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Introduction to Government: Mandatory Voting (Essay Sample)


*Introduction to Government Essay
*General Assignment Description:
Write an argumentative essay of approximately 4-5 PAGES, 1500 words minim, which demonstrates classical argument
form (introduction, arguments, opposing views, refutations, and conclusion) concerning a debatable topic relating to a
governmental topic. The argument must relate primarily to a government action—i.e., it should not be primarily a
philosophical or ethical argument. The topic could involve any geographical, or historical context. It could relate to any
government, anywhere, anytime. Note that any court case, at any time, is a government issue. Essays must utilize 5
research sources (from 5 different websites) which must be documented in MLA 8TH EDITION format (in-text citations
and Works Cited page) . Students must find and use 5 of their own sources—not rely only on sources listed in syllabus.


Student’s Name
Professor’s Name
Mandatory Voting
During the Spanish and American colonial periods, the Philippines were the first to use an election system. The method was restricted to male and educated people in the society and was more of a ceremonial than a genuine democratic mechanism. The struggle for our independence and democratic government has resulted in the political system, political leaders, and electorate that we have now. Elections have always been a prominent feature and mechanism in practice and it is anticipated that with a better-informed electorate, they will continue to function as vehicles for true democratic administration.
Those who fail to vote without a valid justification may be subjected to penalties. It truly offers general public message. There is nothing of the sort as a political class in a majority rule government. Casting a ballot is something that is for everyone, including and particularly individuals at the edges of society. If everybody votes, it reminds public authorities that they are responsible to all residents, not simply the most vocal and dynamic ones.
Although Americans persistently campaigned for the right to vote, voting has never been a legal obligation in the United States. Despite the fact that the idea is periodically brought up, the United States has never adopted compulsory voting. On the other hand, people all over the world aspire to have the right to vote, but Australians do not have that option. In Australia, citizens aged 18 and above are required to register to vote, those who don’t registered are subjected to penalties and court cases. However, there are both arguments in favor and against making voting mandatory.
Arguments in Favour
Despite the numerous issues with implementation of mandatory voting, a number of experts, policymakers, and voters around the world agree that compulsory voting is a good idea. They support it on a variety of theoretical and technical reasons, in addition to the obvious rationale of enhancing electoral participation
Low Voter Turnout
Voter turnout is the level of qualified voters who end up participating in a political decision by casting a ballot. Elector turnout is one of the vital signs of how residents take an interest in the administration of their country. Higher elector turnout is a sign of the essentialness of popular government while lower turnout is typically connected with elector disregard and the question of the political cycle.
There has been a pattern of diminishing voter turnout in most established popular governments since the 1960s.In U.S. election, where voting is not a legal requirement, in the year 2016,the voter turnout was 55%,nearly half of the population did not vote ,one of the most hotly contested in recent history.On the other hand, in Australia where voting is a legal requirement, over 96% of Australians who are eligible to vote,90% of those voted in federal elections, compared to only 55% in America 2016 presidential election. In 1924, voting became a legal requirement in Australia, voters turnout increased by 32% from the past political race which was held in 1922. Since then, voter turnout has stayed high at a normal turnout of 95%. This shows that the most basic way to ensure that everyone participates in political decisions is to make voting mandatory.
Reduce Polarization.
America appears to be more politically polarized than at any time in recent memory. Low turnout, according to proponents of compulsory voting, favors rigid partisanship. A larger diversity of ideas would be serviced if all voters went to the polls, and political leaders would be less prone to cater to extremist views. Compulsory voting decreases the possibility of fiscal spillovers between voters and non-voters, reducing pressure organizations' incentives to spend resources on lobbying (Craig and Leonard, 1993)
Improved Election Campaigns.
It would be unnecessary to focus campaign efforts to groups of people because candidates would have to represent the widest range of interests and preferences feasible, single-issue voting would have less impact. Low voter turnout, power and policy decisions are concentrated in small group of people. Minority citizens are frequently harmed as a result of this. Knowing that they would be representing everyone, not just the politically ambitious, may result in a more honest campaign.
Mandatory voting also has certain financial benefits for elections. It is claimed that it improves the quality of campaigning because politicians focus on topics rather than encouraging voters to vote. It also reduces campaign spending and eliminates the need to invest in voter knowledge in this way. Furthermore, compulsory voting generates revenue for the government (Gratschew, 2008).
Discourage Voter Suppression
Making voting mandatory would make it easier for more people to vote. The state would be compelled to ensure that everyone, even those in prisons, nursing homes etc. are entitled to vote. As a result, voter suppression would be discouraged.
Political Participation
Mandatory voting, according to the Australian Election Commission, "teaches the benefits of political involvement" (Evans, 2006). It advances civic education by putting theory into reality, resulting in immediate political awareness and civic engagement. It is also likely to improve the frequency of political debate and citizens' political understanding (Milazzo, 2008). To put it another way, encouraging folks to vote is a fantastic instrument for discussion and politicization. Mandatory voting rules alter the information landscape during election campaigns by elevating the importance of political debate (Birch, 2009; Shineman, 2012)
Opposing Views
Uninformed Voters
Forcing people to vote will result in ballots being cast by people who have not done their homework on the best candidates to vote for. According to several studies, ignorant voters are easily affected by television ads. This will also result in increased in number of spoiled votes.
Freedom of Choice
The right to vote also includes the freedom to abstain. Making voting compulsory would be a violation of people's right to vote. That effect would be amplified if not voting or refusing to vote were a criminal offense. Some believe that punishing someone for declining to vote is unconstitutional. If voting is a right, punishing someone for not exercising it makes no sense – any more than punishing someone for not exercising their right to vote.
Financial Strain
When failure to vote became a felony, enforcing such a rule would cost an unimaginable amount of money. For starters, sorting out the names and addresses of people who did not vote would take a long time. Then it would be a big step to track them down and serve them with a ticket (or whatever punishment is required). Then there'd be the issue of collecting the fines. Detractors argue that enforcing a compulsory vote would be inefficient and costly, with little benefit.

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