With the second presidential debate over, it’s decision-making time.
Both candidates are strong images of the parties they represent.
For students who will be participating in the 2012 voting cycle and their first presidential election, checking the box beside Democrat or Republican is an intimidating, complicated and entirely new experience.
This, perhaps, is why student registration in 2012 has seen diminishing numbers from years past, or perhaps, students simply do not know how to register, and because of the complexities of the system currently in place, they cannot be blamed.
According to the United States Census Bureau, in the 2008 presidential election, six million Americans did not cast their vote solely due to confusion as to how to register.
To combat this on campus, the Idaho Civic Engagement Project (ICEP)partnered with the student governing body, the Associated Students of Boise State University (ASBSU), have launched initiatives to get registration forms out to students by staking out on the quad in booths with the bundles forms
“We’re excited to partner with the Idaho Civic Engagement Project and give our fellow students the opportunity to register to vote,” ASBSU President Ryan Gregg said as he chipped in at the ICEP booths. “It’s important for all citizens to be engaged, and what better place to start than registering to vote on campus? Colleges and universities are uniquely positioned to be forums for discussion and models for civic engagement.”
ICEP’s cause accomplishes much toward their goal, as simple observation of one of their events will see many students approaching and penning their names to cast a vote come November.
Though, accessibility is only one facet of the issue and to assume it is the only issue would be incorrect.
There are also questions about where to vote and when you are able to vote.
Many students find themselves perplexed by the entire election cycle, attempting to compare what perhaps may be their parents’ beliefs to what they hear through the media to what politically active friends may say.
Needless to say, the volatile nature of the political grand stage of 2012 is difficult to fathom if one does not possess a leather-lined political stomach and the candidates and campaigns themselves do very little to assist or accommodate students to learning
The proof is in the polls, as the Pew Research Center released details stating only half of the 18-29 year olds who voted in 2008 are even planning to vote in 2012.
With attitudes such as those implied in the poll, how could any student be encouraged to register when such a landslide of peers are turning away?
The partnership between ICEP and ASBSU states a noble cause and their presence on campus should be welcomed, their services embraced by all unregistered students.
As a bipartisan organization, the ICEP is keen on educating students how to register, and how to tune out the unwelcome noise of the typical political
Students should care as a plethora of issues pertaining their financial aid programs and potential debts are on the table.
No matter how volatile, it is an essential civic duty to vote.