Make it Count: the push for younger people to vote

"Make It Count" Voter's Guide
Make It Count

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — For Americans, turning 18 comes with a new sense of independence and many more responsibilities one of which is voting.

However, young people are infamously known for putting this civic duty on the back-burner.

“We’re trying to solve that problem but it’s hard for college students especially students that are living away from their hometown, figuring out how to change their voter registration that sort of thing,” Zoey Brown with Missouri State University said.

Brown says there’s been a big-push on college campuses to help students troubleshoot those issues.

“I see a lot more resources about how to vote than I did in 2016,” Brown said.

And social media is making it easier than ever for young people who are interested in voting.

“It’s super easy when you see it on your Instagram, click this link and you’ll be registered to vote and then you’ll be ready to go,” Kristen Sawyer with Drury University said.

“There’s still that urge to vote but I feel like a lot of people don’t feel like there’s a candidate that represents their values,” Elijah Ponder with Drury University said.

Young people will represent more than one-third of the electorate for this year’s presidential election.

“Whether you think that your vote doesn’t matter or not, it absolutely does,” Kristina Khodai a professor at Missouri State University said. “The 2016 election the votes were so close in determining who was going to be the president and it’s so close in other cases as well.”

Young Americans look and think a lot differently than older generations.

“We need to start showing up because these baby boomers are making decisions that are going to last 100 years 70 years that are going to directly affect us, our future, our careers, things like that,” Kristen Sawyer at Drury University said.

According to a recent national poll, 79% of young people say COVID-19 helped them realize that politics matter in their everyday lives, and 83% currently believe they have the power to change the country.

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