Voting Turnout for our Lives

Election Night watch parties are a tradition at American embassies around the globe, despite the embarrassment of historically low turnout. This year, despite the pandemic, blatant voter suppression, and economic maladies, Americans are voting at higher rates than ever before.

Voting turnout records

According to Nick Corasaniti and Stephanie Saul of The New York Times, more than 90 million registered voters have already voted. In Texas and Hawaii, turnout has already exceeded the total vote from 2016. In ten other states, including my state of Florida, turnout has surpassed 80 percent of the last presidential elections. By some estimates, we’ll have nearly doubled that number after Election Day.

Americans are showing they believe this is a participative democracy, and that means voting in this election.

Voting turnout energized

We have been energized by the absence of national leadership. The coronavirus pandemic. The #BlackLivesMatter movement. Heightened political engagement since Trump’s election. When We All Vote, Michelle Obama’s nonpartisan organization, partnered with 13 artists to produce these voting campaign images.

Voting turnout is optimistic

Never as divided as a nation, all of us are desperate to be a truly United States once again. In his recent NYT column, David Brooks points to Joe Biden as the unifying choice.

Biden is campaigning in a land filled with fear, hatred and apocalyptic thinking. It would be so easy for him to reflect that fear and hate back to voters. That’s what Trump does. But Biden is not doing that … Biden is instead running on the conviction that, despite it all, Americans deeply love their country, and viscerally long for its unity. 

David Brooks, NYT

Speaking at Gettysburg, the Civil War battlefield intrinsically linked to Abraham Lincoln’s iconic speech, Biden said this.

And he taught us this, a house divided could not stand. That is a great and timeless truth. Today, once again, we are a house divided, but that my friends can no longer be. We’re facing too many crises. We have too much work to do.

Vice-President and presidential candidate Joe Biden

Voting turnout america’s success

Embassies can proudly shine a light on their country’s patriotism and commitment to democracy this year. Maybe they’ve already shared Michele Obama’s voting campaign art!

Leave a Reply