Two reasons why more students don't vote

Is the hassle to register and vote a whiny gripe among lazy students — or are they actually onto something?

The Minnesota Daily has two pieces about student complaints with the current election:

1) Documentation requirements. The documents needed to register are too restrictive for many students and the rules behind them are a bit vague — leading to students being turned away for having the wrong documents.

Phillip Childs, a third-year University student and war veteran, tells the Daily:

“I believe I fought for this right [to vote]. I just wish they made it easier for students.”

2) No time off to vote. Mike Munzenrider writes in the Daily that even though workers have the right to vote while on the clock:

University policy states that voting is no reason to be excused from class. Making it out to vote today will be a juggling act for any busy student. Between school and work schedules, homework and reading, squeezing a bit of extra time out of the day is sometimes easier said than done. … It’s unfortunate the University’s administration is making it all that harder for you to go to the polls today.

The university has maintained that the window of 13 hours gives students plenty of time to vote.

  • It is true that students have unusual and extremely pressured schedules, but there is never an excuse not to vote. However, it was certainly a challenge for me to register. Many students are transient or new to the state and do not have state-issued identification. With five people living in my house, my name is not on any of our bills and my other official mail is sent to my permanent address out of state. Of four women, only one of them would agree to come to the polling place with me to vouch. I feel very lucky that I was able to register to vote!