It’s a tough a political time in America, but the one constant message across both parties is understanding the power of your vote. While it may feel small and insignificant, the 2018 midterm elections have the potential to change the course of our nation’s politics. Currently, the Republicans have majority control of the House of Representatives.
What does this mean?
Congress is made up of U.S Senate and House of Representatives. Every two years, representatives are voted into office based upon their congressional districts. These representatives go onto serve committees and introduce bills in hopes of turning them into federal law, etc. The number of districts is proportionate to the population of the states. The house is comprised of 435 voting representatives, most commonly known as your congressman or congresswoman. 218 seats are needed for a party to take majority, currently, there are 236 republicans and 193 democrats with 6 vacancies.
This upcoming November is monumental for both state and federal government positions. Every seat in the House of Representatives will be up for election, 35 Senate seats, 36 governorships, and several legislature seats all of which will be decided in the 2018 midterm elections. These open seats at the federal and state level have the potential to change the current trajectory of politics throughout the country.
Most people opt-out of politics because they are uninformed, don’t care or are overwhelmed. Understanding politics does not have to be synonymous for becoming a politician. Pick one issue you are very passionate about i.e. gun reform, women’s rights, LBGTQ+ rights, healthcare, immigration, etc. Take a moment to try to educate yourself about the politics of that issue, then the opposing side, and then fact check.
WHO DOES IT IMPACT?
WHAT’S THE ISSUE?
WHAT IS THE ALTERNATIVE?
HOW WILL THIS INFLUENCE MY LIFE?
Take it a step further and see who the politicians are on local, state and federal level and what they are fighting for. Perhaps, the most important part is to ensure that whichever political party you side with, you are doing it because you agree with their views. There is no value in siding with a party because it’s trendy or unpopular. It serves no purpose for our democracy.
When November rolls around make sure you and everyone you know is registered to vote. If your state is holding a primary election before November, educate yourself on when and where and if your state requires you to vote for your registered party. Each state has their own rules and regulations regarding voting deadlines and how to sign up.
It’s not acceptable to be uninformed in the age of the Internet.
Election Day is Tuesday, November 6th, 2018: educate yourself, register to vote, know your polling locations and stay informed.
This piece was originally published on Unwritten. || Featured image via Karen Kavett on Instagram.
I live in New York, representing the East coast portion of Words Between Coasts.