Leesville students have many avenues for political action. Aside from various personnel actions, like emailing legislators and simply talking to the constituents, Leesville students have access to Political Club–and now, the Voter Registration Drive.
Led by Mr. Caggia, the Voter Registration Drive is an opportunity for young adults who are eighteen by the time of the election to register to vote. In order to be registered, the students must be a US citizen and a Wake county resident. This school year, the drive registered 110 students for the March 15 presidential primary.
“We’re at a major turning point in our country’s history,” says Sean Nicol, one of the few seniors old enough to register. “This is probably the most unpredictable election cycle ever…and it’s hard to find someone in the middle, which is what I’m looking for. It’s hard. I still haven’t decided…but it’s my civic duty to vote.”
For the November 8 general election, the deadline to register is October 11.
Youth voters are playing a larger role in this election than any other. In this campaign season, the youth vote is carrying more idealistic candidates like Bernie Sanders. According to the Huffington Post, over 80% of voters under thirty support Sanders–the majority of his support.
In the 2008 and 2012 elections, the McCain and Romney campaigns did not acknowledge the significant bloc of youth voters. According to the Washington Times, if either campaign had had just 45% of the youth vote, both campaigns would have won their respective elections.
Currently, there are approximately 4 million eligible eighteen-year old voters. However, this demographic registers to vote at a much lower rate than the normal population. If this group registered at the higher rate of the rest of the population–71%–there would have been nearly 1 million more voters in the most recent elections.
In many county and state elections, this demographic could be a deciding vote; in the major presidential election, this demographic is being heavily emphasized as the most important and most underutilized.