President Barack Obama says that it is too difficult to vote in the United States, and he has a few ideas for how to make it easier, drawing from other countries, including automatic registration, voting on weekends, or making Election Day a national holiday.
“We are the only advanced democracy that makes it deliberately difficult for people to vote,” Obama said in an interview with the student newspaper at Rutgers University.
He went on to say that “some of it has to do with the nature of our history and our Constitution, where we allow individual states to determine their own processes for structuring elections within certain boundaries.”
A student reporter then asked him about low voter turnout, saying, “In many other countries, the government automatically registers voters and holds elections on days that are weekend days or national holidays. Do you think it’s time for the U.S. to follow their lead?”
“Absolutely,” Obama said.
“The single most dramatic political change that could occur in this country — and the best way for us to relieve the frustrations that people feel around the political process — would be if we had greater participation that was more reflective of the day-to-day concerns that people have,” he later added.
Yvad Billings, Readers Bureau, Fellow
Edited by Jesus Chan
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