What if America made voting mandatory?

votingDozens of other countries force their citizens to participate in elections

By Alan Greenblatt | Governing

There’s already one thing we can say for sure about this year’s elections: Not enough people are going to vote. Turnout in 2012 was 55 percent, down from the presidential election held four years earlier. In the midterm elections of 2014, only 36 percent of Americans voted — the worst showing in more than 70 years.

Such anemic results have resuscitated an idea that’s been put into practice in about 30 other countries: making voting a civic requirement. “It would be transformative if everybody voted,” President Obama said last year.

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