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Parajuli: Tax Them to the Polls

(11/10/14 12:39am)

Four out of five young people did not vote in Tuesday’s election. In fact, the U.S. Election Project estimates that this year’s midterm saw the lowest overall turnout since 1942, as reported by the New York Times. Should this worry you? It should if you care about democracy. A torrent of recent studies show America’s democracy in crisis: In his 2012 book “Affluence and Influence,” Princeton University’s Martin Gilens found that lawmakers only respond to the policy preferences of the rich, while the middle and lower classes are basically ignored. Larry Bartels, Benjamin Page and Jason Seawright later added that real policy influence might in fact rest with “the one percent.” Increasing electoral turnout via a universal poll tax will reinvigorate democracy.

Blair and Ghazal: Vote Today

(11/04/14 12:36am)

A recent “Trending @ Dartmouth” feature in The Mirror asked which type of midterms inspire greater student apathy: academic or political. We appreciate the pun, but realistically, the answer is almost certainly political. Dartmouth students put ample energy into their academic responsibilities, extracurricular pursuits and interpersonal relationships, often leaving little time for political engagement — not even voting. In 2010, only roughly one in five eligible New Hampshire voters under the age of 29 exercised their right to vote. As the president of Dartmouth College Democrats and vice president of Dartmouth College Republicans, we urge students to avoid replicating this statistic by both voting today and encouraging others to do so.

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