deserve to last much longer.
Luckily it's not, so there is still hope, for another minute at least.
Nice of you (not) to guarantee that every conversation goes political.
 

jtr1962

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So yeah every so often every single vote counts.
I don't doubt it but my next question might be would it even matter in many elections? Seriously, often there's no compelling reason which jumps out to choose one person over another. If an election is that close probably most of the electorate felt the same. A coin toss might well be just as good as an election in such cases.

In cases where one candidate is really much better, they usually win by huge margins.
If your opinions are the best we can get then maybe no one would deserve to last much longer.
Luckily it's not, so there is still hope, for another minute at least.
Nice of you (not) to guarantee that every conversation goes political.
Hey, this thread by its very topic is political but I'm glad we can discuss this stuff now, at least within limits.

I actually have hope for us, but only if we can figure out a way to get the best people in charge. Hint-it's never anyone who really wants the job. That should be an automatic disqualification. Get some of the brilliant, quiet people who spent their lives just coming up with answers, never looking for any glory. Put a bunch of them in charge. Often the answers will present themselves by their own merits, instead of the petty, partisan bickering which passes for leadership these days.
 

M@elstrom

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I'm not sure mandatory voting would even be enforceable.
If the Government wants it, it'll happen... we have to turn out for all Local, State & Federal Elections, not sure how many donkey votes are a direct result, do they occur in the USA?


Another thing is quite a few people don't vote simply because they use voting records (among other things) to make lists of potential jurors. I personally think we should do away with compulsory jury duty.

Citizens in addition to rights have responsibilities, Jury Duty is one such responsibility, there are ways out of service if the requirements are too onerous.
 

jtr1962

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If the Government wants it, it'll happen... we have to turn out for all Local, State & Federal Elections, not sure how many donkey votes are a direct result, do they occur in the USA?
Called ranked-choice voting here in the USA. NYC uses it for some local elections but it's not common.
Citizens in addition to rights have responsibilities, Jury Duty is one such responsibility, there are ways out of service if the requirements are too onerous.
Don't know how it works in your country, but two really big issues with this so-called responsibility right now:

1) With all the civil litigation in the US, jury duty has morphed from what used to be perhaps a once in a lifetime thing into an annual ritual for many. Sure, if they actually pick you for a jury you're in the clear for the next four years. If not, you might get called again the next year. Besides that, it's one thing to have your life disrupted to decide about someone's freedom but most of the calls for jury duty are from civil court, not criminal court. Sorry, I shouldn't have to waste my time making decisions where only money is involved. Tort lawyers love to roll the dice and play the jury trial card in the hopes they'll get a big award for their client (and themselves) as most tort cases are contingency. Win the lawyer gets a percent, lose they get nothing.

If we made jury duty a once in a lifetime thing (i.e. go down when called, whether or not you're picked for a jury that's the last time you'll ever be called) most would find it palatable.

2) To be excused you usually have to show up the first day you're called to explain why to the judge. Kind of defeats the point. If it's a burden to serve it's also one to show up at all. For example, I'm caretaking for my mother. I can't leave her in the first place to go to court to explain to a judge that I can't serve. There's no way to simply go online and give reasons why you can't serve. Or better yet, a list where they don't send you a summons in the first place if you have a reason you can't serve, like caretaking, disability, age, infirmity, sole proprietorship, etc.

Another issue is the time of day. It might be easier for some people to serve if some courts convened outside of normal business hours but for the most part they don't. Then you have day/night people. Sorry, but my faculties aren't working well until late afternoons. I can't really make any important decisions in the context of a court where I might be fighting my own fatigue for most of the session.

Anyway, I never actually served on a jury, nor would I want to. I only got called once, but my number to go down didn't come up fortunately. I really think we should just follow most of the rest of the world and ditch jury duty. It's been horribly abused by lawyers, especially in the US.
 
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M@elstrom

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Called ranked-choice voting here in the USA. NYC uses it for some local elections but it's not common.

This is not dissimilar to our preferential voting system (used in all elections) which is in contrast to the first past the post used in Britain, as it seeks to achieve to most agreeable choice overall.

The "Donkey votes" I was referring to are ballots turned in usually with hand drawn images or commentary instead of candidate choices, voting is compulsory so elements of Society make such "protest votes" for being forced by Law to participate.


Don't know how it works in your country, but two really big issues with this so-called responsibility right now:

1) With all the civil litigation in the US, jury duty has morphed from what used to be perhaps a once in a lifetime thing into an annual ritual for many.

2) To be excused you usually have to show up the first day you're called to explain why to the judge. Kind of defeats the point. If it's a burden to serve it's also one to show up at all. For example, I'm caretaking for my mother. I can't leave her in the first place to go to court to explain to a judge that I can't serve. There's no way to simply go online and give reasons why you can't serve.

We have Jury notifications sent out via mail, reasons not to attend can be returned on the forms received, situations such as you have mentioned would be accepted without issue.
 

jabe1

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Our courts here are so busied with civil suits due to not needing to take personal responsibility unless compelled by law.
We are able to sue for damages due to our own ignorance and stupidity.
 

Lips

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Nobody, including government, gets to unilaterally alter contracts in a way which disadvantages one of the parties.

I believe Biden's previous blatant attempt to buy votes using tax dollars as a pay-offs for students that had loan debt, which was stopped by the SCOTUS. The justification was the HEROES Act of 2003, meant to provide loan relief for the Soldiers fighting in the current wars. Secretary of education Miguel Cardona (Head Vote Buyer) invoked the Heroes Act to make payoffs to unrelated loan borrowers. Pretty unilaterally!!!
 

delus

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This is the Australian model. (I'm pretty sure) The way it works there is everybody must vote by mail, with very few excuses allowed. If you don't vote, you pay a penalty come tax time. Simple.
Hard to say that this is a nonpartisan issue in the USA, with only two parties even a very small shift one way or the other results in huge wins. Only one party has been trying to restrict voting, in the last say... 50 years.
 

bykfixer

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Former President Jimmy Carter once said there are 3 ways to vote that would invite cheating and therefore should never be allowed.
1) mass mail in voting (not meaning absentee voting)
2) drop boxes
3) not requiring a photo ID to vote.

It's not about stopping everyone from voting. It's about honest elections. All this talk about voter fraud lately is just now getting the attention it deserves. Yet it's been going on for decades and both parties have benefitted at times.

When my wife was a care taker for an elderly man she was excused from jury duty by checking a box on the form and mailing it back. I've served on a jury and it was an honor. Yeah it was kind of a drag to have to call in once a week and listen to a recording to see if my number came up, sure. Yet if not for a jury of our peers the gubment appointed judge would have 100% say so. You might be ok if you have loot. But if they appoint you a lawyer it's more likely the prosecution team will be like a pro football team and your defense is like an elementary school kickball team.

I vote because people gave their lives a long time ago so I could.
 

jtr1962

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I believe Biden's previous blatant attempt to buy votes using tax dollars as a pay-offs for students that had loan debt, which was stopped by the SCOTUS. The justification was the HEROES Act of 2003, meant to provide loan relief for the Soldiers fighting in the current wars. Secretary of education Miguel Cardona (Head Vote Buyer) invoked the Heroes Act to make payoffs to unrelated loan borrowers. Pretty unilaterally!!!
Yeah, but that wouldn't have disadvantaged one of the parties. Quite the opposite actually. If you have a contract, you're allowed to alter it in a way which advantages the person who signed it. That could include forgoing or reducing rent, forgiving a loan partially or fully, etc.

For all the noise about Biden's attempt at loan forgiveness, in the end it probably would have been revenue neutral. The money saved on loans would have been pumped back into the economy, creating jobs and more tax revenue. The government also would have saved on repeated futile collection attempts trying to get money from people who just didn't have it.
 

M@elstrom

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This is the Australian model. (I'm pretty sure) The way it works there is everybody must vote by mail, with very few excuses allowed. If you don't vote, you pay a penalty come tax time. Simple.

Uh no... mail voting is an option if you will be unable to attend during the voting period (like being overseas) but otherwise you can vote early in the week prior or just turn up like everyone else on the day, if your name is not marked off of the voting roll you WILL be penalised financially (a fine is sent to your residential address).
 
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Yeah, but that wouldn't have disadvantaged one of the parties. Quite the opposite actually. If you have a contract, you're allowed to alter it in a way which advantages the person who signed it. That could include forgoing or reducing rent, forgiving a loan partially or fully, etc.

For all the noise about Biden's attempt at loan forgiveness, in the end it probably would have been revenue neutral. The money saved on loans would have been pumped back into the economy, creating jobs and more tax revenue. The government also would have saved on repeated futile collection attempts trying to get money from people who just didn't have it.
Who is it, exactly, that "forgives" the loans? How does that work? Are taxpayers going to be forced to pay the loan holders? Or is Uncle Sam Biden just going to print up a whole bunch of money to pay the loans, thereby increasing the current, all-time high inflation?
 

jtr1962

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Former President Jimmy Carter once said there are 3 ways to vote that would invite cheating and therefore should never be allowed.
1) mass mail in voting (not meaning absentee voting)
2) drop boxes
3) not requiring a photo ID to vote.
Of all those 3, I'd say drop boxes are most likely to invite fraud unless the chain of ownership is handled rigorously so it's not possible for a person to throw away ballots, or add ballots, without many others being aware of it.

Mail-in voting, having the envelopes opened and tabulated only by machine, is pretty much as close to fraud-proof as you can get.

Photo IDs can be faked. In fact, it's big business in my city where in the past cops used to stop people for petty offenses. Maybe everyone gets a unique ID number each election which is random. You have to use that number regardless of how you vote. If the same number is used more than once, all the votes using it get thrown out.
It's not about stopping everyone from voting. It's about honest elections. All this talk about voter fraud lately is just now getting the attention it deserves. Yet it's been going on for decades and both parties have benefitted at times.
It has, but almost always not in large enough numbers to change the outcome of an election.
When my wife was a care taker for an elderly man she was excused from jury duty by checking a box on the form and mailing it back.
No such option here. In fact, I read this yesterday:


The fact a bill had to be proposed explicitly exempting caretakers tells me they weren't excusing people all the time for this. The issues mentioned are all real. It's impossible to get somebody to mind a person on the short notice you get before serving on a jury. Even if you can, the typical people in these jobs are notoriously unreliable. The Home Health Aid which the insurance has been paying to come 5 days a week comes any time between 10AM and 5 PM. Since I no longer need the help, I told them to stop sending her. I'm tired of wasting my days waiting around for her to come, then having her in my way 2 hours each day. Now imagine depending on a person like this if you have to leave the house all day for jury duty? Then there's the cost. At upwards of $25/hour you're looking at $1,000 plus a week while you're serving. Few people have that kind of extra cash. So I'm glad this bill exists, I hope it passes, but what took them so long?
I've served on a jury and it was an honor. Yeah it was kind of a drag to have to call in once a week and listen to a recording to see if my number came up, sure. Yet if not for a jury of our peers the gubment appointed judge would have 100% say so. You might be ok if you have loot. But if they appoint you a lawyer it's more likely the prosecution team will be like a pro football team and your defense is like an elementary school kickball team.
Sure, and if jury duty was a once in a lifetime thing I'd feel the same. Just tell them to put your name on the list of potential jurors at times in your life when serving is least disruptive. That could be when you're between jobs, retired, on school break, whatever. You get called, serve, and never have to worry about it again. But sadly we've made it a highly disruptive, burdensome thing, especially with all the stupid civil trials. If nothing else, at least abolish juries for civil lawsuits.
I vote because people gave their lives a long time ago so I could.
I think the founding fathers must be turning in their graves now seeing what they system they fought for has become. Nowadays elections remind me of voting for class president in grade school. First off, only the loud-mouths ran. Then they would make promises for things they had no say over. Some of them included ice cream every day, no more tests, everyone gets an A all the time, all day is play period, etc. Just like people who run for office now. Most of the promises they make are out of their control to fulfill. If I ran for anything, I'd make one promise-I'm not taking a salary while I'm in office. That's the only promise I know I could keep.
 

jtr1962

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Who is it, exactly, that "forgives" the loans? How does that work? Are taxpayers going to be forced to pay the loan holders? Or is Uncle Sam Biden just going to print up a whole bunch of money to pay the loans, thereby increasing the current, all-time high inflation?
Most student loans these days are owed to the government, not private lenders. So basically loan forgiveness would involve changing numbers in a DOE computer, not paying off lenders.

Also note probably 90% of the loans which would have qualified for forgiveness were never going to be paid off anyway. Many had been in collection for years/decades but the person who owed them was flat broke. You can't get blood out of stone. It's cheaper to discharge loans you can't collect. Also note that any other type of debt has a statute of limitations. If you don't pay for x years (typically 2 to 10, depending upon the state), the debt is no longer legally collectible. This is to keep people from having debts they can't pay haunting them forever.

I looked at some numbers estimating inflation increases from loan forgiveness. Almost all of them were 0.1% or less. That's more or less a rounding error.
 

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When it comes to politics, every American has the God given right to not give a :poop:

Forcing them to vote?? Enjoy write-in ballots for Satan, Santa, The Easter Bunny, and Mike Chaulk.

By the way, that last one is a real person. He lives in Ontario, Canada. Co-founded an experimental poetry collective. And, makes his living by trucking beer! Along with being in possession of the manliest beard I've ever seen! Mike Chaulk.... First Canadian ever elected as President of the United States of America since every citizen was forced to vote! A truly massive online campaign effort that apparently Mike Chaulk was completely unaware of! Along with a massive and successful online petition to abolish the requirement that U.S. Presidents must have been born in America before being eligible to run for President.

When asked for a comment, Mike Chaulk thought the whole thing was an elaborate prank for the first 72 hours until he was shown the election results. Having garnered a staggering 98.4% of the vote. :p
 

IMA SOL MAN

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When it comes to politics, every American has the God given right to not give a :poop:

Forcing them to vote?? Enjoy write-in ballots for Satan, Santa, The Easter Bunny, and Mike Chaulk.

By the way, that last one is a real person. He lives in Ontario, Canada. Co-founded an experimental poetry collective. And, makes his living by trucking beer! Along with being in possession of the manliest beard I've ever seen! Mike Chaulk.... First Canadian ever elected as President of the United States of America since every citizen was forced to vote! A truly massive online campaign effort that apparently Mike Chaulk was completely unaware of! Along with a massive and successful online petition to abolish the requirement that U.S. Presidents must have been born in America before being eligible to run for President.

When asked for a comment, Mike Chaulk thought the whole thing was an elaborate prank for the first 72 hours until he was shown the election results. Having garnered a staggering 98.4% of the vote. :p
You remove that restriction and you will see someone like Xi Jin Ping, the Ayatollah, or some other crack pot dictator elected POTUS. No thank you.
 

kaichu dento

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You remove that restriction and you will see someone like Xi Jin Ping, the Ayatollah, or some other crack pot dictator elected POTUS. No thank you.
Unlikely it would be one of those two but your point stands and since too many are getting elected for their popstar-like image it would be no surprise for it to be some rapper, Taylor Swift or someone from the K dynasty.
 
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