“The tree which moves some to tears of joy is in the eyes of others only a green thing that stands in the way.” - William Blake
by Kris Parfitt
- The Capitol Hill Times -
Voting does make a difference and provides us all an equal opportunity to choose our leaders, change laws and make history. We recently asked our readers about why they vote; here are some answers, from responders are far as Maryland.
“Civic pride and duty, and the perspective that if you don’t vote, you can’t bitch. This is my idealistic public policy side coming out, but being able to vote and have a voice is one of the cornerstones of this democracy established by our founding fathers.” Leigh Kopicki, Seattle
“I feel it is a responsibility. I am a citizen and enjoy the benefits of our country. Voting responsibly is something I think I should do.” Bryan Hawkins, Bothell
“Because I can. It’s something that shouldn’t be taken for granted.” Mark Kammerer, Seattle
“I vote because I can; but also because if the vote goes my way, I feel good about it, and if it doesn’t, then I feel like at least I did what I could, and what I felt was right.” Jessica Gaiser Howard, Eugene, Ore.
“I am a female and a Hispanic immigrant who swore an oath when I became a citizen. This unique privilege of stepping into a booth and casting my vote is not something that is available the world over. I vote because of the duty I feel to this great nation to honor the millions of people who suffered so that I would have a say in who my local, state, and federal officials will be and who, in turn, I hope hold up their end on the promises they make me. I feel it’s the most patriotic act of an American citizen.” Carla Bravo, Long Beach, Calif.
“Because it’s a duty and a privilege. And I give a damm.” Kathy Knudson, Morgan Hill, Calif.
“I am voting to make sure the house and the senate are representatives that will support the issues that I feel strongly about, like women’s rights, more effective health care and laws that moves us in to the future on this internet world. Some of which our president doesn’t really have control over.” Cate Calson, Annapolis, Md.
Unfortunately, due to fraud and law breaking in the past decade of America’s election process, citizens question the integrity of our nations electoral system. With over 150 million registered voters less than half vote because they don’t feel their vote will make a difference. This apathy impacts the larger picture of who runs our government.
Washington State votes by mail. It is convenient and provides the ease of voting in their own home ensuring the obstacles of weather, family and work do not hinder one to reach the polls on voting day.
The last day to register to vote was Oct. 6, 2012. By now, registered voters in the state of Washington should have received a voting ballot. If you are a registered voter and have not yet received your ballet, please contact your county elections department.
Washington State provides many ways to assist voters in becoming informed about ballot measures and candidates. A General Elections Voter’ Pamphlet is usually mailed a week before the ballots to provide residents time to read over the measures and candidates. If a pamphlet is needed in accessible formats or alternate languages please call 1-800-448-4881. If an online version of the ballot is preferred visit wei.sos.wa.gov.
Remember that there are other sources of information about candidates and issues include local newspapers, television, libraries, political parties, and campaigns.
The most important step in voting in Washington State is to return the ballot. It cannot be counted unless it is received. Ensure that the postmark on the ballot is no later than Election Day, Tuesday November 6, 2012. A ballot can also be dropped by a designated ballot drop by 8 p.m. on Election Day or returned in person to your county elections department by 8 p.m. on Election Day.