Why vote

The U.S. has one of the lowest voter turnout percentages of any nation. Since most voters live in states where it is clear which candidate will win, consistently low voter turnout is not too surprising. The question remains – why do people vote at all? The best answer is that people vote because they feel its their duty as citizens.


Political scientists often question why America's voter turnout is lower in Presidential elections than voting rates in other countries. Psychologists and some economists prefer to question what factors convince people vote at all. In my opinion, laboring to answer this question seems like an illogical waste of time. After all, rarely, if ever, does any vote determine an election. So why do people actually vote? There is no clear answer to this question. Though a number of good theories have been put forth. One theory holds that people vote to feel better about themselves. Some feel by voting they fulfill their "social responsibility" and that makes them feel better about themselves. Others think voting is a social norm. In other words, when people belong to a community and everyone in their community votes, they feel they must vote as well. Sometimes that community may be their political party or their church or any other group to which they belong. It is clear that the decision to vote is not chosen rationally, through doing a cost–benefit analysis. If this was the case, one would expect to see the more educated population voting in lower numbers. However, the facts are just the opposite. The higher the level of a potential voter's education, the greater the chance they will in fact vote. Thus, it is clearly not a rational decision that brings people vote. Yet, vote they do.