Should voting be mandatory?

Asked in Politics by a contributor
edited by Instigator
1 Yes Take
Write Your Yes Take
1 like 1 dislike
How can you complain about Congress and the President not doing their jobs if you don't vote? It's a moral obligation. If voting was compulsory then people would keep more informed about the government and our society would be more educated in general. Stand up and be counted!
The thing is most people that don't vote either don't care, think their vote won't make a difference or are just too stupid to make the right choice. If all of these suddenly have to start voting will the wrong representatives and measures be passed? Then you're doing more damage than good! Would the result be worth all the added costs?
Voters who vote just because they are forced to will not become better informed. They will still be the same disinterested uninformed people they were only now you'll have disinterested uninformed voters actually casting votes. No thank you.

3 No Takes
Write Your No Take
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No. Voting is a civic right, not a civic duty. Turnout is at about 50% currently. Just imagine the unnecessary problems and expenses enforcing a law like this. What penalty are you going to impose? What would be much smarter is to implement some kind of incentive. Make each person's ballot a lottery ticket for a national or local drawing. I bet you'd increase the turnout by at least a quarter.
2 like 0 dislike
I disagree with this. Compulsory voting is effectively a compelled speech act. This is a violation of our freedom of speech (or more precisely our freedom not to speak!) under the 1st amendment. Why should we have polls full of people who don't want to be there and may try to undermine or disrupt the systems we have in place?
Written by a contributor
1 like 0 dislike
If something is compulsory by law there must be legal consequences to not doing that something. That means either a fine or imprisonment for not voting.  Are really going to do such a thing. Besides, forcing someone to go into a polling booth against his/her will will likely result in wasted votes or worse votes for the worst person on the ballot. You can try to force a person into the booth, but you cannot force that person to vote responsibly and responsible voting is what we need.

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