The 2018 Election Rundown — What to Know, Why to Vote

Will Stuart, Writer

The Michigan Secretary of State has stated that for this year, voters will be eligible to cast their vote at their respective polling places on Tuesday, Nov. 6 from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. So with time to spare until polls close, make sure to get informed and cast your ballot today.  

Here are some of the most important issues and candidates on the ballot this year:

  • Senate – Dem. Debbie Stabenow v. Rep. John James
  • House – There are many at both the local and federal level, however UM-Flint is located in Michigan’s 5th congressional district and here the race is Dem. Dan Kildee v. Rep. Travis Wines
  • Governor – Dem. Gretchen Whitmer v. Rep. Bill Schuette
  • Proposal 1 – Allows for the purchase of recreational marijuana by those age 21 and over
  • Proposal 2 – Changes the redistricting rule of legislative and congressional districts to allow for an impartial commission to draw the lines
  • Proposal 3 – Adds eight voting policies to the Michigan Constitution, including straight-ticket voting, automatic voter registration, same-day voter registration and no-excuse absentee voting

Since the 70s’, participation rates in voting by college students have gone down. However, we have a chance to change that.

It’s understandable how many have come to believe voting isn’t necessary due to the idea that “my vote doesn’t matter” or “what will one more vote do?” but that’s simply not true–especially at the state level where propositions pass or fail based solely on the number of votes that are cast.

Even now, proposal 2 is aiming to try and correct this problem, so every vote can matter. The Knox County of Illinois Website has shown that throughout history, there have been many instances where major decisions that shaped the whole of the U.S. came down to just a few votes. Richard Nixon, not John F. Kennedy, would have become president in 1960 if one person from each voting place had cast their ballot in favor of another candidate.

If just one U.S. Senator had voted differently, President Andrew Johnson would have been removed from office in 1867. And the vote in the U.S. Senate was 27-25 to invite Texas to become a state. Had it been a tie, Texas would not have become part of the country.

Your vote matters. Even if you don’t think the issues on the table are important, the right to vote is a luxury countless amounts of people have fought to gain throughout the world.

The Secretary of State website has a page devoted to giving information about where you can vote provided you fill out the form.

Make sure to go out and vote today.