Monday, November 08, 2004
Our government is supposed to represent all the people in the country, not just the voters. Public input into actions taken by government is not limited just to voters. If elected officials acted only in the interests of those who voted for them (and, of course, those who gave money to their campaigns), we would have, well, the sort of government we have now. Voting is not a prerequisite for protest, for public input, for public expressions of concern.
Voting is the basis of election of officials. It is not the basis for opinion, democracy, or governance. Yes, people who are concerned about what our government does should vote but that is not the sole responsibility of citizens.
Almost 300 million people live in the US. About 115 million voted in this election. There are 542 nationally elected members of government (Congress, Pres. and Vice-Pres.) These people make decisions that affect all people in the country including the approx. 75 million who are under 18 years of age. (The number of children in poverty was 12.9 million in 2003.)
Government has a responsibility to all the people not just the voters.