Should Compulsory Voting be Made Compulsory to Encourage Political Participation?

Should Compulsory Voting be Made Compulsory to Encourage Political Participation?

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Though we live in a democratic society, there are a large number of people who remain politically disengaged. Should voting be made compulsory in order to encourage political participation? Compulsory voting has the potential to increase participation and also encourage political engagement.
There are many positive things that are produced after enacting compulsory voting according to Eric Lund “in Western democracies demographically and culturally similar to the United States, this comment suggests that enactment of comparable laws would benefit our political system in four ways. Such law would (1) provide a system more representative of the general public, (2) increase the amount of moderate politicians who are willing to cooperate and compromise with each other, (3) reduce the incentive for campaigns to target special interest groups, super PACs, and corporations, who now have unbridled ability to fund election efforts under the recent Citizens United decision,'" and (4) instill a sense of civic responsibility in the American electorate, thereby increasing participation in the U.S. political system.” (Lund and Others 2013, 90—147)
Compulsory voting would encourage the large group of none voters to participate, helping to address the issue that low participation is caused by a lack of interest in politics. “Compulsory voting is first and foremost an institutional remedy for low electoral turnout” (Lund and Others. 2013, 90--147) However if it has become mandatory that everyone votes a person may feel more inclined to inform his or herself on the subject matter, political parties and leaders they are voting on. If everyone is required to vote campaigns will no longer target special interest groups as they will all have ...

... middle of paper ...

...itics 29, no. 4 (2013): 499--520.


Lundell, Krister. "Civic participation and political trust: The impact of compulsory voting." Representation 48, no. 2 (2012): 221--234.

Mackerras, Malcolm and Ian Mcallister. "Compulsory voting, party stability and electoral advantage in Australia." Electoral Studies 18, no. 2 (1999): 217--233.

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