opinion   |   oped

EDITORIAL: Where you vote is just as important as why



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Students line up Nov. 6, 2018, to vote outside the Indiana Memorial Union. Claire Livingston Buy Photos

With the current IU Student Government elections, the editorial board wants to shed light on not only why it’s important to vote — as it is our civic duty — but also how where we vote creates different impacts.

Not every student that attends IU is from Bloomington, therefore leaving them with the decision to either change their voting location to their new home, or continue to mail in/go home to vote.

For those on the editorial board that go home to vote or vote absentee, there were several different contributing factors.

First, although we’re surrounded by IU and Bloomington politics from working for the IDS, some feel more comfortable voting at home because of the knowledge and familiarity of hometown politicians surpassing that of college-town politicians.

Additionally, some feel as though their vote here won’t make as much of a difference as it would back home. While Indiana has traditionally been a red state, one reason those that choose to vote at home do so is because their state is considered a swing state, like Ohio, where their vote would have more of an effect on the outcome.

Another reason is centered more on post-college. Many will most likely choose to not stay in Bloomington, or perhaps even Indiana, after they graduate, and if that’s the case, why vote in a temporary location? Voting at home would not only affect those that return home after college, but also your parents and other family members and neighbors.

On the other hand, there are those that choose to switch their voting location to their new home here at IU because a new home, no matter how temporary it is, means a new voting status as well.

Some believe that once you move to a new location, you should make it your duty to learn about its politics as well. Since you now spend most of your time in this location, it’s important that you want to see the right changes made, and this can only be accomplished through voting.

Moreover, having to travel home to vote may be an inconvenience for some; if you live across the country or even a few states away, it doesn’t make sense to have to travel home for a November weekday just to cast your vote.

There is the option of mailing in a vote, but again, this could be seen as a possible inconvenience if you live in a residence hall. Living in an apartment or house may be easier, but then you have to make sure you actually send the form in and not accidentally regard it as junk mail and toss it.

But in the end, no matter where you vote, you should vote nonetheless. Whether it be to change your temporary or permanent home, voting is a civic duty that needs to be upheld in order to keep the country just.


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